I have mixed feelings first of all something that was super simple now is complex. Also I am not sure how this price breakdown will help a buyer in anyway? Lastly the only change for us that we are short a $1.40 per ~50% of our sales which for me is around $550 per month.
P.S My stomach starts to hurt when I visit the forums, each week new “great” changes…
And as expected, although asked not to lock it, the topic announcing our open letter to Envato, has been locked and dismissed in the name of keeping things “centralized”. Very bad practice! It was the reason I chose to publish on Medium as forum topics get locked and buried while comments get lost in so many pages on hot and important topics like this one. So, fellow authors, please forgive me if I repost this link so that maybe enough people read and share (the link and their own views), enough to maybe actually make Envato finally give up listening and start a meaningful dialogue!
Thank you everyone!Alex
+1 You nailed it!
ThemeVillage saidI cannot agree more with above. Currently I’d define our business as very fragile. We always have to rush to create new theme instead of fine tuning and updating existing one. Yearly maintenance fees would definitely help here. Buyers will feel more secure and authors will cover their costs.
On a more serious note ( in contrast of my previous post )
In my opinion – the only way for authors to keep improving and supporting items is to sell themes on a subscription basis. New devices come out, new Wordpress versions, new browsers with new problems, etc. etc. – the only way to keep supporting items ( and doing customer support ) is with a recurring fee to access updates and support (in other words – to keep your purchase code valid).This approach would let me:
- Improve my item on a regular basis ( Improve doesn’t mean ‘mo options, ‘mo features. Improve as in cleaner code, optimize and test on more devices, etc. )
- Keep supporting the item (again – not “forced/expected/mandatory support”, but actual genuine support)
Customers would buy a “re-subscription” and that would mean that I could eventually make more sales and help us keep motivated to improve our existing themes instead of “rushing” to build a new one. This is the actual problem in my opinion and one that I’ve been thinking about on how to solve for a while now. The current model isn’t sustainable – we always need to “build the next big thing” in order to keep sales going instead of being able to focus on what we already have.
When you think about it – every reasonable piece of software out there charges again for updates. Support is always free. ( ScreenFlow, Tower, Sublime Text, Kaleidoscope, 1Password, – just a few apps that I’ve “upgraded” recently to keep up to date )
http://themeforest.net/forums/thread/25-days-no-replay-from-support/140464 ^THIS!!! FRESH AND HOT!!!
Thanks, gg no re
Many of the questions you have raised were discussed by Collis here.
Sorry but Collis does not discuss anything, those are just pretty empty words to silence some of the authors. It’s clear Envato doesn’t want to change anything, you talk about the community etc. but you don’t listen to us at all. All you do is crowd control, “we will wait until the heat comes down and then roll out the changes anyway”.
And saying that you are a business and thats why you need to take 30% from our income from support is just sad… and makes me sick that you think that way.
I guess it is time to start looking for alternatives.
ThemeFusion said+1 This is a pretty good idea, make the updates available only when you have active subscription.
I think as an author, we should first, stop acting like those buyers who threats with 1-star rating to get their work done.
Instead, we should help Envato understand both sides of the story and they do need to come up with a better plan for both, those who want to provide support and those who want to treat their items simply as an as-is stock item and don’t want to make a commitment about support.
Personally, we are happy to keep our item well supported and keep our staff employed for a very long time and also pay them an even better salary. Let me share a major story, most of our buyers get all the support in the first month and then come back after a major update. So right now, I agree with one of the authors who posted way back in this thread that this is still not sustainable without bundling updates together.
Lets take a step back: why can’t we simply make the entire purchase valid for 12 months? After that, the user has to purchase again for their license to be active. I think that makes the things very simple while not changing the rules? We all, including Envato, can learn from this small change.
Am I crazy?- Muhammad
LCweb saidCollis is right, 80/20 is the right number, it does not apply to you, but for us all.
Finally @Collis: I’d really like to know how did you make the stat on customers percentage asking for support. 80/20 is absolutely wrong. I think that at least 40% asks for support or at least some info about improvements/customizations, specially if you have a good system and provide support fastly! (e.g. me)
For ME it is 60/40 or 50/50…
Thanks to whoever it was for removing my message saying that because of mandatory support starting from December first, authors will not have normal Christmas and New Year holidays.
Personally I will not make my support team working on holidays. So will have to do it myself.*You can remove the post as many times as you like but I will post it again anyway.