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Beta Certified Marketplace Open!

    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 14, 2017 1:10 PM EDT

    It's here!!! We've opened our Beta Certified Marketplace and it has our Atlas theme along with a few certified products. More details found in our blog post.

    It is a live marketplace. Any purchases made are real purchases so please only buy what you want. You'll need to set your purchase, even free ones, to your licensed domain before you can install it. Just click "Configure" and then add your domain to it.

    For Experts, please log in and then go to the Marketplace. Click the "Expert Guidelines" link for full details on how to submit products.

     

    Everyone should read the Terms and Conditions as they are updated.

    We hope you enjoy the updates to the Marketplace!

  • gs
    • 857 posts
    September 14, 2017 2:12 PM EDT

    ==> "Clients will also have peace of mind knowing that SocialEngine has tested the product."

    Q#01 Tested what & how?  What does this actually mean (other than it installs on a fresh copy of SE)?

     

    ==>"...we’ve included these listings in the clients’ admin panel."

    Q#02 Where in ADMINcp?  Version 4.09.04+ only?

     

    ==>"You'll need to set your purchase, even free ones, to your licensed domain before you can install it"

    Q#03 Re: Before you can install it: Is the .tar file downloadable or does this attempt to immediately install?

     

    ==>"Thanks for making this purchase. Your order has been placed successfully."

    Q#04 I thought I'd try to answer Q#03 myself so I initiated the buying process for a free Plugin (don't recall which, I just selected the first one in order to test) and I wasn't prompted for anything - the above message appeared immediately after selecting the 'Get Now' CTA.  Shouldn't I have been prompted for something?

     

    Q#05  Although the initial SE page always loads slowly (6+Mb to download last time I checked) some of the Marketplace pages are taking close to a minute to open/load.  Will this be resolved?

     

    Q#06 If an ADMIN has multiple licenses for SE, am I correct in stating they must be logged into the desired account prior to making a purchase?

     

    I realize there are 6 questions in one post, so if you prefer I can create 6 different posts.  But since I've labeled all questions by number they may also be referenced accordingly instead of quoting the entire post.

    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 14, 2017 2:26 PM EDT
    gs said:

    ==> "Clients will also have peace of mind knowing that SocialEngine has tested the product."

    Q#01 Tested what & how?  What does this actually mean (other than it installs on a fresh copy of SE)?

     Tested it on a fresh install to install without errors. We install and check front end. Please do view our documents as many of your questions are answered in our new marketplace terms.

     

    ==>"...we’ve included these listings in the clients’ admin panel."

    Q#02 Where in ADMINcp?  Version 4.09.04+ only?

    Yes 4.9.4 and up.

    ==>"You'll need to set your purchase, even free ones, to your licensed domain before you can install it"

    Q#03 Re: Before you can install it: Is the .tar file downloadable or does this attempt to immediately install?

    Please do see our FAQ as we updated it and your questions are already answered there. Yes you download it and install it the normal way.

    ==>"Thanks for making this purchase. Your order has been placed successfully."

    Q#04 I thought I'd try to answer Q#03 myself so I initiated the buying process for a free Plugin (don't recall which, I just selected the first one in order to test) and I wasn't prompted for anything - the above message appeared immediately after selecting the 'Get Now' CTA.  Shouldn't I have been prompted for something?

    No. It's free. There is nothing to prompt you for. That was one of mine as ScriptTechs. :)

    Q#05  Although the initial SE page always loads slowly (6+Mb to download last time I checked) some of the Marketplace pages are taking close to a minute to open/load.  Will this be resolved?

    Yes

    Q#06 If an ADMIN has multiple licenses for SE, am I correct in stating they must be logged into the desired account prior to making a purchase?

    If the licenses are all on that account then no. If they are on separate accounts then yes as it assigns to your user account. It is a one domain install for the products so you would buy the product for each domain you want it on and set it in the configure screen.

    I realize there are 6 questions in one post, so if you prefer I can create 6 different posts.  But since I've labeled all questions by number they may also be referenced accordingly instead of quoting the entire post.

     

    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 14, 2017 2:28 PM EDT

    I think I answered all of them but please feel free to ask more after viewing our documents when logged in to the marketplace. Thank you!

  • gs
    • 857 posts
    September 14, 2017 3:14 PM EDT

    ==>"... many of your questions are answered in our new marketplace terms."

    My apologies - I was receiving a 504 Gateway Time-out error so I was unable to access the MarketPlace Terms.  I am now able to.  As far as the FAQs, I didn't know to check that as I don't see it mentioned in the blog post.  I would kindly suggest links to the MarketPlace Terms and the updated FAQs page be included in the new Blog Post since this would have prevented me wasting your time on 2 of the above questions :)

     

    ==> "Reviews of Certified Products: Only clients that have purchased a certified product from our marketplace will be able to write reviews for those products."

