Thanks for your interest in Exchange and the Exchange add-ons.
With Exchange and the Membership add-on, you can create membership products and restrict content to that particular membership. While there is a Multi-item Cart add-on, you do not have to enable it in Exchange. And there is a Store page, but you can either disable it, or just rename it (both the page title and page slug) in your Exchange settings to something that would better suit your particular situation.
Using the Recurring Payments add-on,
We're working on a demo site for memberships here: http://demos.ithemes.com/ithemes-exchange-membership/ You can actually "purchase" one of the demo products and checkout what the account page would look like. You can use the Stripe option with one of the test card numbers listed here: https://stripe.com/docs/testing
QUESTION: I understand not having a tool to email all members until they opt in, but these have already opted in, so will MailChimp's add-on resolve it so that they can email the membership from the website through Exchange/MailChimp? (Like mark them as opted-in.)
I'm not sure I understand the question. The MailChimp add-on for Exchange just adds users to your lists in MailChimp. You still have to go into MailChimp to create and send your emails. If the customers are already on the list, even if they don't check to register for your email, they're already on the list and not checking to opt-in won't remove them from the list. If I misunderstood the question, just let me know and I'll do my best to answer.
QUESTION: We understand how recurring payments works. Is there an adjustment so that overdue payments cut off member access, we can adjust how many days late before that happens?
You can set up recurring payments so that they are automatically recurring or not automatically recurring. If it is not automatically recurring, at the end of the month/year, the membership ends until they repurchase the product. If it is an automatically recurring payment, the customer will be charged every month/year until they cancel their subscription. If a payment is declined for some reason, it ends their subscription and they will have to repurchase the membership.
QUESTION: Can we turn off all ecommerce tchotchkes like add to cart, wishlist, most ecommerce icons & tools, except for making annual dues payments through a custom "welcome" message that tells only some of them when dues are due based on individual due dates? (or "everyone whose dues are due at the first of September")
Yes, you can disable the cart. There isn't a wishlist option in Exchange at this time and you'd have to be more specific on the other "icons & tools" for me to say for sure on those.
There is an account page you can customize for your customers, but there isn't an option to make a custom account page based on the customer or their subscription dates.
BIG QUESTION: Can we automate the process of pulling member info in real time so that protected member pages display current and updated member info? (We have programmers; can the data be extracted?)
Do you mean on the customer's profile page? If so, they can update their information there, but it doesn't actually display. Of course, if you have programmers who are capable, you are welcome to customize Exchange however you'd like in order to suite your needs.
Let us know if you have any additional questions!