Features Comparison

How Should You Sell Your

Plugins and Themes?

Welcome to our comparison page.

Let’s speed ahead and find the best option for your budget and needs.

Features Comparison

Freemius vs. WooCommerce vs. EDD vs. CodeCanyon/ThemeForest

 



Non-exclusive
Can you sell with other platforms, too?
EU Vat
Since Jan 1, 2015, if you want to sell plugins or themes to European customers, you are required to to collect VAT even if your business is not based in Europe. Besides the complexities of different VAT rate per EU country and exemptions for business customers, you are also obligated to open a legal entity in the EU and pay the extra charged EU VAT to the European countries. Freemius does all of that for you automatically and seamlessly.
Free$50 / year$50 / yearFree​
Exclusive for plugins and themes
Is the platform concentrated on plugins & themes?
Stripe gateway
Is the Stripe gateway included in the price?
FreeFree​$89–$209 / yearFree​
PayPal gateway
Is the PayPal gateway included in the price?
FreeFree​$89–$209 / yearFree​
Software licensing
Is Software Licensing an included basic feature?
Free$129–$299 / year$199–$419 / yearFree​
Recurring payments and subscriptionsFree$199–$399 / year$199–$419 / year
Automatic updates
Do your customers automatically get software updates?
Free trials
Can you offer Free Trials without a payment method?
Paid trials
Can you offer Trials with a payment method?
Free$199–$399 / year Subscriptions extension$199-$419 / year Recurring revenues extension
PDF invoices$79–$199 / year$29–$89 / year
Coupons and discounts
Multi-currency
Can you sell your product in multiple currencies at the same time?
$99 / year
Checkout exit-intent discountThird-party pluginThird-party plugin
100% GPL
Does the platform fully support the GPL license?
Feedback form
Capture user feedback upon plugin/theme deactivation.
Multi-site licenses support
Time to set upHoursWeeksWeeksHours
Sell from any site
Can you embed the checkout on all kinds of web pages?
Sell from any WordPress site
Sell from WP Admin Dashboard
Can users purchase your Pro version right within the WordPress admin dashboard of their website?
Sell add-ons
Can you sell multiple extensions independently?
Sell bundles
Can you sell a combination of multiple plugins, add-ons, and themes as a discounted package under the same subscription or a lifetime purchase?
$49–$149 / year
Sell memberships
Can you sell access memberships to your shops' plugins, add-ons, and themes collection?
Free$149–$249 / year$199–$419 / year
Prorating
Are charge adjustments supported when upgrading and downgrading plans?
Partial refunds
Can you refund a partial amount of a charge?
One version management
Can you manage your entire code base on one repository, or are you required to separate Premium version from Free version?
Staged rollouts
Can you distribute your updates progressively to only a subset of your users?
Seamless upgrade process
Users account management
Impersonated customer login
Does the platform allow you logging into your customer's account management dashboard so you can easily debug issues and see exactly what your customer sees?
In-dashboard account management
Does the platform allow customers to manage their account directly from within their WP Admin dashboard?
Help Scout integration
Does the platform integrate with Help Scout via a dynamic app to pull user / customer information directly into your Help Scout’s sidebar?
$79 / year
Affiliate platform
Does the platform come with a robust affiliate solution to for on-boarding affiliate marketers to promote your product for a commission?
Free$99–$249 / year$99–$249 / year
MailChimp integration
Does the platform integrate with MailChimp to push users and customers to your lists?
Free$49–$129 / year$49–$149 / year
Access to customer data
Access to free user data
Manage licenses expiration
Can you decide what happens when a license to your product expires? Do they lose access to updates/support?
Free$199 / year$147 / year
Contact channel
Can users issue support tickets from within your plugin/theme admin interface?
Dunning mechanism
Does the system automatically handle failed renewal payments?
Cart abandonment recovery
Unlock lost revenue by automatically tracking and emailing shoppers who start, but don’t finish your checkout process.
Free$99–$249 / year$49–$129 / year
Data export
Can you easily export all of your data, in case you decide to leave the service?
Payouts schedule
How often are your earnings transferred to you?
MonthlyImmediateImmediateMonthly
Zero maintenance
Solution typeSaaSSelf-hostedSelf-hostedMarketplace
Hosting and secure repositoryFree$600 / year$600 / yearFree
Composer repository
Can agencies and hosting companies install your plugin/theme as a Composer dependency?
Secure daily backupsOn youOn you
Marketing automation and emailFree$199+ / year
PCI complianceOn youOn you
GDPR compliance
General Data Protection Regulation
On youOn you
SCA compliance
Secure Customer Authentication using 3DS 2.0
SSL certificateFree$65 / year$65 / yearFree
Conversion optimization
Pricing & checkout auto-optimization using (inside) industry data
Free$999 / year
Analytics and usage tracking
Do you get data about your plugin/theme users?
Free$300 / month$300 / month
Segmentation
Are your users and their product feedback segmented to help you take action and improve your product?
Free$100 / month
(for 10,000 users)
Verified buyer reviews
Send a request for review after a successful purchase to collect testimonials.
Free$99–$249 / year$89–$209 / year
Price
How much is using the platform going to cost you?
7% (*)> $1,700 / year> $1,900 / year30% - 70%
Set up your own prices
Promotion and distributionOn you
(with option to ride on WP.org repo distribution)
On youOn youInside the marketplace
Percentage based on lifetime gross sales:

There’s more to selling products online than checkout forms and gateway fees

The day you turn to a product-based business strategy is the day you realize how many third-party products and services you need to serve your plugin/theme to the people who use and love it. The journey to success is complex and has many moving parts that need to work together to stimulate sales and growth. To simplify matters, we’ve broken this journey down into:

The 3-Step Process

Sowing Your Seed

Host Your Digital Product
You’re going to need to find a secure hosting service to serve your product from. There’s bad hosting, there’s good hosting, and there’s excellent hosting — it all depends on your budget and priorities.

Purchase an SSL Certificate

To ensure your data and transactions are secure, you’ll need to obtain an SSL certificate for your website through a reputable, trusted seller.

Gateway Fees

Online sellers have to pay a fee for the services that pass transactional data around the internet to authorize or deny deals. There are a bunch to choose from, so you’ll need to do research until you identify a service that suits your specific needs.

Software Licensing

To control the number of sites your product is valid for, as well as what happens after a purchased license expires, you’ll need to handle software licensing yourself. This capability usually comes with a price tag.

Nurturing and Caring

Support System Integration

Your customers are writing the checks (or making the $ transactions in your case), and one way they measure the quality of your product is the support you provide for it. You’ll require channels that facilitate excellent customer communication and help you manage these interactions in an efficient manner.

Enabling Growth

Customer Data and Insights

Out of all the products in the world, why have people chosen to use and purchase your product specifically? Who are they? Where are they from? If you don’t have access to these critical insights, how will you be able to get more of them onboard?

Segmentation of Users

Once you’ve collected user data, you’ll want to organize the information in a smart, usable manner instead of piles upon piles of raw data reports. Segmenting your users according to their profiles is vital if you want to make data-driven decisions.

Analytics and Usage Tracking

By this time, you should know your users and have their related data segmented elegantly. Now you need to find out how they’re using your plugin or theme, which is information that’s especially important for digital products. There are many tools that can help you gather this knowledge, so make a habit of consulting at least one of them  regularly.

Marketing and Email Automation

With your user-base data collated and segmented by profiles and actions, marketing is the next step to increase your sales. More specifically: automated marketing. Simply put, it’s marketing so smart that it does all the hard promotional work so that you don’t have to lift a finger. Now that’s scaling!

CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization)

With these processes in place, you’ll naturally want to carry out tests to optimize/improve performance and ensure that they’re working hard for your business and your product sales.