    Q#07 (new) Does this mean that if I purchased a Plugin prior to being certified I can or can't post a review?  I ask because a Plugin may obviously have existed prior to the Certified MarketPlace and may then be Certified - so it's the same product, but exist(ed) in 2 different states.  So I'm asking for clarification. 

     

    Q#08 From what I can see, the Certified process is optional for 3PDs, so they may continue to sell their Plugins directly (or Certify some and not others), correct?  If yes, does SE have any plans to prevent non-Certified Plugins from installing or will this continue to be optional to the 3PDs?  I ask since (my guess is) some Devs may choose to forego the Certified MarketPlace due to the 30% commission (or charge more for the Plugin in the Certified MarketPlace vs. direct sales).

     

    Q#09 If a Plugin was purchase prior to this Certified Program and is now Certified, do the Certified Terms apply to the previously purchased Plugins?  For example, may the 3PD state that since the Plugin was purchased prior to being Certified, they don't have to resolve support within 5 days.

     

    Just a comment: ==>"Expert will need to ensure that they provide a resolution for any support issue or problem as soon as it is commercially reasonable, but no later than five (5) business days from client contact."  YAY!!!  Thank you.  I'm glad you included the term 'resolution' not just reply because I have one 3PD that seldom takes longer than 1 day to reply, but often many months to resolve.  Hopefully they'll get their Plugins Certified. 

    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 15, 2017 5:00 AM EDT
    gs said:

    ==>"... many of your questions are answered in our new marketplace terms."

    My apologies - I was receiving a 504 Gateway Time-out error so I was unable to access the MarketPlace Terms.  I am now able to.  As far as the FAQs, I didn't know to check that as I don't see it mentioned in the blog post.  I would kindly suggest links to the MarketPlace Terms and the updated FAQs page be included in the new Blog Post since this would have prevented me wasting your time on 2 of the above questions :)

    No problem. :) I'll look at linking them in the blog today if it's not too crazy a day.  

    ==> "Reviews of Certified Products: Only clients that have purchased a certified product from our marketplace will be able to write reviews for those products."

    Q#07 (new) Does this mean that if I purchased a Plugin prior to being certified I can or can't post a review?  I ask because a Plugin may obviously have existed prior to the Certified MarketPlace and may then be Certified - so it's the same product, but exist(ed) in 2 different states.  So I'm asking for clarification. 

    In order for reviews to be more fair to all, certified products put the old reviews in an Archived tab. Only those that purchase in the marketplace now will be able to review those products. It is to keep a level playing field as experts are paying for the testing and a commission for the listing. This way, not only a few expert's stuff is seen as popular as before. This way, any expert with certified has a shot at their stuff being seen as popular if they get great reviews. :)

    Q#08 From what I can see, the Certified process is optional for 3PDs, so they may continue to sell their Plugins directly (or Certify some and not others), correct?  If yes, does SE have any plans to prevent non-Certified Plugins from installing or will this continue to be optional to the 3PDs?  I ask since (my guess is) some Devs may choose to forego the Certified MarketPlace due to the 30% commission (or charge more for the Plugin in the Certified MarketPlace vs. direct sales).

    It is optional but only certified plugins will be tested and get a tested banner which many clients wanted. Only certified plugins will show in admin to purchase. Only certified will be promoted in any way. Also, in the future, only certified will have a one click install/purchase in admin. So it is beneficial to certify but if an expert doesn't want all that great free promotion and also that tested banner which does carry some prestige with it, they don't have to do it.

    But, as a client, wouldn't you choose a tested product over an untested one? Just wondering. For me, I would as the certified won't have the callbacks too and if this one plugin I've been wanting is certified I will definitely buy it mainly due to that reason. 

    Q#09 If a Plugin was purchase prior to this Certified Program and is now Certified, do the Certified Terms apply to the previously purchased Plugins?  For example, may the 3PD state that since the Plugin was purchased prior to being Certified, they don't have to resolve support within 5 days.

    That would be up to the expert as far as what they want to do for prior purchases. We only have a say in things purchased from the marketplace.

    Just a comment: ==>"Expert will need to ensure that they provide a resolution for any support issue or problem as soon as it is commercially reasonable, but no later than five (5) business days from client contact."  YAY!!!  Thank you.  I'm glad you included the term 'resolution' not just reply because I have one 3PD that seldom takes longer than 1 day to reply, but often many months to resolve.  Hopefully they'll get their Plugins Certified. 

