Themeforest is the largest WordPress theme marketplace which currently sells over 6000 themes and HTML templates. Users can upload themes to sell and Themeforest takes a percentage of each sale, the percentage is based on how many sales you've had - the more you sell - the higher your percentage. The marketplace enables many freelancers and companies to work full time on their themes while Themeforest takes care of the marketing and sales - some of the best selling items have made hundreds of thousands of dollars. Envato, the parent company also run a number of other marketplaces for selling digital goods - Graphic River for graphic files and Audio Jungle for sound files.
These types of marketplace can be very lucrative if you can acquire the memberbase to kick start them - you need buyers and authors to make them sucessfull. A new theme which allows you to create this type of website with the exact features that Themeforest has is called WP-Forest with the following features :
- Multi Language System
- Built In Affiliate Platform
- Built In Deposit System
- User Submission From Front End
- Multi Currency System
- Paypal Integration
- Unlimited Items
- Integrated SEO
In this review I will be taking a look at this theme & how to install, configure it.
Installing The Theme
Upload the theme you receive after purchase and then visit “Appearance” > “Themes” to activate it :
Once the theme is activated, you will see two new menu items – "Market Items" and "WP-Forest".
Configure The Theme
Visit the "WP Forest" menu item and you will see where you can begin setting up the basic options, things like Logo, Favicon, reCaptcha API keys, Feedburner URL, and you can exclude pages / categories from the menu.
Down the side are links for more options, the next one is "Payment" and here you can enter your Paypal details, Bank details and Moneybooker details :
The affiliate section allows you to set the affiliate percentage, how long the tracking cookie lasts for and to award the affiliate fee on a person's first deposit :
The authors section has some options for requiring admin approval of new items, author's earning percentage and minimum withdrawal amount :
Finally you have sections for SEO settings and adding codes to the header or footer (for analytics code etc).
Statistics and Logs
Under the "WP-Forest" menu are other links for - Withdrawal Requests, Transaction History, Affiliate Transactions and Bank Transactions. These will list the various things as they occur on your site, so you have a record of them here. The other menu link is "User Options" if you visit this, it lists every member on your site and an option to make them featured, it also lists their account balance.
The other menu item the theme added is called "Market Items" and this is where you have control over all the items which are submitted and sold on your site. It is created with custom post types so you have the usual option to create categories and tags which will apply to the marketplace items only (separate from main blog). If you visit "Add Item" you will see it looks like the normal post writing screen :
Enter your title, description and pick categories and tags as normal, then underneath you will see some extra options for things like: Price, Small Image, Large Image, Download link, Demo link, Free File, Featured File etc :
Of course, users can submit their themes from the front-end of the site :
This seems like a pretty sound theme, functionality-wise - I have been keeping an eye out for a theme or plugin which adds this capability for a while now as I'd like to use a site of mine. Saying that, its a litte rough around the edges - the design is far too close to Themeforest's and I think that anyone who used this theme as it is will run into problems with them because of the design similarities. If you used this theme, I would invest a bit of time changing the design around to make it more unique.
The other thing I noticed is there are quite a few spelling mistakes, this is because the creator is not a native english speaker - they stand out a mile for me though and make the product not look as professional. Im going to go ahead and list them here so he can correct them :
- = Favicon Url
- Diposit Amount = Deposit Amount
- = Cookie Life
- diposit = deposit
- Item Submition = Item Submission
- Trackings = Tracking
The functionality is almost spot-on, has everything you need to start this sort of site, one thing I would like to see - The author's percentage only allows you to put one amount, I would like to see a sliding scale like Themeforest uses where the more a person sells, the better their percentage rate. I dont think this should be too hard to implement.
So overall - a good start, certainly the only theme on the market that provides this functionality. With a bit of a polish up on the back end and maybe some design changes on the front end, this could be an amazing theme. The author should look at the themes provided by App Themes to see the level to aim for.