Okay Themes Field Notes


Allow Myself to Introduce…Myself

Hello, stranger! My name is Mike McAlister and this is my new adventure, Okay Themes.

For the past two years, I’ve kept busy developing WordPress themes full-time. Until now, my themes have been available exclusively at ThemeForest. Stumbling upon ThemeForest in early 2008 was one of the luckiest things to happen to me, as it opened up my eyes to passive income in the form of HTML templates and WordPress themes.

The History

Since submitting my first theme in May of 2009, I have been able to slowly transition away from client work, and focus full-time on developing WordPress themes for a mass audience. Now it’s my career, and I couldn’t be happier. I wake up every day, design and code whatever I want, converse, conspire, and share ideas with some of the greatest minds in the WordPress community, and I’m able to make a living doing it.

More importantly, it got me thinking about what I might be missing out on by selling themes in the constrains of a marketplace.

The Catalyst

Way back in May, I was involved in a small discussion on Twitter about the state of WordPress theme prices. It quickly snowballed into something much bigger. It wasn’t long before Ryan Imel, of WPCandy, convinced me to turn my frustrations into an editorial for his site. The post blew up, and proved to be one of the most commented editorials of the year. It was great to see that I wasn’t the only one who was frustrated with (75% of) $35 themes. More importantly, it got me thinking about what I might be missing out on by selling themes in the constrains of a marketplace.

The Execution

And so I started working on Okay Themes. From the very beginning, my plan was to just create something that I could manage as a side project while still releasing themes on ThemeForest. It worked out quite well, actually. Of course, I couldn’t release as many themes to ThemeForest as I would have liked, but in the process I was creating something much bigger.

Launch pricing will be $25 for a single theme, $50 for the stack of all four themes. Believe me, I get the irony of opening shop with sub-$35 theme prices. But the theme prices will go up after the launch promotion and I’ll be free to experiment with some more creative pricing structures.

The Future

The intention here is not to take over the theme marketplace, rather to create my own shop where I can experiment, collaborate, educate and offer creative products for you fine people. And I’m going to have a shit load of fun while doing it. My personality is built into the core of Okay Themes, and that could make or break it. Regardless, there will be all kinds of easter eggs (hint, hint) and other fun ways to grab free themes from Okay.

So with that, I introduce to you the four flagship themes of Okay Themes: Structure, Element, Mission Control and Scribe. You can grab them all as a stack, too! I think they’re all pretty sweet, but I’ll let the people decide. Be sure to check out the demos to see them all in action and don’t hesitate to holler at me with any questions. I’m on Twitter a lot these days.

Anyway, enough of all that. I hope you enjoy Okay Themes!

9 Responses to “Allow Myself to Introduce…Myself”

  1. Great work mike! loving this new site.
    I will buy the theme stack, always wanted to buy your themes for educational purposes, I can’t let this opportunity pass away =)

  2. Reply

    [...] out the story behind the opening of the shop and don’t forget purchase a theme at the promotional [...]

  3. Good luck Mike, wish you all the best with the new adventure! Love the easter egg, although I cheated, yet again.

  4. Always down for a game of Tetris :) I just love how subtle everything is. Your style is well.. your style rocks man!

  5. Rock on Mike! This is great.

  6. Looks great, dude. Best of luck.

  7. Love the site, and your themes look quite simply stunning clean and concise, a refreshing change in the WP landscape, aesthetic simplicity is key.

    All the best with your venture!

  8. Good luck Mike. I was planning with the same idea as well. I just might do the same sometime soon.

    Best of luck & sales :)

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