Last year we announced that we would be adding WordPress as a category to Envato Elements sometime in 2017. Today we’re letting you know that we are working towards a target launch month of August/September and will soon begin to invite WordPress theme and plugin authors to participate.
Why WordPress Now?
Since it launched last August, Elements has been doing a lot of growing. Authors have continued to publish amazing content, taking the total collection from 5000 to 25,000 items. Subscriber numbers have followed a similar trajectory, passing 25,000 last week. And month on month, author earnings have increased on every metric (total, average, median and maximum author earnings).
New content is key to this positive trend. Fresh, quality items and new content types enable us to attract new subscribers and also make it more likely we can retain subscribers for a long time. When considering the options for the next new Elements content type, it’s hard to go past WordPress.
Envato is known for the quality and variety of its WordPress library. WordPress authors on ThemeForest and CodeCanyon have built a reputation for meeting the unique needs of customers with premium, high quality themes and plugins to ensure building a website is on trend and hassle-free.
Adding even a tiny piece of this market leading collection to Elements will contribute tremendous value to the subscription and bring us one step closer to establishing a reliable source of incremental earnings for authors. It will help give Elements a distinct competitive advantage now, which we believe will accelerate its growth trajectory.
What will the WordPress experience look like on Elements?
The challenge with WordPress in Elements is that there is a ton of complexity in doing it right. Many authors have questioned how WordPress fits into Elements in a way that’s sustainable for the authors involved.
Over the last few months we’ve been asking these questions too. We’ve always believed that with the right framework, WordPress items and WordPress authors would thrive on Elements. That belief remains, and here’s where we landed.
With the launch of WordPress, Elements will also be introducing annual plans. To get access to WordPress themes and plugins, subscribers will have to be on an annual plan (priced higher than the current average price of a theme - we’re still figuring out final pricing details, we’ll loop back when we know more).
Support is not available on items downloaded through Elements. No theme or plugin author will be required or expected to support Elements subscribers. To enable access to support, Elements themes and plugins will need to also be available on Envato Market. Elements subscribers must purchase a license for the item on ThemeForest or CodeCanyon if they’d like to obtain support. We believe this is one way to ensure that item availability on Elements is sustainable for the authors involved.
Even with both of these pieces in place, we know Elements won’t be right for some WordPress authors, and that’s OK. As with our graphics and templates categories, our plan is to launch with a very small group of authors who want to be involved. We’re reviewing existing portfolios and inviting authors who meet our invitation criteria, but participation is 100% voluntary.
Will WordPress on Elements impact Envato Market sales?
As we reported last year, overall Elements continues to be strongly incremental, meaning little to no negative impact on Market sales while generating an additional earnings stream for authors.
At this point we’ve also had some web-related content available on Elements for a long enough time to have a better understanding of the potential impact of Elements on Market sales of WordPress items. Perhaps the most relevant is CMS templates, as they are also code-based items that have similar requirements around updates, feature enhancements and ongoing support.
For CMS templates currently on Elements, the data shows that the sales for these items on Market have remained consistently on trend, with little to no cannibalization of Market sales. Additionally, when you add in their earnings from Elements, authors of these items are generally seeing incremental earnings growth of +10%.
We believe that when we add WordPress items to Elements we’ll see similar results for theme authors. The framework for WordPress we’ve developed also means it’s more likely for Elements to function as a traffic source for the ‘full service’ versions of items on ThemeForest and CodeCanyon.
Many WordPress authors are looking for ways to improve and increase same-customer earnings and find ways to transform their business from single-purchase customers to recurring customers. These are the reasons why we continue to look for new ways for authors to earn.
Envato Hosted, Envato Studio services, item support renewals, affiliate revenue and now Envato Elements all present avenues for authors to maximize their earnings across Envato and build a recurring revenue stream.
So, if bringing WordPress to Elements is the moment you’ve been waiting for, then get ready! In the coming days, our team will be reaching out to specific authors, inviting them to make their items available on Elements.
In the meantime, we’re here to answer any questions you might have. We’ll be providing batches of answers to questions every few days. Please make sure you’ve read through these as we’ll only be responding to questions not yet covered.
Helpful Info About Being an Envato Elements Author