A new feature we’re unveiling at the Geek Guidebook is the ‘Best Of’ series. In it we will be showcasing some of the best people, companies, and ideas in the geek world. First on our list is something very dear to our hearts: WordPress. While WordPress itself is an ever-expanding system, the people taking full advantage of its power are really making quite a healthy name for themselves. So how does someone make money off an open source platform?
The Woo team has been pumping out WordPress (and Expression Engine & Tumblr now) themes with a relatively small number of people behind the wheel.
Adii, Magnus, and Mark have become WordPress Ninjas, Gurus, whatever you want to call them…and they’re pumping out some themes that are revolutionizing web design. While the jQuery sliders and WooCodex are not exactly game-changing, they’re important for a reason. WooThemes are bringing the kind of web design found only in big design firms to the masses. Geek Guidebook is a happy customer of Woo for just the past month and we plan on retaining our membership for a long time to come. As Woo continues to expand, so will Geek Guidebook and out network of Woo-based blogs.
This feature comes on the morning of WooThemes latest announcement: the Boast theme. We are playing around with the theme on the test server for Geek Guidebook and it appears that Boast may actually foot the bill for a side project we’ve been working on for a client. Once again, Woo to the rescue. (In case you didn’t know, Geek Guidebook is run off the Canvas theme by WooThemes using Magnus’ latest update to the magazine format).
Once an innovator, always an innovator.
WooThemes is always innovating, too. They didn’t just start WooThemes to sell some code to people. They’re building their brand using their own products. (A feature in Mashable surely hasn’t hurt either). WooThemes has built steady traffic to their website and that has translated to dollars in the door. For example, I joined WooThemes right after the Retreat theme came out because I thought was the theme I wanted to use. Turns out I found a Woo Theme I had never noticed (Canvas) and got to use it because I purchased a full membership. A big reason I plan on staying a member is also the continued work to make their themes easier to access and manage. Enter the iPhone app: Woo Express. The app is expected to be released pretty soon and will give users access to some of the amazing features of WooThemes.
The Woo team recently shot out a monthly (well, mostly monthly) e-mail to its users notifying them of some upcoming features, events, and products. Personally, we’d love to have a WooUp (WooThemes Meetup?!) in the Boston / Cambridge area. I’d be happy to get the ball rolling if people are interested. Anyway, here’s what is on deck for the Woo team in 2010 Q2:
After a bit of experimenting with theme niches of late , we’ll be focusing squarely on releasing some firm fan-favourites again (i.e. business, portfolio & magazine themes). In the next 6 / 7 weeks, you can expect these themes to be released (in no particular order):
- Boast , a brand-new business & portfolio theme with a shiny, Apple-like gloss designed by Liam McKay (teaser here);
- Diarise , a niche theme that will be perfect for organizing & managing events (teaser here);
- Apz, a design best suited for selling iPhone / iPad / mobile applications, but flexible enough to use as a generic business theme;
- Spectrum News, a magazine- / news-style theme that will reinvigorate our magazine themes collection; and
- Inspire, another business theme – in the Optimize-mould – that is sure to shoot to the top of our themes leaderboard very quickly.
In addition to these, we’ve also been working on a real estate theme, another handful of business & magazine themes, something special from Rogie King & we’re also hoping that we will soon be able to release another free theme to show our appreciation for all your support!
As has been the case recently, our focus isn’t solely on releasing new themes anymore and it is our hope that we can continue to add value in all areas that concerns WooThemes. With that being said, you can expect us to push some more WordPress boundaries by the upcoming release of an iPhone app for our microblogging themes and we’ve also been working on a new admin & user backend which will again shape the next chapter in our journey (as we did with the launch of WOO2 last year).
A Look Back
We thought you’d enjoy the WooThemes’ whimsical way of sharing their story about how the company got started. What better way to capture attention than colorful comics!