SellWP Is A Managed Solution For Selling WordPress Products

SellWP is a brand new service created by John Turner, who is also the developer of SeedProd. The goal of the service is to eliminate the stress and hassles of selling WordPress products allowing the developer to concentrate on the product itself. Some of the most difficult aspects of running a business such as licensing, memberships, refunds, secure download links, and refunds are handled through SellWP.

Just A Few Of The Features SellWP Offers Sellers
Just A Few Of The Features SellWP Offers Sellers

SellWP Is Not A Marketplace, But A Managed Solution For Selling Products

While I initially thought it would be a marketplace to sell themes and plugins, Turner informed me it’s not a marketplace at all. “The user markets the theme or plugin on their site and when the customer clicks buy now, it takes them to the hosted solution. The customer and license is then managed through SellWP.” While marketplaces can take anywhere between 20-50% of a sale, SellWP only takes 1.9% + 15¢ per charge in addition to the Stripe Fee.

SellWP Dashboard
SellWP Dashboard

By outsourcing the product management side of the business, you’re counting on the fact the site will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If SellWP experiences downtime, it could result in lost sales. The site is hosted through Fortrabbit, a service dedicated to providing developers great PHP hosting environments. SellWP is transparent about the fact that their uptime is dependent upon the uptime of Fortrabbit.

SellWP Takes Most Of The Worry Out Of Selling Products

Sellers don’t have to worry about being locked into the service since they can obtain CSV files containing customers, orders, licenses, products and coupons. The service also creates daily, weekly, and monthly backups hosted at an offsite location. SellWP takes care of SSL certificates by using CloudFlare’s flexible SSL certificate. This certificate is used to secure the seller’s shopping cart and membership areas. Back filling of customer data is not currently supported but will be available in an upcoming update.

SellWP Coupon Manager
SellWP Coupon Manager

Turner compares SellWP to VaultPress in that both are managed solutions to a problem:

If you want WordPress backups you can use BackupBuddy, a self managed solution, or VaultPress a managed solution. SellWP is a managed solution for selling WordPress products.

I asked Turner if he will only allow GPLv2 or compatible licensed products to be sold through the site. His response: “Yes, I believe in the GPL and intend to enforce it in the system.  The terms are actually from WordPress’ boiler plate terms but this will be added once I get some time.

If you want to see what the service looks like behind the scenes, watch the following video.

Try It Free Until April 1st

SellWP is another service in a long line of managed solutions for WordPress. I think what the service has to offer will appeal to a lot of developers, especially those who don’t already have an established system in place to sell their products. The service is free to try til April 1st, 2014. Once the beta ends, sellers will be charged the standard fees per transaction.

Does SellWP look like something you would use? Will existing sellers outsource this area of their business to a third party? Place any feedback you have in the comments as John Turner will be monitoring them to answer any questions you have.

8 Comments


  1. It looks good but I don’t think the problem that it’s supposed to solve is that big that you would need a managed solution for it.

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  2. Marketplace fees are high because you’re paying for exposure. As anyone entering the plugin development business can attest to, marketing is probably the hardest part.

    That being said, SellWP seems like a neat service and I hope it succeeds. I think the biggest hurdle is adjusting the fees model to compare more favorably to Easy Digital Downloads + Software Licensing add-on.

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  3. Thanks the write up Jeff and for the feedback everyone.

    @christophermccoy
    I’m not familiar with Sellwire so I’m not sure.

    @logikal16
    Yeah, this may change to a monthly subscription. Collecting feedback from users during the beta and this seems to be the consensus.

    I use it to sell my product so it was being built anyway, I don’t expect it nor intend for it to be my main product. I released it because it was a problem for me when I first started selling my plugin and figured others may find it useful.

    I just wished I could of outsourced the aspect of the ecommerce, license and membership management. There were lots of ways to sell digital downloads, but none dealt with the nuisances of managing the customer after the sale. So being a developer I built it.

    EDD had not been built when I first started selling my plugin, I remember Pippin was working on it. And for the record I think EDD is an awesome product, I just had a different approach.

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  4. If I understand correctly the actual fee per transaction is 1.9% + 2.9% + 15c + 30c.

    The tiny font used for “Per Charge in addition to the Stripe Fee” makes me suspicious. I like the features but why do they try to obfuscate the real cost?

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    1. Not trying to hide any thing, just offering the service I use to sell my plugin to others :)

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  5. The set of features is really impressive and it’s exactly what I’m looking for. Licensing an auto updates are definitely the ones I like the best.

    I know that it not supposed to be a marketplace but since it sells only WP products a simple search option would make it more attractive.

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