Is there money to be made in plugins?

17 replies
What up warriors.

I am wondering is there money there to be made in wordpress softwares?

I'm getting into creating softwares and I want to start by creating wordpress plugins as there a good place to start I feel.

With so many plugins being for free I'm wondering can there a profit turned over in creating plugins?

Any advice at all would be really appreciated

Thanks
#made #money #plugins
  • Profile picture of the author ZaphodBeebleBrox
    There is Sean, but I would caution that creating a plugin for the sake of making money is the wrong approach.

    The most successful paid plugins are those that solve a specific need that either hasn't been solved yet, or has been solved previously, but can be enhanced and done better.

    As a side note: I'm a long time WP guy, and about to release a new plugin here in the next couple of days in fact. I've seen a lot of terrible plugins being offered here that do not follow the WP coding standards or the GPL. Many are just fluff with existing code lifted from somewhere else and re-packaged with some fancy pants marketing salesmanship.

    Please don't go that route. I'm not saying you would. I'm saying that doing so will only get you short term results. If you build a plugin that solves a problem in an interesting and original way, then you've got a long term business ahead of you.

    Gravity Forms would be a really good example of this...300,000 sites running their plugin. Not only is their code not hidden, but they built in hooks and filters to let others build on top of it. It's well-supported with constant updates and feature additions.

    That's the way to build plugins and profit from them...in my opinion
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    • Profile picture of the author Sean Doody
      Originally Posted by ZaphodBeebleBrox View Post

      There is Sean, but I would caution that creating a plugin for the sake of making money is the wrong approach.

      The most successful paid plugins are those that solve a specific need that either hasn't been solved yet, or has been solved previously, but can be enhanced and done better.

      As a side note: I'm a long time WP guy, and about to release a new plugin here in the next couple of days in fact. I've seen a lot of terrible plugins being offered here that do not follow the WP coding standards or the GPL. Many are just fluff with existing code lifted from somewhere else and re-packaged with some fancy pants marketing salesmanship.

      Please don't go that route. I'm not saying you would. I'm saying that doing so will only get you short term results. If you build a plugin that solves a problem in an interesting and original way, then you've got a long term business ahead of you.

      Gravity Forms would be a really good example of this...300,000 sites running their plugin. Not only is their code not hidden, but they built in hooks and filters to let others build on top of it. It's well-supported with constant updates and feature additions.

      That's the way to build plugins and profit from them...in my opinion
      The hope would be to create really good plugins that will genuinely help people and sell them at a really low price.

      Unlike a lot of people that come into IM I'm not here to make as much as I can by any means. I want to set up a long term business. Creating software just appealed to me more than other business models.

      Where could I find a copy of WP coding standards?
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      • Profile picture of the author ZaphodBeebleBrox
        Originally Posted by Sean Doody View Post

        The hope would be to create really good plugins that will genuinely help people and sell them at a really low price.

        Unlike a lot of people that come into IM I'm not here to make as much as I can by any means. I want to set up a long term business. Creating software just appealed to me more than other business models.

        Where could I find a copy of WP coding standards?
        So the first thing to do would be to get that plugin idea list going (or maybe you already have).

        Second, have a look here for coding standards:
        Writing a Plugin « WordPress Codex

        Third, although WF is a great place to sell your plugins for a low price, I would advise using it as a jumping off platform to get your sales going right away, then offer the plugin for sale on your own sites.
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        • Profile picture of the author Sean Doody
          Originally Posted by ZaphodBeebleBrox View Post

          So the first thing to do would be to get that plugin idea list going (or maybe you already have).

          Second, have a look here for coding standards:
          Writing a Plugin « WordPress Codex

          Third, although WF is a great place to sell your plugins for a low price, I would advise using it as a jumping off platform to get your sales going right away, then offer the plugin for sale on your own sites.
          I still have to get that idea list going

          Any tips?

