2016 in review

It is that time of year again! As in years past, I like to look back on the previous twelve months and see how we did. In this year’s review, I will share revenue numbers, challenges, achievements, insights, and more about my business building and selling WordPress plugins.

WordPress Page builder plugins: a critical review

Page builders are everywhere and new ones are popping up every month. I have always had a strong dislike for page builder plugins as they frequently cause compatibility problems with other plugins. To ensure I wasn’t unjustly biased, I decided to review as many page builders as I could manage to determine if they are really all that bad.

Rebuilding a dying product

Four and a half years ago, I released Restrict Content Pro on Code Canyon.net. It was not my first big plugin, nor even the second, but it was the first one that I developed a more intimate relationship with. I heavily relied on the plugin for my own site and thus had a greater commitment to it than the large plugins that came before. For the first two years, the plugin thrived. I updated it constantly and continued to push it further and further. In 2014, however, I began to lose touch with the plugin as my other two big projects, Easy Digital Downloads and AffiliateWP, dominated more and more of my time.

I continued to let Restrict Content Pro dwindle for nearly two years before making a decision. I had several options. I could let it die a slow, drawn out death, I could sell it, or I could work to bring it back to life and let it kick ass again.

The monster that is a poor database schema

Step back in time two, three, four, or even 10 years and take a look at the development decisions you made then. What do you notice about them? Unless you are a one-in-a-million statistic, you probably look at those past decisions and say to yourself what was I thinking?! Why did I do it that way?! Welcome to the real world of actual development.

Hardships and victories in four years of eCommerce

Four years ago, I started out on a journey to build an eCommerce plugin for myself so that I could sell a few of the plugins I was building. A plugin to sell plugins, how meta. As with most of the projects I choose to dedicate my time and energy to, Easy Digital Downloads was built for me by me but in such a way that others could make use of it if they wished. Today, Easy Digital Downloads is installed on over 50,000 websites, has reached nearly one million downloads, and has grown to a sustainable business that supports the livelihood of an ever-growing team comprised of full time employees and active contractors.

AffiliateWP: two years later

Two years ago I wrote a post on this site to introduce my latest plugin, AffiliateWP. The plugin quickly became a staple in my company’s product portfolio and has done quite well for us. Today marks the second anniversary of our version 1.0 release so I would like to take a few minutes to look back on some of the highlights and the journey of building one of my most successful plugins.

Be a little selfish

Every few months some thought strikes me and I cannot get it out of my head. Recently it was the importance of finding a balance between generosity and being selfish.

Easy Content Types acquired by ThemeIsle

A few weeks ago I announced that my Easy Content Types plugin was available for purchase. After five years of maintaining the plugin, I felt it was time to find a new home for the plugin where it would be properly cared for and developed. Today I’m thrilled to announce that the plugin has been acquired and is now under new management.

2015 year in review

2015 has been an interesting year for me in so many ways. Partly because it’s been supremely successful for the business and partly because it has been exceptionally challenging (and superb) on a personal level.

Selling Easy Content Types

In early 2011 I released Easy Content Types, an advanced plugin that provides a graphical interface for creating post types, taxonomies, and metaboxes in WordPress. The plugin was originally released on Code Canyon.net and did quite well there. It was in the weekly top sellers nearly every week that it resided there. Then in February, 2013, the plugin was moved to this site and was one of the first plugins used to stock my own small plugin shop. Now, with some sadness and great happiness at the same time, it is time for Easy Content Types to find a new home.

An open letter on side projects

I love side projects. They are what wake me up at night with excitement; they are what causes light bulbs to flash on inside my brain while walking my dog; they are what motivate me when all other motivation is lost; they are the distraction from my worries; they are a fundamental part of who I am as a developer; and they are an integral part to the success of so many of this world’s greatest developers and business owners.

Restrict Content Pro’s new website and v2.4

Restrict Content Pro has just been updated to version 2.4 to introduce two major new features and a few bug fixes. Along with the version 2.4 release, a new website for Restrict Content Pro was quietly launched a couple of weeks ago.

Nikhil Vimal adopts Front End Registration and Login Forms plugin

Several years ago, I wrote a tutorial on how to create custom registration and log in forms. That tutorial was shortly after transformed into a complete plugin that has been sold on this site┬ásince. It was a fun and popular plugin but over the last few years it was lost focus from me, primarily due to the growth of my other projects. Today I’m thrilled to announce the plugin has a new owner that will keep it updated and breath new life into it.

One year since I stopped going it alone

Since early child hood, I have always been a do-it-myself individual. It is an attitude I attribute largely to the way my father raised me and my brother. The three of us were always working around the farm making repairs and handling new construction. We did our own plumbing, electrical work, mowing, cleaning, car maintenance, and everything else. My family was reasonably well off financially so we could have hired plumbers, electricians, mechanics, etc, if something needed built or repaired, but that just was not in our nature.

Review: Google Maps Builder

Google Maps Builder Pro from WordImpress is an excellent plugin that lets you easily buildy advanced (or simple) Google Maps. The superb flexibility and control it includes is awe inspiring. Checkout my in-depth video review for more.

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