G'day Magento team
I have several issues with marketing review team responses to the extension I submitted:
1. They ask me to change the extension name from "Altima Lookbook Free" to "Altima Lookbook Standard". I don't really get why and from where that requirement comes?
The extension is free (we also have paid version called Altima Lookbook Pro), so the name reflects that. No any misleading.
It has been known with that name for circa 5 years. Plus it will require us to redo icons, documentations and probably extension description on our own website.
So it is a significant headache for us and confusions for merchants. Hence I don't really want to change the name.
The big question to Magento - why we have been asked to change the name?
2. Moderator asking me to
"Add more detail to the opening paragraph in the long description (before the list of features) that describes the extension. Make it clear what the extension can do for the customer, how the extension works, and give detailed features for the extension. You may want to give examples of cases when the extension might be used. Leave the merchant with a solid understanding of how their site will appear and function if they purchase your extension"
But I already have that opening paragraph. It seems to be canned response sent.
3. One requirements that I have complied but not happy of that is "No cross promotion". We have free extension, but it has a reference to paid version of this extension in description. Paid extension has extended functionality. Moderators asked me to remove that reference, which I did, however having such requirement is very disappointing.
We have free extension that can be used, but we make money on paid extension, that is how we can stay alive and support that free extension.
What is wrong with cross-promotion?
And more general question: is there any way to talk to your moderators? Right now, only options I have is to re-submit the extension, which is not a good communication tool. I can't ask moderator about what does she/he mean, why, etc. So have to post that questions to this forum, which is not always the right media.
The Marketplace support team will be responding, but I also wanted to provide the feedback on the forum as well. Thanks again for your post.
1. Our policy with extension titles is that we do not allow pricing information, including the word “free” in the extension title. Please remove “free” from the extension title. Please also remove “Free” from the extension icon.
2. We are requesting that the description of the extension begin with a more detailed opening paragraph. This is intended to help market the extension better. A more thorough description leads to better install numbers/sales. Please elaborate on the cool features of the extension. For instance, It looks (from the screenshots) like the merchant can click on different parts of the look book to get more detailed information. Talk about this cool feature as it would make people want to install the extension more! This section is your chance to tell the merchants how great the extension is.
3. You also stated: “One requirements that I have complied but not happy of that is "No cross promotion". “ We think there may have been some confusion. We were not asking you not to promote the paid version. The note stated that the link can’t lead to your store. You can definitely have a link that leads to the Pro version on Marketplace.
4. You also stated: “And more general question: is there any way to talk to your moderators? Right now, only options I have is to re-submit the extension, which is not a good communication tool. I can't ask moderator about what does she/he mean, why, etc. So have to post that questions to this forum, which is not always the right media.”. Please always contact email@example.com with any questions or concerns. We are happy to assist.
Thanks so much,
Thanks for your reply @ltraub
May I ask you why do you have that policy about pricing information in the title? I think that policy should be changed. It is very common for freemium products have a version called "Free", hence that policy makes live of developers harder without obvious benefits for other sides of the market.
Regarding opening paragraph and description, don't you think that it is a vendor's job to decide what is clear description and what is not? If it isn't misleading it should be good enough to go. You may advise on that and the advise is appreciated, but it shouldn't be a blocker.
Thanks for clarifications of cross-promotion, good that it is allowed within Marketplace.
May you elaborate on that, how it works in the opposite direction - referring to free version of the extension (outside the Marketplace) in paid product description?
The reason to ask is that with that additional hurdles to list free extension I may decide to not list it at all. In this case reference from free to paid version may let people who are not ready to buy the paid version find out about free one.
Please see feedback below on your questions.
Why do you have a policy about not including pricing information in the title?
The answer to many of your questions leads back to what we hear back from the community and our partners, either through personal emails, use of the forums, or at one of our conference such as Imagine. We welcome feedback from the community and take it very seriously. The goal is to provide the best overall experience for all parties. Some of these policies have been put in place after reviewing our refund request data. When many of our refund requests are due to merchant confusion, pricing confusion, or lack of information (merchants thinking the extension does something that it doesn’t), we update the policies.
If you review the search results page on Marketplace, the price is clearly listed below each extension title. For example, here is an example for the search results for ”FAQ”.https://marketplace.magento.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=faq. Merchants have the option of searching for either paid or free extension using the pricing filter. Because of these factors the use of “Free” is unnecessary in the title as it is redundant. To keep things uniform across Marketplace and to prevent confusion with merchants on pricing, we have chosen to only allow the use of “Free” in the title if it actually has to do with the function of the extension (ie. “Free Gift”, “Free Shipping”, etc.). in your case, when a merchant were to search for “Altima Lookbook”, they would see two M1 extensions with the price clearly listed under each. The merchant would see that the “Professional” version was paid, while the standard version was free.