Your Time Is Valuable

Let’s not forget that time equals money. The hours you spend researching, choosing, and setting up all of the different services are both valuable and expensive. As a plugin/theme product maker, you need to be precious about where you devote your attention if you’re to see sales gains and business growth. The next section should help you decide where best to focus your time.

Make Your Decisions Easier

Let’s examine a hypothetical case of a WordPress product maker who has developed a plugin or theme and wants to start making revenue from it. For this scenario, let’s pretend this product maker is you, and below are some important facts to know about your product:

Freemium

Business Model

10,000

Active Users

2%

Conversion Rate

$100

Annual License

Your Annual Gross Sales

200

Sales / Year

$20k

Gross Revenue / Year

It’s important to note that these numbers are intended to be a baseline from which to draw comparisons in the next section. Even if these numbers do not accurately represent your current product’s situation — or are wildly different! — they will give you a good idea of what to expect when choosing the sales platform to sell your plugins or themes.

Comparing Two WordPress Product Sales Routes

For Your Plugin / Theme Business

The Scattered Route

$999 / yr

CRO

OR
$348 / yr

Hosting

$660 / yr

Gateway Fees

$3,600 / yr

Usage Tracking and Analytics

$200 / yr

Support Integration

$1,200 / yr

User Segmentation

$100 / yr

Website Maintenance

$600 / yr

Dunning Mechanism

$732 / yr

Event-Based Marketing Automation

$7,500+ / year

The total cost of going with the ‘scattered’ route and having each service handled by a different company is ± $7,548 / year. This leaves you with $12,452 in your pocket (which does not account for the time and resources spent on setting everything up).

The Freemius Route

A super-powered SaaS engine that handles all of the heavy lifting. Choosing the Freemius route means you get the mission-critical features of the ‘scattered’ route built into one customizable SDK that integrates directly with your product.
7%*
( Revenue share )
Plus gateway fees (30¢ + ~3% per successful charge)

$2,060 / year

The total cost of having the Freemius platform handle all of these tasks for you is $2,060 / year, which leaves you with $17,940 in your pocket. In the first year, the cost is $2,660 due to an extra $600 for the initial $5,000.

The Scattered Route

$3,600 / yr

Usage Tracking & Analytics

$1,200 / yr

User Segmentation

$999 / yr

CRO

$732 / yr

Event-based Marketing Automation

$660 / yr

Gateway Fees

$600 / yr

Dunning

$348 / yr

Hosting

$200 / yr

Support Integration

$100 / yr

Website Maintenance

$7,500+ / year

The total cost of going with the “scattered” way and having each service handled by a different company is – $ 7,548 + / year, which leaves you with $ 12,452 in your pocket (and that does not include the price of all the hours you invest in setting it all up).

Freemius Route

The total cost of going with the “scattered” way and having each service handled by a different company is – $ 7,548 + / year, which leaves you with $ 12,452 in your pocket (and that does not include the price of all the hours you invest in setting it all up).
7%*
( Rev - share )
+ gateway fees (30¢ + ~3% per successful charge)

$2,060 / year

The total cost of having the Freemius platform handle all of these tasks for you is $2,060 / year, which leaves you with $17,940 in your pocket. In the first year the cost is $2,660 due to an extra $600 for the initial $5k.

Think About Now. Forecast for the Future. Choose the Platform That Makes Sense for Today and Tomorrow

Each of the compared options carries its own set of pros and cons that will impact not just the present, but your product’s future too. When you make a commitment to a sales platform, it’s critical to predict your future needs to gauge how each solution will cater to potential requirements down the line.

It bears repeating that ‘there’s more to selling products online than checkout forms and gateway fees’, which is why the solution you pick today is so critical for success tomorrow. But before you commit, it’s important to know what each platform offers in terms of migration should you ever need to transition to another service. If a platform ‘locks you in’ and does not provide comfortable data export, it’s a persuasive reason to think twice about selecting it.

We hope that the insights in this comparison will help you make a wiser decision about which service suits your needs and budget best. If you’re feeling up for another comparison deep-dive, check out this Envato / Freemius comparison.