Tom Willmot on the Challenges and Opportunities Facing Enterprise WordPress • Tom Lach on the costs of rapid growth — It’s not for everyone • The Future of GiveWP and the Block Editor • Evolving Edupack — and Sunsetting It • and more…
Back in 2019, my agency was a team of 10 people, and we were entering a space where we could easily start working with big enterprises. Our idea of the future was to scale up and grow. Of course it was.
Every University IT department dreams of a self-service system in which they do not have to deal with outside vendors.
I now believe that a one size fits all website publishing product is not possible. Each university has its own set of requirements. The requirements vary from the placement of buttons to the type of accessibility a university mandates. In the end, universities shouldn’t sacrifice individual requirements for ease of use.
This week was all about revisiting and continuing conversations that have special value and maybe for that reason tend to continue on with a life of their own. Tom Willmot dropped a fine Twitter thread about the challenge all enterprise WordPress agencies face. This came in response to Magne Ilsas‘ featured post here last week, The WordPress Enterprise Paradox. In a similar theme of industry peer cooperation, Eric Karkovack asks if WordPress product owners and developers can see a common interest in “voluntary standards.” Could this clean up the plugin market? James Farmer thinks the WordPress business community can do more for itself too — by sharing data. In Post Status Slack we’re learning the tricks and trials of ranking in the WordPress.org plugin repository. How about plugin telemetry? Learn from the voices of experience.
Magne Ilsaas wants WordPress to be more than the pragmatic choice for enterprise clients. He wants WordPress agencies to be known for a distinct WordPress culture and mindset. Alain Schlesser, Carole Olinger, Carl Alexander, and Zach Stepek have a frank talk with Bob Dunn about the costs of not supporting WordPress contributors. Post Status members including Dave Loodts, Marius Jensen, Jeremy Ward, and Chris Reynolds discuss the looming PHP 7.4 EOL. Plus Jb Audras‘ breakdown of contributions to the WordPress 6.1 release. For your weekend reading, some news and insights from business, workplace, webtech, and govtech writers beyond the WordPress bubble.
“WordPress as a platform is putting us on the enterprise path. But what got us here is what makes us irrelevant,” says Magne Ilsaas, CEO and Founding Partner of Dekode. Magne wants to start an overdue conversation about three big risks — and opportunities — for WordPress agencies: 1) A lack of spaces for professional conversations and knowledge-sharing, including professional events, meetups, and mastermind groups catering to enterprise WordPress. 2) Successful agencies that use WordPress extensively with little or no community involvement whose work would benefit from enterprise WordPress peer networks. 3) An over-emphasis in WordPress agencies on short-term engineering solutions to the exclusion of long-term business solutions. What’s often left out is design, user experience, and most of all the capacity to play a strategic advisory role in partnership with clients.
This week’s WordPress business highlights for Post Status: Lesley Sim is pivoting Newsletter Glue to an upmarket clientele. A discussion starter about WordPress UX. Do we need a curated plugin ecosystem, more open standards, and easy access to current expert consensus points in key knowledge areas? Time to bail out of Twitter? PayPal? Katie Keith tells her HeroPress story.
Building, Supporting, and Selling a Winning Product — With or Without WordPress.org • Are Active Install Counts Relevant to Your Business’s Success? (Even if they are accurate? And they haven’t been.) • Let’s Fix What’s Broken (The Plugin Repo) Not What Isn’t (The Freemium Model) • Follow Leaders, Adopt Standards • Tools and expertise from rtCamp • Some great and “doable” ideas for the future of plugin business metrics on the .org repo. Could some of them help put an end to intrusive and manipulative dark patterns in the WordPress Admin dashboard and notifications?
This week I sat down again with Eric Karkovack to talk about the WordPress stories and topics that are on the top of our minds. Independently, we made nearly the same selections. There’s a single throughline in this episode — what works, what doesn’t, and what will take WordPress businesses forward in the product, agency, and hosting spaces.
Justin Labadie’s wishlist for the WordPress.org plugin repo:
1) Ensure all search results are relevant.
2) Standardize a Premium product upsell interface.
3) Make it possible to show other products by the same author.
Good ideas for the future of data disclosed to plugin authors using the wordpress.org repository:
1) Identify surges of unhappy users reacting to a bad release — and the opposite, happier outcome.
2) Use pageview analytics to estimate total potential user interest and conversion rates.
3) Assess a plugin’s performance with the .org search algorithm, the quality of releases, and plugin incompatibility as well as PHP compatibility issues.
4) Collect significant user behavior data anonymously without phoning home.
5) Just reveal all the raw data with privacy options for individual authors — no interpretive analysis on wordpress.org.
BONUS: Let’s take this discussion somewhere else!
Read the FAQ. Fill out this form. Agree to the WordPress.com Marketplace Vendor Agreement. If needed, integrate with the WordPress.com Store Licensing API.
Today WP Watercooler sought Solutions to the Active Growth Problem. In a pointed but respectful conversation moderated but Sé Reed, the Watercooler crew got one new detail from Otto about the decision to remove the active install charts: it was made months ago. How should the data collected by WordPress.org be understood, as a basis…
This week Alex Denning (Ellipsis) draws on Iain Poulson‘s historical, high-level plugin data at WP Trends to offer some thoughtful, somewhat contrary, but practical and grounded perspectives on the value of Active Install Data. At the WP Watercooler and elsewhere, a realization seems to be setting in that the data is not open source and not the property of the WordPress community. Like last week’s episode of Post Status Draft with Katie Keith of Barn2 Plugins, Till Krüss (Object Cache Pro, Relay) offers a lot of lessons this week about less travelled paths to success in the plugin business even as a very small company or company of one. Performance, testing, and support are key, interrelated parts of Till’s success and probably the most important ones to borrow in your own life and work if they resonate.
In 2019-20, only four plugins entered the space and broke into the upper tiers. These were Site Kit for Google, Facebook for WooCommerce, Creative Mail for WordPress and WooCommerce, and Google Ads and Marketing by Kliken. Has the WordPress.org repository become a closed shop, a tapped-out ecosystem where the winners have taken all? Here are some suggestions about how to break in or changes that could be proposed to open and diversify the repository. Until that happens, do growth charts matter?
End of content
End of content