How to create a freebie library on WordPress

You probably know that growing your email list goes a lot faster with lead magnets (or content upgrades, or freebies…whatever you want to call them. And hopefully you’ve got a few built up by now. But have you considered creating a resource library where your subscribers could download all your PDFs at once? This guide will teach you exactly how to create a resource library on WordPress.

Read on.

A free resource library can be a major listbuilder. And it seems a lot more complicated than it is. But I’m here to help.

What is a resource library (or “freebie library”)?

A resource library (or “freebie library” if you prefer) is a page on your site where you make all of your lead magnets/content upgrades/freebies available for download, without having to sign up for each one.

“A resource library is a location on your website where you keep a collection of valuable tools for your audience.”

Sweet and Simple Life

(Source).

You’ll password protect the page (it’s easy to do, I’ll show you how) and provide all your email subscribers with the password in your intro email when they subscribe.

This way, people don’t need to fill out 10 different opt-in forms if they want all your freebies. Once you have their email address once, there’s no benefit to having them fill out another form.

Why you should have a free resource library

First of all, it’s a great incentive for people to sign up for your list. You’re offering people so many freebies at once, people really like signing up for these, even if they don’t know everything that’s in it. You’ll probably get a lot of subscribers from it.

“A resource library is a great way to provide value to your audience, and grow your email list.”

Jess Creatives

(Source).

Second, it’s a courtesy to your subscribers. Once they’ve subscribed once, there’s no point in making them subscribe again. It’s an annoyance to them and there’s no benefit to you. With a resource library, they’ll never need to opt-in to something again.

How a to create a free resource library on WordPress

Resource library opt-in page

The first thing you need is an opt-in page for your resource library. Some subscribers will sign up for an individual freebie, get the password via email, and go from there.

But other people who haven’t signed up for anything yet need to be enticed to sign up for the resource library.

I do this by making “Freebies” or “Resource Library” a page on my main navigation bar. But when they click the link, they don’t go straight to the resource library, they go to a page that has two parts.

First, for people who already subscribed and have the password, I offer them a button to click to go to the resource library and enter their password.

Second, for people who haven’t subscribed yet and don’t have the password, I have a pretty standard opt-in page. I describe what they’ll get if they sign up and ask for their name and email. Not everyone will sign up, but a lot will.

Resource library page

Then comes the actual resource library page.

First things first, we need to password protect it. Create a new page like you normally would. Then, on the top left side of the screen underneath “Status & Visibility,” change the visibility from “Public” to “Password Protected” and pick whatever password you want. Your page is now password protected.

Screenshot of the password settings for your resource library on a WordPress site. How to create a resource library.

Next, we need to set up our layout (we’ll worry about linking things up later).

You can play around with it and see what looks best to you, but in my opinion, the best way to create a resource library page is to use rows with two or three columns, and in each column provide an image of the freebie and a button underneath it to download it (and if your image doesn’t clearly show the title of the freebie, you’ll want a text block with the title in between the image and the button).

You can have as many rows as you need.

Side note: I wouldn’t start a resource library until you’ve got five or six freebies to use. It’ll look kind of silly with just two things in there.

How to create images for a resource library

It’s up to you what kind of images you want to create.

You could do something very simple and just take a screenshot of the cover page of your freebie (which presumably has the title on it) and just use that image.

You could also take screenshots of the cover and a few inner pages and create a spread-out layout.

Or, you could create an image with some text on it and then a picture of the freebie underneath.

Like this:

Image with text and an image of the freebie cover page and inner page. How to create images for your resource library.

Dealer’s choice.

Whatever you choose, just make an image for each freebie that you want to use in your resource library.

How to link PDFs to buttons in your resource library

The last thing you need to do is create download links for your PDFs so that when someone clicks the button, it’ll automatically download. Luckily, WordPress makes this really easy.

You may not know this, but you can upload a PDF to WordPress just like you can upload an image.

  1. Go to the toolbar on the left side of the screen and click “Media.”
  2. At the top where it says “Media Library,” click “Add New.”
  3. Then upload your PDF just like you were uploading an image.
  4. Once it’s uploaded, you’ll get a page that looks like this:
5. Click the “Copy URL to clipboard” button on the right side. This is the direct link to your PDF.

Now that you have your link, it’s time to set up your buttons.

Copy/paste the link to your PDF as the button link and test it out. If you did everything right, the PDF should automatically download when you press the button.

Then just rinse and repeat for each freebie.

Emailing out the password for the freebie library

Last thing you need to do is make sure that all subscribers have the link and the password to the library.

If you already have some subscribers from before you made the freebie library, just send out an email announcing the library and give them the info.

Then, from then on out, whenever someone signs up for your list in anyway, your introductory email to them should include the link and password to the resource library.


So that’s it! That’s how to create a resource library in WordPress.

Did this guide work for you? Share your libraries in the comments, I’d love to see!

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