Product Tips

There’s literally hundreds of thousands of users utilizing PageLines as their WordPress framework of choice. I currently have 16 products selling on the store with another 2 under active development. The monthly checks from my sales, more than cover my rent (and them some). Next months check should be cracking 2K, take home (after PageLines takes their 30% cut).

2K a month, to have fun designing and programming whatever the hell you want. That my friends, is freedom, and I’m eating it up while I can. I’ve learned a few tricks along the way, and want to pass them on to whoever is reading this. Are you the next greatest store product developer for PageLines?

Demos

Your product demo is the most important thing you have, next to the actual product itself. You can have crap art for your screenshot, but if you have a stellar demo, that’s all that matters.

Do – create a site, with its own domain name, for your demos. Create a page template for a product, and repeat it with every demo. With one click you can have a fixed nav at the top, with links to the other product demos. Last but not least, provide a link to the actual product on the store so they can buy it. A well built demo will sell your product for you.

Don’t – host your demos on pagelines.me, or wordpress.com. You don’t have any control over uploading things like this, so stick to your own solution.

Art

Products in the store need 3 pieces of art at minimum. A screenshot.png, sized 300×225. A thumb.png sized 300×225. Tip: just copy and rename screenshot to thumb so you end up with screenshot.png, and thumb.png, both the same file. You’ll also need a splash.png, sized 700×350. The thumb is used on the main store front, and in searches. The splash.png is used on the main product page itself.

Do – create a unified brand for your art. This builds your personal brand on the store, which makes you identifiable.

Don’t – create a rainbow with comic sans, or use colors that makes your eyes bleed

Support

Quite honestly, I hate support. I don’t like folks who don’t read directions, or use common sense. It really bugs the hell out of me. However, I completely understand it, and make it a point to return queries in under 10 minutes if I’m available. Support for products is handled through the product page comments.

Do – be quick and polite with your responses. If after explanation, the user is still insists that there is a problem, ask them to email you their WordPress admin details and you’ll take a look. Honestly, 99.9% of support queries are taken care of in the comments within 10 minutes. I’ve only had to log into one install in a year.

Don’t – offer support through email. It’s not going to do anyone else, any good to be answering questions in a private email that others could benefit from. This is why it’s encouraged for support to be handled through the comments. If you’re product is built with clear instructions and is bug free, you’ll have little support queries. Most, will be questions on how it works, or suggestions for future updates.

Go Create

So what do you create? Great question. There are 3 areas to develop for; themes, plugins, and sections. Themes are your standard Worpdress child theme, as are plugins. Both are built to WordPress development standards, but built for PageLines. Sections, are exclusive to PageLines. Sections, are like pre-packeged pieces of coolness who’s code only executes on the pages they are put in. Sections also utilize the PageLines API, which makes building them a complete breeze (I have a tutorial that’s almost finished on how to build a basic section).

Themes are the most rewarding, as the norm is $50 a pop. However, they are the most risky to build, because you have to really hit the nail on the head with a theme. They also take the most time to build.

Plugins are a create all on their own, not utilizing the PageLines API at all. Plugins go for $20 a pop on average.

Sections in my opinion, are where the money is at, and is what I concentrate on the most. Sections can be anything from ways to show content, to sliders, galleries, custom post type sections, and more. They go for $15 a pop, sell the most, and are the easiest to create.

Whatever direction you decide to go, if you can at least manage to be great at those 3 things above, you should do just fine. I’m looking forward to seeing what you create!