An important feature for many membership sites is the ability to display a dynamic directory of members and profile pages. Here is some information on how to add and customize these features using the Member Directory and Profile Pages Add On for Paid Memberships Pro.

Before you get started, consider this.

While a directory may be a desirable feature of membership, it is important to make it clear to your members what information will be made public or displayed privately. You can communicate what information will be shown, and what other members are allowed to do with that information via a Terms of Service agreement or elsewhere on your site.

Some points to include in this message would be:

  1. Can members directly contact another member via email?
  2. Can members copy the list of all members and send them mass email?
  3. Can a member opt to exclude themselves from the directory or just hide specific information?
  4. What are the consequences for abusing your policy?

Creating the Directory and Profiles

The Add On page covers primary documentation for the Member Directory and Profile Pages plugin. This includes the basic steps of generating the pages under Memberships > Page Settings and customizing the shortcode to display your unique fields.

Below are a few recipes, tips and tricks to make your directory even more robust.

  1. Capturing Additional Member Fields

    Our Register Helper Add On allows you to add new profile fields at membership checkout. This is a key plugin used by most membership sites that have unique fields based on the topic of their membership site. Some examples may include a file upload, such as a restaurant menu or resume, or business categories, such as “Small Business” or “Non-Profit”.

  2. Hide or Show Fields on Member Profiles based on Membership Level

    For many membership sites, a feature of higher-tier membership is the additional of more profile fields on the member directory, perhaps three videos or audio embeds, additional logos or photographs of a business location, or expanded contact information (website, phone, email). This can be achieved via the code recipe outlined in the link above.

  3. Allow Members to Upload an Avatar or “Logo”

    If you are planning to include images in your directory, this post outlines some recommended plugins for user avatar management on your WordPress site.

  4. Capturing Default WordPress Profiles Fields for your Directory

    The WordPress User profile already includes some key fields you may want to leverage for your membership site, such as “Site URL”, and “Description” (or biographical info). This post covers how to capture those fields for display on user profiles.

  5. Frontend Profile Field Management

    While we may eventually role this into the Add On, we recommend using the “Themes Profiles” module of the Theme My Login plugin to allow members to edit their profile fields in the frontend theme of your WordPress membership site. View the plugin in the repository »

Who can see the member directory and profiles?

There are a few methods to control the directory and profile visibility. It may take a little creative thinking to wrap your brain around the examples below, so please open a topic on the members forum and we will be happy to help you achieve your goals.

  1. Using the Page’s “Require Membership” Settings

    Set Membership Restrictions for a Page If your directory is visible to members only, you can control the content access to the page you place the directory shortcode on just like you do any other piece of member content. Simply edit the directory or profile page and check the appropriate level(s) in the “Require Membership” meta box.

  2. Using the [membership] Shortcode

    You can duplicate the directory or profile page shortcode and wrap it within the [membership] shortcode to show a unique member directory by level, this can take many shapes, such as Level 1 Members only being able to see other Level 1 Members, or Level 2 Members not being able to see full member email addresses, while Level 1 members cannot view this information.

    Here is an example of this method:

    [membership level="1"]
    [pmpro_member_directory levels="1"]
    [membership level="2"]
    [pmpro_member_directory levels="2"]

Want a better search, category filters or sorting?

We’re always working to example the features of this and all of our Add Ons. So if the unique directory options you need aren’t covered by the tips above, please post a comment below or open a topic on the member’s forum.

Author’s gravatar

if I wanted to create a custom layout of the directory without hacking at the code of the plugin, where / who would i do that?

Within my child theme I tried adding my own file /childthemename/templates/directory.php

then I tried /childthemename/pmpro-member-directory/templates/directory.php

and neither seems to take hold. The only success I have is by hacking the source code of the original Directory plugin. Any thoughts? Id like to avoid hacking the plugin itself if I can avoid it.

Author’s gravatar

You have to hack the core plugin for now. I’ll try to get it to load templates out of the theme like we do with the core PMPro and in PMPro Register Helper.

Author’s gravatar

The plugin doesn’t work perfectly for me: it displays only the members’ firstname (and not their lastname) and the search function doesn’t work.
Moreover, I would like to display other informations gathered at the registration step. How can I do that?
Thank you.

Author’s gravatar

Not sure why it’s only showing first name. I believe it’s setup to use the “display name”. You can possibly use this plugin to make sure the display name is set to First Last.

And you can use our Register Helper plugin to add custom fields.

We’re having a webinar on it tomorrow at 2pm EDT:

Author’s gravatar

Thnaks for your answer. How can I customize the output: eg (1) modify the colors, or more importantly (2) display the member’s company with a link to the company’s website?

Author’s gravatar

The membership directory options are only partially working for me. I’ve turned off the “start date” successfully but can’t turn on the phone number.
[pmpro_member_directory show_startdate=”false” show_phone=”true” layout=”4col”]

Even though I have “show_phone” as “true”, it never displays the number from the extra field nor the profile telephone number field.

Secondly, the “View Profile” link wont link to a members profile page… it just bounces back to the directory page. I added the profile shortcode to a profile page, but it isn’t working. 🙁

Any help? Thanks Richard.

Author’s gravatar

I’ll have to test the phone number field, but know that it won’t show up if there is no phone number value there. Perhaps we are looking for a specific meta field here.

RE not linking to the profile page, make sure that you set the profile page on the page settings tab of the PMPro settings.

We can help you further in the member forums.

Author’s gravatar

We are using Member Directory and Profile Pages Add-on and wondering how to show custom fields which are added using PMPro Customizations (Register Helper plugin).

We have tried adding custom fields input name in fields attribute of short code but with no luck.

Any help would be really appreciated.


Chintan Desai

Author’s gravatar

using search never works for me, any search term just brings me back to my homepage instead of displaying any search result.

Would like to be able to search on any field

Author’s gravatar

Where in the sweet wide world is the Company name for the directory supposed to pull from??? I have the shortcode [pmpro_member_directory layout=”3col” show_level=”false” show_startdate=”false” avatar_size=”128″ fields=”Company,company;Website,user_url”] but it is not displaying a Company Name anywhere (and why should it? there’s nowhere for a member to enter it!)

Author’s gravatar

It pulls from “user meta”. You need a way to add that field to the user profile, e.g. with our Register Helper addon:

Author’s gravatar

OK, I’ve added the Register Helper and I don’t see a way to add a member’s company name anywhere. Does it only work if they come through checkout? This is a problem since my client’s members will be added manually.

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