WordPress Plugin Business Blueprint: How to Build, Launch, and Sell Your First Plugin
Are you planning to start your own WordPress plugin business? If so, then you have landed on the right place. This article is exceptionally designed to give you a thorough WordPress plugin business idea from planning to selling a plugin.
As you know, WordPress is a golden opportunity for every entrepreneur who wants to build their product and sell too. It has a colossal marketplace as well as an ocean of consumers. But as a newbie, it’s not easy to adapt this environment.
We are familiar with the hassle that one has to consider to build a product and adapt the marketplace without any prior planning. That is why today, in this blog post, we will show you how you can plan, develop, and sell your WordPress plugin or theme with ease.
How WordPress Always Ready to Pay Off Your Hard Work
As you know, WordPress dominates the CMS market share in a big margin. According to W3techs, WordPress has 61.8% of the CMS market share that is more than all other systems (eg, Drupal, Joomla) combined.
A survey published by Netcraft shows that around 35% of the internet is powered by WordPress. Considering that the number of total active websites is estimated at over 1.3 billion that means that around 455,000,000 websites are using WordPress right now.
And surprisingly these numbers are going crazy day by day. You will be amazed to know that last year,
- 277 Wordcamps took place in 41 hosting countries.
- 687 Meetup events took place.
- WordPress.tv videos published increased by 26.7%.
So, we can say that there is no looking back in the WordPress industry. It is still beneficial for newbies if you are ready with your WordPress plugin business blueprint.
WordPress Plugin Business Blueprint: Everything You Need to Know
Selling WordPress plugin isn’t something that you can just start and rule. It needs your dedication, hard work, passion, and more importantly proper plan. So, here is our plan to start a WordPress plugin business.
- Build WordPress Plugin
- Launch the Plugin
- Start Selling the Plugin
The whole process is the sum of these four points. Now, we will take a further look at each of the topics.
Apart from this article, watch this tutorial to be more clear about the topic.
1. Build a WordPress Plugin
The first phase of the WordPress plugin business blueprint is the building or implementing stage of a plugin or theme. It consists of a few more technical points.
Decide What You Want to Build
This is the first step to get started with your WordPress plugin business. Before doing anything else, decide what you want to build. For that reason, choose a niche precisely and you must stick to a particular niche. For choosing a perfect niche,
- Identify your interests and passions
- Identify problems you can solve
- Research your competitors
- Determine the profitability of your niche
Once you are ready with these answers, you can go forward to your next phase.
Research the Market & Find the Gap of Existing Products
Don’t just build a product because you know how to code, start with a need. What is a need that real people have that you can fulfill? If another product already exists for that need, then find a unique position. If the other product has all the features under the sun, go for lightweight and do one thing really well.
Eventually, make sure, your product has the specialty to serve something unique that yet no other products offered already.
Follow the Latest WordPress Coding Standard
Coding standards help avoid common coding errors, improve the readability of code, and simplify modification. They ensure that files within the project appear as if they were created by a single person.
Following the standards means anyone will be able to understand a section of code and modify it, if needed, without regard to when it was written or by whom. It saves time while implementing WordPress products and makes your product comparatively faster.
Ensure Software Licensing
Once a user gets their hands on your Pro version, if you don’t have any licensing mechanism in place there’s nothing you can do to prevent them from using it on multiple sites, sending it to friends, share it on Facebook, or even uploading it as a torrent to the internet.
If you want to protect your paid offering and not base your licensing only on trust, you need to have a licensing management layer in place, making sure only paid customers will have access to your paid software.
Make Sure a Hassle-free Payment Procedure
If you want to start a theme or a plugin business, you’ll have to charge money. There are so many different aspects and moving parts to accept payments that it’s hard to know where to begin.
The simplest solution would be to sign-up with a payments gateway that offers a standalone checkout solution
Set Pricing Plans
Adding pricing plans for the pro version is the final phase before jumping into the second stage. Pricing plans can be,
You can categorize each of the pricing plans into different ways like,
You are not done yet. Now decide what facilities you want to provide under each of the plans.
- Conduct research on similar plugin pricing in the market
- Find out the proper value of your plugin
- Analyze your investment (cost, overhead, etc.)
- Understand the pricing psychology
Thus you can set pricing plans for your WordPress products.
2. Launch Your Plugin
After building your WordPress products, let’s focus on how gorgeously you can launch that product. If your launching can create a bang, it will outreach more people easily. After testing and launching your product, do the following.
List the Free Version to WordPress.org and other Repositories
Listing your plugin to WordPress repository leads your tools to get free downloads and reviews. As most of the freemium plugin do so, it enhances the chance for generating premium user. When people getting used to your plugin, it makes them believe that the pro-version may help them achieve more.