Why don’t you think it’s the Vendor’s job to decide what is clear description and what is not
We monitor the descriptions for several reasons. For starters, when merchants purchase through Marketplace, the extensions are guaranteed. We handle all payment transactions on behalf of the developer and are the often the first point of contact from the customer support side. Our name is on the line, just as much as the developer’s. We have a dedicated team to test each and every extension and make sure that it works properly. Because we want merchants to have confidence when buying through Marketplace, we monitor the descriptions more closely. We only ask for alterations to the description when we feel the merchant will not have a clear understanding of what the extension does or when we feel the developer could help improve sales if they add just a bit more information. You may be surprised what types of descriptions are submitted. Often we receive submissions that are completely blank. Other times, the descriptions are in a foreign language or have multiple grammatical errors that make the description very difficult to understand. Instead of just providing a list of features, we require an opening paragraph so that the merchant fully understands the functionality. This provides trust with our visitors, brand awareness, better SEO, and in many cases, brings return customers to specific developers on Marketplace.
In your case, the first submission for the free version of your extension had no opening paragraph. It only had a list of features, however the list of features were not for the free version specifically. The features were for the paid version and did not make it clear what specifically the merchant would or would not be getting with the free version. Because the information was not related to the free version, we required that you update the description so that merchants would not upload the extension thinking they were getting something that they weren’t.
On your second submission, you removed the features for the paid version, however this left very little explanation of what they would actually be getting with the free version. This rejection was due to there not being enough information about the free version specifically, there not being a clear distinction between the paid version and the free version, and there only being 2 sentences in the opening paragraph. While we understand that the distinction may be clear to the developer, we need to make sure that this is also clear to our merchants. In this case it was not.
“May you elaborate on that, how it works in the opposite direction – referring to free version of the extension (outside of marketplace) in paid product description? …..In this case reference from free to paid version may let people who are not ready to buy the paid version find out about free one”
In regard to the cross promotion, I’m not completely sure what you mean. I’m afraid there may be some confusion. You are fully permitted to add links to the paid/free versions on Magento Marketplace within the descriptions. Your original submission, provided a link to the purchase page of the paid extension on your company website however. which is not allowed. This violates our promotions policy. While we welcome links to the paid version on Marketplace, we do not permit links that advertise for other stores, including the developers. This is the same policy for free extensions. This is a business decision and also ensures merchants that they will be provided with our 25 day money back guarantee for all extensions purchased through Marketplace. As you can imagine, we cannot have developers pointing to external sites because we cannot say with confidence that they will function correctly, since they have not been through our extensive testing and verification process. We can only stand behind Magento certified extensions if we are also responsible for processing refunds for such purchases.
Please feel free to explain in the long description of the paid version that you have a free version listed on Marketplace and provide the corresponding link!
I hope this has helped clear things up! We never mean to make the process feel like there are hurdles. We truly appreciate your feedback and feel free to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with further questions.
Lindsey + Marketplace team
I appreciate your detailed feedback. It is good that you listen to community and this post is aside of getting your answers in our particular case is created to share with Magento team my concerns as a developer.
I see some merits in your reasoning, but I can't totally agree with them.
In general they are making life of extension developers harder than necessary.
That is my opinion, which other extension developers may agree or not, but I see that too many developers voting by feet and decide not listing extensions, especially free at Marketplace at all. Meeting technical, and business requirements to be listed at Magento Marketplace is already hard. I accept the necessity of technical requirements, having low quality extension that crash the system is a disappointing for merchants. But keeping additional hurdles to get extensions listed just damage the ecosystem.
Our lookbook free extension with the description very close to what you consider confusing had been downloaded thousands time from Magento Connect only and had 5 stars rating.
I did a bit of analysis recently, you may find the number of the extensions listed on Magento Marketplace and vendor own websites below:
As you see, most developers in the sample (with only one exclusion) have significantly less extensions listed with the difference of 41% in average. And we are talking not about some obscure extensions that nobody uses. For example the extensions from Mirasvit and Fontis that are not listed are widely used.
So I suggest you to rethink your policies Lindsey, it is really sad to see Magento ecosystem decaying.