@miyachi_hikari The problem here is that you can’t really call it an author’s “choice” to lower the price on their items. Most of them are forced to do so.
The concept on markets was that Envato creates a great environment for authors, advertises, sets prices according to your work quality (Yes, lower quality themes were priced lower and better themes were priced higher and it was an achievement to have a theme priced more), so authors can focus on creating products of quality available only on Theme Forest. Now authors lose motivation to create a genuinely good product, because you can spend so much time on it and once you hit the market with a fair price set (let’s say standard 59$), buyers will be already used to 13$, 19$ prices for WordPress themes, even the top selling ones. You just won’t get far, even if you product is super cool.
I 100% agree that product itself is the main factor, but ADP has lowered product quality factor dramatically.
@Gareth_Gillman I was thinking absolutely the same as you when ADP was first launched, but how I was wrong. Almost no one has set the price higher, those who tried quickly got burned and lowered price back. Authors who considerably increased prices can be counted on fingers, and no one was going to leave due to controlled prices, because they knew that only Theme Forest can generate such income for them, we all know lots of stories of those who left and returned.
I was following developments closely and can say that ADP has crippled the market badly. Buyers are now going to new theme category for discounts, not for a good theme.
I have seen so many cases since ADP with really good theme launched at normal price point -> got low sales -> decreased price -> got some sales -> put normal price back after the end of promotion -> sales stopped -> lowered price again -> item is now on 3rd or 4th page, because of huge amount of lower quality themes released for very low price -> exposure is lost -> buyers won’t find the product anymore.
So now even if you created a good product, you would need to set ridiculously low price to get to the weekly top sellers list, but even when you get there, you will face the same problems. There are authors on top sellers page who sell their themes for pennies, authors who still continue to sell for Black Friday sale price, while they advertised the sale to last only for couple of days. Why? Because everyone else does, and if they put their price back now, they will lose their spot in top list (if you still think that price does not matter and only quality does, check out how some authors dumped price and got 5x sale numbers, and those who did not lower price lost their positions), and they are so afraid of it.
What ADP did is it made authors afraid to sell their product for a fair price and made a market look like some backyard sale.