The best way to sell the free version of your plugin is by listing it to the WordPress official repository- WordPress.org and other repositories like WPHive. WordPress.org is the most sought-after place where every WordPress user visits frequently. It has more than 1.5 billion plugin downloads.
Add Your Plugin to a Reputed Marketplace
When you want to sell the pro version of your products, make sure you are familiar with the popular WordPress product selling marketplace.
You may already know the top marketplaces like Codester, Creative Market, ThemeSnap, CodeCanyon, TemplateMonster Marketplace, and ThemeForest. Choose any of the marketplaces to sell your WordPress plugins or themes.
Host It on Your Site
After listing your plugin to a marketplace and WordPress repository, you can even host it to your website too. Create a sales page and landing page with sales text to let people know about your products.
Write regular blogs based on your product to attract traffic towards your site. Thus you can get potential customers on your site and sell your product from your site too.
3. Start Selling Your Plugins
After launching the products, it’s time to start selling them. For selling the product, you must follow a marketing guide to reach out to as many people as possible.
Leverage the Content Marketing Strategy
We know the term “content is king,” and it’s true. The upward demand for the content proves the term.
The recent January 2020 core update acknowledges the utmost necessity of quality content. 91% of B2B marketers are relying on content marketing. While 86% of B2C marketers consider content marketing as their prime strategy.
You can get this job done in several ways like,
- Writing niche-specific blog posts
- Providing video tutorials
- Accepting guest blogs
- Using social media
Feel the Power of Email Marketing
“Is email marketing dead?” Hell, no!
Research shows that more than 5.5 billion email accounts are being used globally. And it seems to be unstoppable as many people are relying on email due to business communication.
Another research on email marketing revealed that more than 92% of adults use email which is 72% of the entire internet users. Now you can really feel the urge of email marketing.
So, you should feel the power of Email marketing and leverage it to increase your sales.
Provide Sale Off Discount
Discount attracts customers. It’s a psychological action. Provide discounts based on the festivals with a limited time boundary. Black Friday, Christmas Day, Eid, and New Year is a good reason to offer the sale off discount.
You can also run a giveaway program if you want to surprise your customers. Believe me, as much as you give your customers, in return, you will get more than you think.
Once you are done with your product building and launching, that doesn’t mean you have ticked all the checkboxes of your WordPress plugin business blueprint steps. Even after starting selling the product, still you have something to ensure for getting better output.
Provide Essential Documentation and Tutorials
A well-elaborative document helps your users to understand your product deeply. After developing your product you need to create a clear documentation describing how to set up and configure your product easily. It’s really frustrating to buy a premium plugin but having no clear idea of how to edit that plugin.
You need to show the technical functionality and aspects of your plugin. For example, you must include a product installation doc, detailed documentation of different features, etc.
Ensure Top-notch Support
Support is a serious issue. You can take your business to a whole new level providing strong support to your users and thus getting high reviews and ratings.
When starting a WordPress plugin business, people normally expect support from you. Even if you highlight in capital letters that there’s “NO SUPPORT,” customers will expect you to help them out and solve the issues they are experiencing.
Remember, “No Support” costs you fewer customers. So, after launching your product, make sure you have always a support team to take care of your customers’ feedbacks, complaints, and issues.
Bonus: Don’t You Get Expected Sales? This Point Is for You
After doing everything that you were told, if you don’t get the expected sales, then it’s time to analyze your plugin deactivation data. So, you can get a clear idea of what is going on with your WordPress products.
How will you get your plugin deactivation data?
Well, there is Appsero to help you out from this situation. Apart from deactivation data, it will also help you to get,
- Useful user insight: Plugin or theme deactivation reasons.
- License management: Whether you use EDD/WooCommerce/Envato, you can manage all the licenses from one place.
- Push auto-deployment: You place any upgrade directly from your Git account Github/Bitbucket to WordPress.org.
- Upgrade all the update to your verified users just in one click
- Deactivation reasons analyzer: You’ll get an email notification immediately if any user deactivates your plugin.
- Integration with different solutions
So, try Appsero now to find out why you aren’t getting your expected sales as well as manage & deploy your WordPress plugin easily.
Over to You
Following and completing the WordPress plugin business blueprint is the beginning of your journey. Because only by following all these points won’t make you profitable, instead, you should always keep your consistency, hard work, motivation, and passion up. Thus you will be able to head to a profitable business.
If you ever followed a WordPress plugin business blueprint for your business, do share your experience with us. And, don’t forget to give your feedback on our blueprint through the comment box below.
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