Review Process - To Be Reviewed

I’ve been an Envato user for more than a decade. My experience as a buyer has always been a pleasant one. With exceptional quality items that have undergone extensive review, I’m always sure that whatever I purchase on any of the Envato platforms will be of the highest standard and quality.

My experience as an author, on the other hand, has been quite the opposite. I’ve recently decided, in light of recent economic conditions, that I’d join the Envato author community as a means of generating some passive income, as I’m sure is the primary reason for many other authors.

Apart from pretty generic and ambiguous instructions prior to submission, there’s very little in the way of feedback after your item(s) have undergone the review process. You’re left to either “guess” the reason for rejection or scan through the relevant forum threads to get an inkling or indication of the rejection reason.

Envato’s entire premise, existence, and success solely rely on authors, coders, and artists alike, yet they seemingly see absolutely no value in providing constructive or informative feedback to authors, to the extent that it almost comes across as an elitist platform with no intentions of backing or supporting its ever-growing community, unless perhaps you’ve managed to attain some level of credibility from your years of authorship (attributed to perhaps a more lenient review process in previous years).

Providing informative feedback, in the very least, would help authors to decide to either continue on making improvements and changes as per feedback; or scrap the project altogether and not waste precious time and effort going back and forth in the hopes that your items may reach a point of passing the review process.

Many of the forum topics outline several possible reasons for rejection, but it’s entirely up to the author to drill down into those possibilities and guess which one (or combination of them) might bear reason for having your item(s) rejected. From “perhaps an undesired category” to “great idea, poor execution”, the responses to other authors are either community driven or extremely vague.

This, in conjunction with exceptionally long review times (10 days? ), adds to the frustration of authors. The entire review process is sorely lacking and can be easily streamlined if Envato lifted so much as a finger to work hand-in-hand with authors—the very people who aid their success.


I agree with your take on this issue as shown in your post. I found it incredibly frustrating recently to provide an 8 clip family of clips as individual files for stock video recently, only to see 5 out of the 8 be accepted. The rest, apparently, had a “Quality Issue”. Which was not only the summation of why those clips were rejected, but actually the entirety of the reason. And if it doesn’t make sense to you, then don’t worry, your not alone as I’m not sure of the reason either.
I’m happy to accept that a clip may not be up to snuff, but I find it more and more obvious that Envato doesn’t HAVE a set bar for quality, and thus it is left up to their reviewers to be highly subjective with their rulings. I’ve even had Music content be rejected purely because “I didn’t like the sound.” This was quite literally what was told to me, and isn’t exactly objective feedback is it. It was many years ago, but it appears things really haven’t changed that much.

All in all, I’ve decided to go non-exclusive because I’ve had it. Adobe Stock took all my clips no problem BTW.

Hi @Rookie26, I understand it can be frustrating, and I’m not sure exactly how the review process works on Envato’s end, but I do know that they receive hundreds if not thousands of submissions every day, so it takes a while to get through them. If they were to leave detailed/unique feedback on every submission, the review times would increase by a massive amount.

Usually, if there’s only a small reason like it was submitted to the wrong category, a file was the wrong size or named incorrectly, or some slight formatting is off, then they will let you know exactly what you need to do and allow you to resubmit it.

If there are a bunch of reasons, such as poor design fundamentals, poor colour choice, or even that it’s too simple/generic, requiring quite a lot to make it acceptable, then it will be rejected without a detailed explanation.

A lot of people, including myself when I first started, think they’re a lot better than they actually are, that’s just a fact, so it’s harder to see where the flaws are. My advice would be to take the rejection as an opportunity to learn, really dive into it and figure out what could be wrong, maybe the spacing is off, maybe the font choices aren’t the best, it could be a million things. Stay away from just copying what others have done, find your strengths, and try something different.

@XioxGraphix Thanks for your constructive and valuable feedback.

I fully agree, consider and appreciate the fact that there are many elements that attribute to either a delayed review process and the several possibilities of rejection.

I’m also in agreement with the premise of using it as an opportunity to learn from your mistakes and to further develop your skillset to better standards.

It’s not so much the fact that an item gets rejected - that, I think many of us can live with. It’s more so to do with having some sort of direction in terms of how one could remedy these, even if merely a reference point towards what primarily constituted the decision of rejecting your item(s).

By no means can one expect individualized feedback for a rejection, given the plethora of submissions I imagine they have to work through - though, for the sake of referencing some starting point, would it perhaps not already be perceived as valuable if an author could get an indication - even in the slightest?

Consider perhaps the following:

Envato reviews an item and concludes that it’s subject to rejection. As part of the review process, the reviewer could possibly select one (or a combination of) categor(y/ies) that contributed towards the rejection. For example:

  • Design principles (alignment, balance, proportion, quality etc.)
  • Category (category relevance)
  • Description (relevancy, accuracy etc)
  • Files (outdated format, naming convention etc.)
  • Other (third party dependencies, licensing etc.)

In scope of a review process, relevant rejection reason categories may be selected, that which upon rejecting an item, may provide an author with a good starting point to remedy the possibilities considered or perhaps even scrap the project altogether - and I’d imagine it’d probably take an extra couple of seconds as part of the review process.

Something this elementary could be extremely helpful to authors - and quite possibly maintain a level of understanding, standards and author morale.

Giving general feedback was suggested a while back but it would not work - there are too many people submitting who would not be able to take feedback and address it sufficiently.

This will lead to increased frustration esp if an author thinks they have resolved the problem in the feedback, and quite possibly a higher volume of submission reviews.

Right, this topic has been brought up many times over the years, and the review process has even been changed a few times as well.

On your point of different rejection reasons, they already do that to a certain extent. If it’s Category, Description, or File related, it will likely be “soft rejected” with the reason detailed and what needs to be done to fix it. If it’s Design Principles related, then it’s “hard rejected” with a message saying that it doesn’t meet the required quality.

@charlie4282 thanks for your input.

That makes complete sense, however I suppose the rejection type criteria would be a great way of indicating further consideration to your item(s).

For example, a hard reject would constitute no further consideration - which would prevent subsequent submissions.

If rejection categor(y/ies) are provided and it’s a soft rejection, then certainly a subsequent submission (perhaps with a limit of 3) may be considered.

These factors in consideration, rather than a blind rejection without context, would be extremely helpful and streamline the review and submission processes.

@XioxGraphix @charlie4282

This, in its entirety, is the email I’ve received upon concluding the review:

This is a screenshot of my author dashboard:

There’s no guidance or direction, on both the email and the author dashboard, other than my own initiative to scan the Author Forums, that may provide clarity on such a rejection.

And whether a hard rejection or a soft rejection, as pointed out already, a host of reasons may exist that constituted the rejection.

I’m certain there’s plenty to be desired in terms of subjective criticism and critique - and perhaps a tough pill to swallow for most; unless one can learn from your mistakes and establish an opportunity for yourself to improve. However, how does one do that if there’s no real understanding of your flaws or shortcomings as perceived by and in comparison to others.

Happy to have the attached designs be public btw - it was my attempt to feel the proverbial water in terms of the submission and review process.