In addition to the WooCommerce third party developer rate increase, I discovered something else that isn’t particularly consequential, but is interesting nonetheless.
It turns out that WooCommerce has made a slight mistake in its payouts to extension developers for a few years. We can call it an Accidental Office Space Maneuver. Here’s the bulk of the email they sent to partners:
We are writing to let you know that we discovered an error in our extension payments in your favor. The error was in the way we calculated revenue share with our developer partners, and did not give credit for the full amount of sales/renewals that were made from June 1, 2014 to April 30, 2017, when we discovered and fixed our calculations.
After discovering the error, we resolved the issue in the payout process and have conducted an audit to determine the amount that each of our developer partners was owed.
Attached is a letter with the amount we will pay you. To receive payment, please sign and return a copy of this letter (pdf/electronic signature is OK) to me by June 5, 2017.
I spoke to several WooCommerce extension developers, and it seems everybody pretty much got the same thing. Unlike in Office Space, this truly was a relatively minor amount, but it still was a decent amount of money, even for relatively low volume sellers. At least one higher tier seller equated it to several days worth of revenue.
Like I said, this isn’t a particularly important news item, but for some people it was a surprise influx of cash. I did confirm with Automattic that the issue is only related to the way they calculated payments for extension developers with custom scripts. It has nothing to do with the way any WooCommerce extensions operate, so if you run a vendor-style website with WooCommerce, your payouts should be accurate.