Here's why we started
The mysterious text
I was in a meeting when I got the text. It was from an unknown number. It read “I am in trouble and i really need your help, please can i call you now”. I was still working in an IT company at that time. Office hours were 10 to 5 but the work rarely finished at 5. “Okay, i will call you in 20 minutes” i texted back.
The catchup meeting was over soon. I closed my laptop and went for a walk. The sun had set hours ago and it was dark out. I am from the north eastern part of Bengal. The northern winds get brisk and chilly in the winter evening. I read the mysterious message again, and dialed the number. “Hello, who is this?” I asked. I am Bittu, I saw your advertisement and I love the way you are selling your Christmas graphics online.I would like to sell it too. He then went on to describe how he liked me addressing both positive and negative customer feedback. The way my ads and landing pages were set up and how it made it extremely convenient to place the order.
I was flattered.
I have always loved advertising and marketing, even though I was an AI engineer by profession. This covid had given me enough free time to explore it as a hobby. I had set up a website, created a product that I know adds a tremendous value to my prospect, and finally created an AD copy to go with it.
He kept talking about the various gurus he had followed and the courses he had taken. All short of what he had witnessed with my methods.
I cut him off as the conversation was leading nowhere.
“What do you want?” I asked.
“I want to sell your product,” he responded.
I was a bit annoyed. I had worked really hard developing this product. And there is this stranger asking; no, demanding that I share the rights to my property. But I decided to hear him out.
He went on to tell me that he was from Champaran, a village in the eastern part of bihar. He was the first to study engineering in his family, thus breaking the traditional farmer occupation. He was recently laid off due to covid. He was looking for a way to make money on the internet. He told me how depressed he was and how studying my methods gave him hope.
I felt bad for him. He sounded genuine and honest. I asked him about his budget. He didn’t have any. I asked him if had marketing experience. He had none.
But I was worried. You see, selling online is not easy. An effective sales funnel has a lot of delicate parts. Everything has to be just right for it to work. Let me explain.
Selling is like poaching an egg
First you need to make a product that is unique, and provides value to your prospect. You must have a digital store or a website that is easy to navigate and purchase from. The website should load within a few seconds and should work regardless of device and screen size. There should be an analytics tool in place. This measures how your visitors are engaging with your website, this data will be used to optimise the site further. Finally the Ad copy that is so interesting and so enticing that your prospect clicks on it. There is so much more, take my word for it.
The journey of a prospect glancing over your ad, to taking out his or her credit card and finally exchanging their hard earned money for your product or service, is far from easy.
I explained to him why it was a bad idea under his circumstances to sell online.
What did you do in your previous company?
“I developed countless WordPress websites” he answered proudly. Being in IT for 4 years, I had made several good connections and close allies. I offered to review his resume and refer him on Linked in for a job. He refused. “No sir, thank you but I am not looking to work for someone else” he responded with determination. I didn’t insist.
There was a small pause. And then finally it came to me.
“Why don’t you seek clients and develop websites for them? You already have the experience for that. But this time you will keep 100% of the profits.
The story of GPL
He listened to my case and finally responded. “But what about the themes and plugins”? My company had a subscription on Themeforest that allowed me to use the premium themes and plugins. Each theme is around $60, how can i afford that and still make a profit.
He was right. The themes were expensive and the Indian customers refused to pay above 10K for a professional website.
Why don’t you use GPL (General Public License) products, I suggested. “Never heard of them,” he blurted out.
I told him how WordPress was founded to be an open source platform. Which meant any code or product came under GNU GPL license, thus allowing legal copying and redistribution.Thats the reason you could buy the same plugin or theme for a fraction of the original price under GPL.
“Where can I download these?” I sensed the enthusiasm in his voice as if he had discovered a gold mine. There are many stores but you have to be careful. Most stores are inauthentic and sell products with malicious code within them.
Bittu texted me when he got his first client and today while i am writing it, he has a portfolio of over 20 clients.
Theme developers don’t consider the economic strength of the country while selling. Let me explain.
A freelancer or an agency in the USA can afford to buy a $100 plugin because he can easily get a $5000 client. Since the price of the plugin remains the same in India, we are crushed by the huge financial disadvantage. Since WordPress and all its components are licensed under GPL 2.0 it is a smart move to purchase them.
That conversation on the cold winter evening inspired me to create my own store of GPL products. Keeping the platform free and open source as was originally envisioned by Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress and a great American entrepreneur.
Cost of business
Between the server costs for the website, and the ad cost, I make a few hundred rupees a day if I am lucky. But that’s not the point. I earn more in blessings than in dollars. Let me show you.
It takes a i5 processor, 2GB ram and a 10 GB SSD computer server to host the website of 3000+ products. It costs 70-100 INR on an average to deliver the ad to the right person who clicks and reads this message. My pricing is the lowest in the market, in fact, if you find a single well reputed website that offers a theme for less than 175, I am going to give you 1 month free membership for absolutely nothing. That’s how confident I am on our pricing.
You may be wondering, what about support? What if I spend on a membership and something doesn’t work. Well, most likely you will fix it by following a series of amazing tutorials we have on installation. If something still doesn’t work, we will refund the complete amount, no matter at what stage you cancel your membership.
If you buy a yearly membership, you will get entry into one of the most helpful communities in the form of a VIP Facebook group. It’s a place where entrepreneurs and developers share ideas, ask questions and get those questions answered. If you believe my services to be an honest effort in making a change, subscribe to our membership and be a part of our community.
Bikki Kumar Sha
GPL Solution: The "Clean, Unlocked and Secured" Way
All WordPress items such as plugins and themes are licensed under the General Public Licence (GPL). We believe in the open source community and believe that WordPress should be available to all.