I missed this thread 10 days ago, but had some things to add. I read Mike’s post and I was also a bit surprised by the move. Like Nate said, thousands of customers would probably lead to a few bottles of champagne being opened in my house. At the same time, I admit I do not (yet) know the inner workings of running a theme shop, so I’m in no position to judge.
I’m about to set up my own site and put a lot more effort into creating WordPress themes. The fact that I keep hearing it takes lots of time for a theme to get approved on .org is making me doubt a little my initial plan. I removed some of my older themes from ThemeForest and was actually thinking of cutting the cord once I gain some traction elsewhere, but Mike’s move and some articles I read recently might make me update and polish my existing themes instead.
Building an audience is no easy task and even with a few thousand eyes on your products, those eyes can quickly turn to someone else’s product. ThemeForest is a flawed, yet valuable ecosystem for anyone in this business. As longs as you develop themes you’re proud of, that are built with both users and developers in mind, you should be ok. Right? Right? Well… that’s in an ideal world. In the real world, a lot of those themes barely generate a ripple in the ThemeForest pond, while themes with seminars built around them generate the big waves (sorry, I couldn’t help it). It’s a shame, but I haven’t lost all hope yet.
In the end, everyone’s business goals and even personal goals are different. For what we know, Mike might go all in on the whole craft beer thing. Or was it just Pippin who was into that?