12 posts
  • Has been part of the Envato Community for over 2 years
  • Located in Australia
  • Has collected 1+ items on Envato Market
  • Sells items exclusively on Envato Market
cmsgods says

Recently I submitted our first theme called, Aphrodite. It’s a multi-purpose theme for Wordpress. It has a completely unique way of adding in content via a page building system that doesn’t use shortcodes. Yet, after all of the hard work and effort that was put into the theme it was rejected with the following message.

“Unfortunately your submission Aphrodite – Responsive Multi-Purpose Wordpress isn’t quite ready for ThemeForest and requires significant improvements and changes before it can be resubmitted and reconsidered.

Additionally, we have some extra feedback for you:

We have reached a point where we have enough of those minimalistic designs with the generic [header-banner-teasers-footer] layout. If your item doesn’t bring anything new to the table it can’t be accepted.

If you want to submit any more files that falls into this category [similar items] they not only have to be up to our standards, but really outperform any existing ones.”

What does this rejection message actually mean and does anyone have any pointers perhaps from experiencing this rejection message before to bring it up to scratch? The feedback seems to be somewhat vague and doesn’t clearly indicate (at least not to me) what it is exactly about the theme that warrants it being basically called generic. It’s a multi-purpose theme that can look like anything, was the review based on the demo site content perhaps and not the actual theme files themselves?

From a backend perspective the theme was attentively crafted and we even added in custom hooks/actions so non-destructive changes can be made to the theme by developers. Pages are constructed using modules; content, grid module, blog posts module, contact form module, accordion module and a Google Map module with live preview and custom styles.

The grid module is something I am especially proud of. It allows you to add in gridded content to a page without copying/pasting shortcodes for layout. Choose the number of columns you want, simply click “add new column” and a new grid column is added in, add your content and then save. If the grid module is too simple, there is a grid shortcode that can get even more advanced

The theme has implemented great support for the Theme Customization API as well and even has a custom options page for controlling settings for various parts of the site (even the ability to exclude particular pages from search results).

Not only that, but the theme was tried and tested on multiple server environments under various restrictions. An importation file that pre-populates the site with actual content was included as was super-detailed and well-laid out documentation that was written and proof-read by a professional copywriter.

It’s somewhat disheartening considering the amount of effort that went into the theme. If any constructive feedback can be given based on the rejection notice, it would be gratefully appreciated from the bottom of our hearts.

The theme can be seen on the demo site here: http://goo.gl/HpeVo

4377 posts
  • Has referred 10+ members
  • Has been a beta tester for an Envato feature
  • Has collected 10+ items on Envato Market
  • Attended one of our Meetups around the world
+6 more
Dzinc says

This thread is now in › Item Discussion

543 posts
  • Has referred 10+ members
  • Has sold $10,000+ on Envato Market
  • Has collected 10+ items on Envato Market
  • Located in Slovakia
+3 more
LubosVolovar says

Hello, I think that reviewer’s message can’t be more clear. Your design is not bad, but ThemeForest is just packed with the same designs as yours. You must add something original.

From my point of view it definitely lacks colors, it looks very boring. I know that it can be changed and stuff, but it is not a good approach to show such generic style to customers. Also typography can be improved.

Good luck

3857 posts
  • Has been part of the Envato Community for over 4 years
  • Has collected 500+ items on Envato Market
  • Nominated Community Superstar of the month
  • Sells items exclusively on Envato Market
+1 more
charlie4282 says

Totally agree with PhantasiaAeterna – its too generic to the market and also is an identical name to an existing file. It is nice but needs to have something different. Good luck

406 posts
  • Has referred 1+ members
  • Has sold $1,000+ on Envato Market
  • Has collected 10+ items on Envato Market
  • Located in India
+2 more
drsankarl says

you might have to tie up with a web designer.

12 posts
  • Has been part of the Envato Community for over 2 years
  • Located in Australia
  • Has collected 1+ items on Envato Market
  • Sells items exclusively on Envato Market
cmsgods says

Hello, I think that reviewer’s message can’t be more clear. Your design is not bad, but ThemeForest is just packed with the same designs as yours. You must add something original.

From my point of view it definitely lacks colors, it looks very boring. I know that it can be changed and stuff, but it is not a good approach to show such generic style to customers. Also typography can be improved.

Good luck

This is very helpful advice, thank you. So what you’re saying is the theme is a little plain and needs some more pizzazz to make it stand out from the rest? More colours, perhaps a better slideshow with those corny parallax effects and a few other tweaks. I will regroup on this and see how things go.

I would also like to thank everyone else for their responses as well.

3857 posts
  • Has been part of the Envato Community for over 4 years
  • Has collected 500+ items on Envato Market
  • Nominated Community Superstar of the month
  • Sells items exclusively on Envato Market
+1 more
charlie4282 says

There is not anything “wrong” with the design it is just that there are too many others like it out there. As you rightfully said – make it unique and stand out. Add some cool features and design elements and you should be good to go. Good luck

12 posts
  • Has been part of the Envato Community for over 2 years
  • Located in Australia
  • Has collected 1+ items on Envato Market
  • Sells items exclusively on Envato Market
cmsgods says

There is not anything “wrong” with the design it is just that there are too many others like it out there. As you rightfully said – make it unique and stand out. Add some cool features and design elements and you should be good to go. Good luck

Thank you Charlie. I can see where they are coming from, most themes that follow a similar layout have over-the-top parallax slider effects, CSS3 animations and very over-the-top additions. Call me old fashioned, but I see these elements which are considered the norm on Themeforest to be somewhat gimmicky and trend-following.

I can appreciate people like to be wow’d, but as a developer primarily there is nothing worse than digging through a theme littered with unnecessary CSS animations and severely poor code. I have bought numerous themes from my non-author account on here before and the number of times I’ve encountered poorly coded themes is astounding.

I feel as though I am on the cusp of something great here. The underlying framework is clean, easy to use and well-coded. As I said, I put a lot of effort into commenting every function and line of code so people can easily change things. I also added in a lot of hooks/filters so the theme can be used with child themes and functionality altered or overridden in the child theme with ease. I’ve considered not only the consumer but the developers who have to dig through the code to change things.

I am in the process of regrouping and will see how I can improve it. As much as it pains me, I think gimmicky things like parallax and layer sliders are features I need to consider. I’ve got this powerful framework just waiting to show-off, it’ll be one of the cleanest and well-coded themes on the marketplace when it’s eventually up.

Thanks for the kind words and unbiased feedback everyone.

by
by
by
by
by
by