If you are a theme provider, either free or commercial there wasn’t really a way to track the usage of your themes once they were released out in to the wild – you could track download numbers but not real usage numbers. That’s where the new startup PressTrends comes in, they launched earlier this month and provide a service which tracks where your themes are installed and some other interesting things like how many posts have been published, number of plugins being used, WordPress version, theme version etc.

I released a theme yesterday and included PressTrends with my theme so I thought I would show you how the service works.

Visit PressTrends »

Adding a Theme

Once you have signed up for the service and logged in, you will see an “Add Theme” link after clicking that you provide your theme’s name, a demo URL and choose a category for it :

After you have done that, you are given some code which you have to add to your theme’s functions.php file and also add in your API keys. Once thats done your theme is ready to start tracking usage stats.

Viewing Stats

On the homepage you will see all your themes listed and can click through to a stats page for each one. The stats tracked are :

  • Average number of posts published
  • Average number of comments
  • Average number of plugins used
  • Total sites using your theme
  • Sites that have used your theme historically
  • Abandonment rate
  • Sites by theme version
  • Sites by WordPress version

Conclusion

Im a stats junkie so anything that provides me with more data Im going to like anyway but this is a really cool service – the interface is really well designed and actually implementing the code is a piece of cake. I can see once you have historical stats the data can become usefull, you will be able to see which themes perform the best and which are abandoned and use that for building future themes. I’d like to see how this is monetised in future – probably by charging for monitoring more themes or for charging more depending on how popular your themes are.

So give PressTrends a go if you are a theme author who’d like to monitor your theme usage more accurately.


Author:

Oliver Dale is the founder of Kooc Media, a small internet company based in the UK. Kooc Media runs several high-profile websites including WPLift, ThemeFurnace and DesignersTalk.

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One Comment

  1. Presstrends is awesome, both the functionality but the UI is amazing as well.

    Just make sure you let people know that your theme’s are using this due to privacy issues.

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