          I have been having a look through the wordpress plugin directory a bit to see can I get any ideas going from there. Not ripping off previous plugins but more using them for inspiration.

          I'd plan to release the plugin as a wso but then move it to my own site and send all the traffic to that
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          • Profile picture of the author ZaphodBeebleBrox
            Originally Posted by Sean Doody View Post

            I still have to get that idea list going

            Any tips?

            I have been having a look through the wordpress plugin directory a bit to see can I get any ideas going from there. Not ripping off previous plugins but more using them for inspiration.

            I'd plan to release the plugin as a wso but then move it to my own site and send all the traffic to that
            Most of my plugin ideas are sparked from a "want" or "need" I've had with my client sites or my own sites. Also from using plugins out of the repository that are outdated and don't work anymore and need to be fixed.

            Our upcoming release was sparked by my business partner, and together we've worked on it for almost 4 months to make sure it works as intended, has an easy user interface, and has been tested properly.

            The cool thing that happened when working on this is that a whole new plugin/Saas business model idea was created, which will be our focus as soon as this plugin releases and we're sure our users are happy.

            That reminds me...customer support is huge and it should have just as much focus as the actual plugin usage...if not more
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      • Profile picture of the author wordpressmania
        Originally Posted by Sean Doody View Post

        The hope would be to create really good plugins that will genuinely help people and sell them at a really low price.

        Unlike a lot of people that come into IM I'm not here to make as much as I can by any means. I want to set up a long term business. Creating software just appealed to me more than other business models.

        Where could I find a copy of WP coding standards?
        WordPress org is the best place to know the coding standard... I myself will be releasing a plugin that has a real vale and is really rare in nature even there is no free plugin for that specific sector Just found 2 paid plugins but they cost a lot.... So I am expecting something big with my coming WSO
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  • Profile picture of the author CMGbz
    There is money to be made in almost anything online it all depends on how you market it.

    Here would be a great way for you to start with WP plugins...

    Make simple, useful plugins. 1 problem. 1 solution. Don't add 250 features. Don't give the customers options to change features or to change settings etc. Make it solve a simple, wide spread problem and price it low.

    For instance.... some plugins are like a suite where they handle 40 different things/problems... and cost $97 etc. Plus, they are built by huge teams and require a massive amount of support. You could take features of a suite and clone it to a simple plugin that just does 1 thing... and sell it for $7-27... then the more plugins you do you can package together... do fire sales, etc.

    Make 20-30 of these simple solutions that work and you'll have a raving list of buyers wanting you to release more solutions for them.

    Also, since your plugins will each only do 1 thing and 1 thing well... upgrading or updating to the new WP updates will be a breeze.

    Just something to thing about
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    • Profile picture of the author Sean Doody
      Originally Posted by CMGbz View Post

      There is money to be made in almost anything online it all depends on how you market it.

      Here would be a great way for you to start with WP plugins...

      Make simple, useful plugins. 1 problem. 1 solution. Don't add 250 features. Don't give the customers options to change features or to change settings etc. Make it solve a simple, wide spread problem and price it low.

      For instance.... some plugins are like a suite where they handle 40 different things/problems... and cost $97 etc. Plus, they are built by huge teams and require a massive amount of support. You could take features of a suite and clone it to a simple plugin that just does 1 thing... and sell it for $7-27... then the more plugins you do you can package together... do fire sales, etc.

      Make 20-30 of these simple solutions that work and you'll have a raving list of buyers wanting you to release more solutions for them.

      Also, since your plugins will each only do 1 thing and 1 thing well... upgrading or updating to the new WP updates will be a breeze.

      Just something to thing about
      I like the sound of this.

      Could you give me an example of one of the 'suite' plugins?

      I have a guy willing to help me get it developed and that, I just need to come up with a good idea.

