No software has all the features I'm looking for. Most were very strong in the recurring billing aspects and CMS, but lacked serious community features. Community is very important if you want to retain paying members. The content entices them to join, but it's the people that get them to stay. The community aspects of Xenforo are addicting and that's why I decided to go with it! I'm looking at the long term.
There are still challenges and there is no full CMS yet but I can use Xenporta and put my articles in a forum node and that will work for now. The payment options are lacking (just paypal) but there is a coder here working on Authorize.net integration. I could always just stick a shopping cart payment button on a page and manage the registrations manually (it's not elegant but it's functional).
I looked at using Wordpress and sticking on Xenforo to that but then the site becomes dis-jointed and you end up with 2 separate search boxes (for content and forum). It's not as smooth as having everything in one system.
I'm sure the road ahead will be bumpy but I am encouraged by the discussion of some of the upcoming features in Xenforo. It's not just a forum software, it's a community software and much more powerful than people give it credit for.
Is anyone else using Xenforo to manage a private paid membership site, or planning to? I'd be interested to hear your story and any tips you have.