This is a list of nice to have features on a marketplace, mainly from the authors’ point of view. I’ll update this article with new features if I have new ideas or in case other authors come up with suggestions. Sooo… stay tuned :)
How nice it would be if the authors would be able to collaborate. One of them does the design, another the coding / development and they can split the sales profits. The first marketplace which implemented more or less this feature is Mojo Themes. But, as you can see this is nothing more than a forum thread, on which authors announce their intention to collaborate with others.
On the other hand, when you use the upload a new product interface, there is a field where you can mention other two authors with which you’ve collaborated on the item you are about to upload.
The downside here is that the authors can’t protect themselves. Meaning that the authors don’t have a pre-agreement, approved by all the controbuting parts and the one of them which has the design and the files, can publish it as his own work. There is no instrument that protects all the co-authors. So – a big like for the idea goes to Mojo Themes, as Theme Forest (read my review) or Creative Market don’t have this feature. Though they should give it a second thought about the implementation.
Multiple Owners for an Item
This one results from the first feature. Why is it important? There are a lot of collaboration between authors happening on Theme Forest, Mojo-Themes (I don’t know about Creative Market). And the model on (at least) Theme Forest is: two authors team-up for creating a new product together. They register a new account to which both of them have access and on which they publish the product resulting from their collaboration .
This has the following disadvantages:
- Any of them can change the password and take all the credit and future income from the uploaded product
- They get the lowest starting payment rate (50% on Theme Forest), even if they have higher payment rates for their own accounts.
How I see this problem solved: an author can “sign” agreements with other authors, before start any collaboration. He does his part of work (let’s say design) and uploads it, the second author does the development and uploads it and he publishes the product specifying that this is a product based on the agreement the authors have. The agreement contains the revenue split percentage on which the authors agreed. And each author gets his cut from the sale based on his own account payment rate (which can be more than 50% from each sale).
An in case one of the authors publishes by himself the theme without specifying the collaboration, the other author can report that having the agreement with uploaded design as a proof. I am not saying that this is 100% secure, but it is better than what it is now on Mojo Themes. And way better than what doesn’t exist at all on Theme Forest or Creative Market.
Providing a way to authors to collaborate, would result in better and more complex products from which the buyers would be able to profit.
Set Your Own Price
I understand that this isn’t a superficial to approach matter. And it was widely discussed before (see for example Mike McAlister’s article and Collis Ta’eed’s article regarding the pricing aspect). But, my personal opinion is that the authors should be able to setup their own prices, at least from the following reasons:
- It’s their work and they can decide better how much it values, knowing it in it’s smallest detail.
- Each author or even team of authors have different expenses on creating a theme.
- Each theme has different options and levels of complexity.
- Each platform (Drupal, WordPress, Joomla, etc.) have their specifics when it comes down to creating a theme. And themes for certain platforms are of course harder to create compared to other platforms.
- The market will dictate the price – meaning that in case somebody asks $1000 for a theme, he won’t have any sales and he’ll adjust the price.
- The price is a powerful marketing tool to which authors must have access.
At the moment, the only big marketplace which lets its authors set their own prices for their products is Creative Market.
Price Discounts & Coupon Codes
A nice feature to have. And it has connection with the previous feature. Price discounts are a great on-marketplace feature. And coupon codes could be used by authors to do some external advertising.
These two, in my opinion, are great and powerful marketing tools. Though neither Theme Forest, Mojo Themes nor Creative Market have implemented it.
It would be great if authors could setup bundles consisting from several products they own and set an attractive price for it. That could increase sales, without having to add more products. This way both, the marketplace and the authors would have to benefit.
Club Membership Subscriptions
One of the ways a themes shop generates their incomes is Club Membership Subscription. What does that mean? They set a one-time price for all their themes and a monthly subscription fee. It looks like this on wpzoom:
So, my opinion is that it would be great for authors if they could setup their own club on the marketplace with membership subscription.
Dear theme authors, please comment and let people know which other features you would like to have on the marketplace you are selling your digital products on.