How to integrate Circle (community forum)
If you would like to have a place for your members to create threaded community discussions around various topics (like a Facebook Group or forum), Circle is a great modern tool to do that with. Your members will also be able to privately message each other.
We are recommending Circle through an affiliate link, which means we earn a commission if you choose to purchase, at no additional cost to you.
If you do not have a website and simply want to charge money for access to your Circle community, click here for that guide.
MemberSpace has a simple single sign-on (SSO) integration with Circle which means when your members are logged in via MemberSpace on your website, they will automatically be logged into your Circle community and not have to create a new account of any kind.
Our Circle integration is only available to customers on our current plans. If you're on a legacy plan, you can easily switch to a current plan here.
How to setup Circle integration
If you prefer video instructions, click below:
If you prefer written instructions, here you go:
- Sign up for your Circle account here.
- In Circle > click the Settings icon in the top right > click Single Sign-On > toggle on Enable SSO:
- In Circle > select MemberSpace from the OAuth Provider dropdown and copy the Callback URL:
- In MemberSpace > click Customize in the top navigation > click Integrations > click Circle > paste in the Callback URL from Circle > Select which Member Plans should have access > then click Integrate with Circle:
- In MemberSpace > one at a time, copy the Client ID, Secret Key, and MemberSpace URL:
- In Circle > one at a time, paste in the Client ID, Secret Key, and MemberSpace URL:
- In your Circle Settings > click General on the left > make sure you toggle on 'Make this a private community' and then click 'Save changes' at the bottom:
- By default, when members visit your Circle community, they will NOT be added to any Spaces automatically. They would need to click the 'Join space' button in the top right on each Space's page:
If you want members to be automatically added to Spaces, you'll need to create an Invitation Link in Circle. To do that, click the Members icon in the top right of your Circle backend:
Then click 'Invitation Links' in the left sidebar > click 'Create an invitation link'.
After you create the link, you should use that wherever you link to your Circle community so that any members who click it will automatically be added to the Spaces you specified.
If you'd like to limit which Spaces of your Circle community can be accessed by specific Member Plans, you'll need to use our Zapier integration for MemberSpace + Circle (e.g. when a member joins Plan A, only give them access to Space #1 and Space #2 within your Circle community).
- That's it, you're done! Now when your members are logged into your membership, they will automatically be logged into your Circle community.
And if someone who isn't logged in tries to access the community, they will be prompted to log in as a member (via MemberSpace) automatically.
Regarding GDPR implications, Circle.so is considered a sub-processor for your membership site, and you are the controller.
Feel free to toggle on the other two options below 'Enable SSO' if you want.
You should be linking externally to your Circle community URL (e.g. example.circle.so) from your website so it opens in a new browser tab/window. You should NOT be embedding Circle on your page or using their popup option, otherwise redirect and login issues can occur.
How to customize your Circle domain
We recommend you customize your Circle domain in order to avoid 3rd party cookie issues that can occur with certain browsers. You'll need to set up a custom domain with Circle ( here's how).
Then in Circle > click the Settings icon in the top right > Single Sign-On > copy your new Callback URL. In MemberSpace > click Customize > Integrations > Circle > replace Callback URL with what you copied > click Update Now.
Member cancelation issue with Circle iOS app
Circle recently released an iOS app so your members can access your community via a native app on their iOS devices. This is great! But there is a problem, when a member cancels their Member Plan with you (which grants them access to the community in Circle), they will still have access to the Circle community via the iOS app. We are actively working with Circle's team to address the issue. In the meantime, you have two options:
Don't allow your members to access your community via the iOS app. In your Circle backend > go to Settings > scroll down to 'Allow my members to access my community from Circle's iOS app' and toggle it off:
Use our Zapier integration to set up a trigger for when someone cancels a Member Plan:
And then add an action for Circle to 'Remove Member':
This way members will no longer have access to your Circle community after they cancel their Member Plan with you.