As mentioned here: http://themeforest.net/forums/thread/locked-themeforest-exclusive/8360 Jeffrey asked that we stay on topic. This is the thread we can discuss what we were going off topic on.
Jeffrey, I would like to know your calculations on the subject of the author exclusivity program and how it is someone has the potential to earn nearly $100,000 (that you mentioned FlashDen authors have achieved) from HTML Templates or CMS Themes within a reasonable amount of time (1-2 years).
Assuming the most popular template is $15, an author would have to get 13,333 and 1/3 sales over the course of 1 year. Obviously it won’t be on a single template. So lets assume a rockstar author has 20 of the most popular templates at $15 each. Each of those has to get 666 and 2/3 sales to reach that $100K mark in 1 year. AND that’s only assuming the author has already reached the 50% commission mark. Even spreading that over 2 years would be difficult, especially in your spare time.
Obviously no single author will manage to build the 20 most popular, highest selling templates. So it will come down to building 50 or more highly popular templates to even dream of $100K in a 1-2 year span. Each template (of the 50) would have to sell 22.22 times per month consistently to reach $100K in 1 year.
I think it can be argued that an HTML Template can take as much time as a flash template but is priced 1/2 or even 1/3 as much as most flash templates. So obviously it’s more lucrative to build flash templates in relation to the time it takes to build them.
I think it’s important for the envato team to remember that just because a commission program on one site worked well, doesn’t necessarily mean it will work just as well with everything else.
Maybe I’m the only one that feels this way so I don’t want to sound like a broken record. If I’m alone on this subject, I’ll quietly retreat into my hole…
Lastly, I want to make sure Jeffrey that you don’t feel like I’m attacking you. I’m not trying to attack anyone. I really like the idea of ThemeForest but many many people who build websites (better than I do) that I tried referred to envato, laughed at 50% only after earning $30K. People think it’s a joke and a rip off. I know I’m making your job difficult by discussing this stuff and I’m sorry, but I feel it should be discussed (to death again).
You statements do make some sense. And I am not trying to prevent a forum discussion. But the thing is by posting in the forum it comes of as complaints, or just venting. Where as if you want your statement considered or looked into the more appropriate measure would be to write support with your thoughts.
I can assure you that they do read and look into all emails. So that may be a good path for you to consider.
I think the percentage problem comes down to quality. You will be able to find thousands of designers who will work for lower percentages, you’ll just be hard pressed to find any that really know what they are doing.
And you really think that emailing support would make any difference after its been discussed at such length here in the forums? I think its pretty clear they’ve made up their minds.
xmdsys brings up some good points between this thread and the other one here recently. I’ve said that I’m content with the commission but that is probably because I didn’t come here for monetary reasons. For Themeforest to become a place for top-end templates then I believe the commission will have to change. And please stop comparing Themeforest to Flashden.
When I email support, it’s private and it’s one guy that doesn’t like the system. That’s easy for the support staff to deal with.
If everyone on the forums reads my thoughts, it’s more likely I won’t be the lone ranger on this and with enough public support, envato will have to face the pressure of the publicity and higher numbers of people.
Look at some of the top selling files on FlashDen. One file, even if the author is not exclusive (at 25%) has made him $10,630. The file was uploaded this July. And there are several other files which have made similar amounts. That’s a lot of money, whichever way you look at it.
But you can’t expect ThemeForest to get that number of sales already, with it only being a few months old. FlashDen has a good footing as being the site for quality flash files. But as TF grows, as quality restrictions become more harsh, I’m sure the prices will go up also.
Personally, I think the rates are unfair, and while this money is going to advertising the site & creating new marketplaces, the rates need to be changed. Not necessarily now, but it would be nice to see them change at some point in the near future. If anything, just to let authors know we’re valued (so to speak).
Now, I’m not complaining about ThemeForest in anyway, and I love what Envato stand for, with their constant promotion & giveaways. I see it as the much better alternative to some of the other site marketplaces who offer authors a better %, but draw in much less buyers; and I will continue to use TF.
I didn’t come here for monetary reasons.
Me too but it’s nice to get “some” extra cash by side.
When I email support, it’s private and it’s one guy that doesn’t like the system. That’s easy for the support staff to deal with.If everyone on the forums reads my thoughts, it’s more likely I won’t be the lone ranger on this and with enough public support, envato will have to face the pressure of the publicity and higher numbers of people.
Yep, I completely understand. I wasn’t saying “stop talking on the forum”. I was just saying that in the end if you actually want to get them to consider it, you will need to be going through support.
Always good to have a good rates and pricing discussion
Certainly at the moment it would be difficult to get to $100k on ThemeForest because the site is pretty small still. As you say on FlashDen we have had authors make twice that actually, but FlashDen is 2.5 years old and author incomes definitely rise over time. Also of course it’s hard to compare two different marketplaces.
Still there are three factors that go into the revenue – price, volume and %:
Generally prices can go up over time It’s hard to start a marketplace with high priced items. I actually saw a themes marketplace about a year ago that had products priced at $200 each but it went nowhere. Pricing low tends to bring in the customers. It’s like the old drug-dealer concept – give ‘em free samples and get ‘em hooked! But seriously, overpricing categories is pretty bad for them, I have a feeling we made a mistake with the Joomla category for example which isn’t moving and is more expensive than other parts of the site.
The items on FlashDen generally used to be cheaper, but over time we’ve slowly raised prices on different categories and once across all categories and it has led to bigger revenue for authors (and correspondingly of course for envato!)
Next year we will be launching a new feature to give authors more pricing control and flexibility. More on that soon.
Volume will go up over time The second factor is how many of what actually sells. This one definitely goes up over time and it does so for three reasons.
First people figure out what sells better. A good example being that admin skins category which has proven to be a neat seller and which is now getting larger comparitively quickly.
The second reason is that our traffic – and in particular search traffic – grows and is growing. We are currently getting about 6,000 – 7,000 visitors a day, up to 10,000 – 11,000 when a big promotion is going on such as the recent PSDTUTS Web Design Week. FlashDen gets about four or five times ThemeForest’s traffic and it’s been on a steady incline for a long time now as TF will too.
Thirdly the quality of traffic improves as we get more and more people who are returning here on purpose rather than casually finding the site for the first time.
So generally speaking we can expect volume of sales to increase. To some extent this will be distributed over a larger library of files, but experience has shown that it does involve generally larger sales on more popular items.
*Percentages ….... * And that leaves us with factor number 3 – The % rates. This one is the main valve under Envato’s control and the one we get pressure to change for obvious reason! And while we have changed it before, there isn’t anything on the cards at the moment. That said we have an end-of-year meeting coming up and as I mentioned on another thread I will bring up the rates discussion with the team as it is worth discussing.
Anyhow I hope that explains more on the topic of earnings and revenues. At least hopefully it explains I guess ThemeForest’s strategy Our business model is reliant on authors succeeding, so that certainly is our main aim with the sites. When authors win, everyone wins.