      And as far as the marketing goes I will be working hand in hand with my mentor Alex Jeffreys so that's very much covered
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      • Profile picture of the author ZaphodBeebleBrox
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      • Profile picture of the author CMGbz
        Originally Posted by Sean Doody View Post


        Could you give me an example of one of the 'suite' plugins?

        Sean,

        Check out the software xMarkPro - Ultimate Blog Network Management. It sells for $500 but it does tons of things and is very useful. It's not a plugin so much BUT you could take alot of those features and chunk them into simple plugins.

        xmarkpro.com/features/?route=features

        IE: It has a feature... Every 15 minutes automatically checks to ensure every domain is online via ping check, plus optionally ensures a pre-defined phrase exists on the home page to help against server errors, etc.

        A WP plugin that just did that 1 thing would sell easily for under $30 and there is a huge market for it. Lots of people have tons of sites and its tough to monitor if they are all up and if the page is there (ie: hasn't been hacked, hasn't been change, hasn't been deleted by the owner or host accidentally).
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  • Profile picture of the author johnben1444
    Certainly, you can make a lot of money from wordpress softwares and plugins.

    Just like everything, it depends on how you approach it.

    Here is my little advice:

    1. Ensure there is a market for it.

    2. If there is a competitor(s) check out what they are offering and do something better.

    3. Trust translate to sales in the marketing world. People will be skeptical putting plugins e.t.c on their money site due to security reasons. Try to buy their trust by getting famous.

    4. Don't just target the money, offer something that truly solve a particular problem, give for almost free and create the name for yourself.
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  • Profile picture of the author UMS
    One of the biggest issues with developing WP plugins (or any other software for that matter) is the support and maintenance.

    A lot of marketers hire someone to write the code for them and everything is fine for a while, then a new version of WP comes along which breaks the code and suddenly the owner of the software can't contact the original programmer and has to find someone else to fix the code. In the meantime you have a lot of impatient and angry customers who are only too willing to spread the word that your software and support is sub-standard.
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  • Profile picture of the author jvreview
    With high demand for wordpress plugin, it's a market worth your effort if you're really into it. Having reviewed many plugin, I know there're those focusing on creating plugin and sell as WSO and clickbank products. You do have to come up with something really useful - at least a lot of promising potential.
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  • Profile picture of the author mattyprimmer
    I would say it's a better approach to not expect to make money directly from the plugin, but to build trust, page rank, popularity, etc and your future developments or side projects would lead to you making money. You could also have the premium version of something - giving a few extra features.

    Obviously if it is a plugin that is needed, people will buy it, but if it's a big enough demand to make lots of money, I'd imagine someone else will just code the same thing and release it for free like the majority of the plugins.

    The only thing I pay for is custom functionality themes. Like turning Wordpress into something it wasn't intended to do.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy Fletcher
    Tons of money to be made in WP plugins. We've sold about $750,000 worth of plugins in the last 18 months. And that's ignoring all the extra money we've made affiliate promoting other stuff to our list of buyers.
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  • Profile picture of the author Leslie B
    You can make a lot of money with plugins, it's just a matter of knowing what the market needs, knowing what the market wants (which is not always the same), getting the right product created and marketing it correctly.

    Leslie
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  • Profile picture of the author SteveJohnson
    You asked about coding standards ... they are here: WordPress Coding Standards « WordPress Codex
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  • As long as there are free plugins that essentially solve the same issues as the plugins that you will sell then there will be very little money in that. The little money that you can earn will be attributable to people who have expendable finances and do not research the internet quite well.

    To have a bit more income from plugins that you create, make sure that the app you create doesn't exist yet (of course) or if it does, that it adds some sort of a special benefit. You could also do apps that respond to specific requests of people or specific demands. You can find ideas for apps through different forums found in the internet and it's just a matter of good research. You can either join a app creation race with other unknown players or work for people who ask specific apps from you. It's your choice and you can mix up some other strategies that you think up.

    Anyway, Good Luck!



    ~^_^~
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