Can I migrate away from s2Member and use WPMUDEV to do these thigns...?

Here is a big one...

I use s2Member "Pro" with PayPal Pro and PayFlow... (hence my lack of sleep this year)

...and for the last six months, three or more days a week, I've LIVED in the s2Member plugin and their forum trying to resolve multiple issues.

And if you've used s2Member and WPMUDEV--you already know how *VAST* a difference the "support" is at s2Member.

I'm interested in the Membership Plugin but have some questions and concerns to help migrate all of our membership 100% transparently away from s2Member.

While we're not PHP/MySQL gurus, we're technical and experienced with web, IT, hosting, programming and development.
But we want our membership system to work for us automatically once we enter all the settings--we want to drive the car--not work on it every day.
You know, just go crazy and plugin a "PLUGIN" and let it WORK :slight_smile: :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

VIP Issues

Some members cancel and continue to be charged via PayPal for several months (including my own test account!)
Some members cancel and continue to have access to member content for months
Some members cancel and continue to have access to iTunes, member only podcasts
Some users try to become a member and they get authentication errors -- we're literally in the 20th our of that issue right now
There are other issues I cannot recall off the top of my head.

But in short, we don't want to have to keep trying to fix these issues for the 10% of the instances where they occur, nor keep trying to identify WHY they happen, or what's causing it...we kinda think the membership system should just ... work.

It Would Be VERY Nice to Have

I wanted to offer a Gift Certificate and a Gift Membership form where users could buy a membership gift and the form would accept the giver and the recipient info. S2Member's answer--go pound sand, s2Member cannot do that.
I want to be able to edit fields in the default forms, adding or removing them (without modifying the core plugin, or getting an MIS degree in PHP)... same answer.
I wanted to be able to change the size of individual fields in the default s2Member forms (they're all the same full page width! Which you can wrap in a div and make them all 400px wide--ooohhhhh, lovely) useless. Same answer.

We have three user levels which do Content control:

User Levels

1. User (WordPress free Subscriber)
2. L1 Member, recurring monthly at $ xx
3. L2 Member, recurring monthly at $ yy

Content Control

1. Access to exclusive pages (with content and media)
2. Access to iTunes member only subscription

The important questions:

1. Will the Membership Plugin work with PayPal Pro and PayFlow to manage recurring membership subscription payments?

2. If we use the Membership Plugin, will we be able to transparently migrate our user records? - We're aware that s2Member does not use it's own table, and that it does use the default WordPress User table (if that's true).

3. If we use the Membership Plugin can we install it, wire it up to PayPal, and continue with our membership base so that the existing members do not need to change anything?

a. Will existing members need to change anything?
b. Will we need to change anything in our records or in PayPal records?

4. Does the Membership Plugin work with iTunes podcasts for member only subscriptions?

5. Does the Membership Plugin work with our media content on Amazon S3 CDN?

6. Does the Membership Plugin easily allow us to drag and drop create gift certificate/gift registration/gift membership forms (which allow a giver to put the recipient's information in the form so that the membership goes to the recipient in email)?

7. A lesser consideration, but does the Membership Plugin allow drag and drop integration with Formidable Pro?

8. Are there any questions I'm not asking that I'll wish I had asked?

Finally, if anything cannot be done the way we currently do it--can the Membership Plugin accomplish the work in another (turn key, non PHP coding) way?

Thank you for your serious consideration and clear, specific answers to each question... you amazing WPMUDEV community and staff.

Chris

  • anotheropus

    Thank you Tom,

    I'm nominating you for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

    And if we can come up with a solution here--we will be heroes of the Internet. There will be whirled peas, and rainbows for everyone.

    I'm not alone in the s2Member forums, dreaming, just DREAMING, of a system that JUST WORKS for users and not only for the PHP mechanics of the world.

    The best writers hide the craft and reveal the art.

    The best programmers hide the application and reveal the HOW.

    The best car builders need few mechanics.

    The best...

    Almost 20 years ago I laughed at AOL because "it wasn't the real Internet." Then five years later when most of the start up crew at AOL retired as 28 year old millionaires, I had a big aha moment--

    "MAKE APPLICATIONS INTUITIVE AND EASY TO USE SO THAT YOUR USERS NEVER NEVER NEVER NEED YOU."

    Editorial comment: A concept lost on Redmond :slight_smile:

    Warmest,

    Chris

  • Tom Eagles

    @anotheropus

    Hi Chris,

    Here's a list of answers.

    1) Membership supports paypal express and paypal single payments.Paypal express supports subscriptions.
    2)Depending on the format you might be able to import the users if you can export from s2 in csv format, this may need modifying but you could use our add users plugin to import from csv
    3) The way round this would to be create users accounts with an expiry date set to their current expiry date on your old system by manually extending their membership,and add them to your new subscription rates.
    4)This could be done via our rules function in membership or using url groups.
    5)That should be possible.
    6)This would involve custom coding, but you could use say marketpress to offer the certificates.
    7) What exactly did you mean by this?
    8)Probably but we will cover them later lol :slight_smile:

    Hope this helps if you need it fleshing out let me know

    Cheers

    Tom

  • anotheropus

    Hello Tom,

    Thanks for the careful consideration and the answers--I know it wasn't an easy lsit :slight_smile:

    1. Looks like I'm painted into a corner with s2Member, they have a robust integration with PayPal Pro. But you need to be a robust PHP person to do anything out of the box with s2Member--and they're proud of how they built the box.

    2. s2Member uses the WordPress user table. They don't bolt on another table to handle users. I'll need to learn how to use their payment transaction IDs and payment recurrence data fields, since that realm's not native to WordPress.

    3. Seems do-able, yet a bit manual and analog :slight_smile:

    4. I'll look into that. I'm looking for as much OOTB out of the box, ready to go as I can find.

    I see now I'm moving backwards from what we've got now. s2Member is a pain in the butt, we have several inconsistencies, and you live on their forums and Google two or three days a week for a couple of hours each day so you can try to learn why something doesn't do what a. the instructions say it will do, or b. do other things that seem like they'd happen natively.

    Tom there's a piece missing--vacuum in the WordPress world.

    All membership systems handle the basics (page and content protection, and basic payment processing). But after the cornerstone is covered they all leave out pieces that I think a lot of users would want.

    Thank you again,

    Chris

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