    :) This was an important thing. Yes, we watch the client responses and frustrations and we did add things in our terms regarding these concerns. Much of our terms is based on what I've seen and heard from all of you; what our staff has seen and heard in tickets; support issues from upgrades. This market is for Clients and Experts.  We expect it to be great for all. 

  • gs
    • 857 posts
    September 15, 2017 11:55 AM EDT

    ==>"Only certified plugins will show in admin to purchase."

    Personal opinion of course, but I don't appreciate this.  There shouldn't be any advertising in my paid-for ADMINcp.  Plus, I prefer not to have another 'thing' in ADMINcp that could potentially cause issues, and especially not something that doens't help me manage my site or perform my job better (there are plenty of FRs that would help me that haven't been addressed while this 'advertising' was implemented).  This is simply a piece of SE Core now that advertises products to us ADMINs. 

     

    ==>"... only certified will have a one click install/purchase in admin."

    Again, preference.  I will NEVER automatically install anything like this - I will always download the .zip file (so I have it in my 'possession'). Plus when there's an issue during installation, who do I contact - SE or the 3PD or both?  Who's responsible for fixing the issue(s)?

     

    ==>"... the certified won't have the callbacks too..."

    From what I read, nothing states this is tested or guaranteed - it is simply one of the Terms. 

     

    ==>"But, as a client, wouldn't you choose a tested product over an untested one? "

    ==>"Certified products are tested by our staff for installation, functionality and errors."

    ==>"Testing is done with the default theme and no other third party products installed on the testing site. Products with a “Certified” banner are tested to work on a standard installation. Webligo Developments certifies that these products work on such an environment. Webligo Developments does not give a guarantee that these products will work on your own installation."

     

    Yes, depending on what 'testing' was actually done and if there's a benefit.  What testing is performed on functionality?  And if issues are found, what is done about it - is the product still Certified (since afterall, it was already tested) or does it go back to the 3PD for resolution and later retested?  I'm not trying to be difficult here, but I'm not looking for marketing hype - I'm looking for 'meat' and what is actually performed.  This really won't affect me too much at this point as I've already spent the past 2+ years purchasing testing 150+ Plugins/Themes myself.  The point is, if SE was to perform 'deep' functionality and error testing, then this Certified 'testing' process could be very valuable to a Client as it could save them potentially thousands of hours (yes, thousands - I have more than 700 tickets with 3PDs, and many of those tickets have multiple issues that required days/weeks/months of retesting).  Also, based on the above no 3PD Theme could theoretically ever be Certified.  In fact, many Products can't since they piggyback onto/require other Plugins to function, so they can't be tested/Certified on their own.  Other products can't be tested/Certified because they replace SE products (which theoretically can't be tested).  Plus, this testing is done in such a 'clean' environment that doesn't mimic real life installations so how useful is it really?

     

    ==>"... free promotion..."

    This is more for 3PDs to address, but nothing is free - this is paid for with the 30% commission pool which ultimately comes out of the pockets of us ADMINs since we pay 3PDs who then pay you obviously.

     

    Q#10 Is there now a new support/customer-service/complaint channel for ADMINs to contact SE about issues for Certified Products only?  What is the process for addressing 3PD Products that are out of compliance with your Terms or have other issues? 

     

     

    Please accept my apologies if it seems like I'm being difficult - I'm sincerely not.  I'm simply trying to see the benefit(s) of this additional cost/hassle/etc to an ADMIN.  Plus, since it seems I'm the only one addressing any concerns in this Topic, you can probably just disregard this as I must be the odd person here.  If all of my purchased Products were Certified before I purchased them, this would be $1800-2200 in revenue for SE, so I'm trying to see how this would have benefited me by at least that much, and how much it benefits the 3PDs that I diligently support, and how much more $$ it would have potentially cost me (since I doubt the 3PDs can keep their existing price structure with losing so much $$ in commission, $1800-2200 just from my purchases alone).

     


    This post was edited by gs at September 15, 2017 12:05 PM EDT
    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 15, 2017 1:22 PM EDT
    gs said:

    ==>"Only certified plugins will show in admin to purchase."

    Personal opinion of course, but I don't appreciate this.  There shouldn't be any advertising in my paid-for ADMINcp.  Plus, I prefer not to have another 'thing' in ADMINcp that could potentially cause issues, and especially not something that doens't help me manage my site or perform my job better (there are plenty of FRs that would help me that haven't been addressed while this 'advertising' was implemented).  This is simply a piece of SE Core now that advertises products to us ADMINs. 

     Please feel free to put that in website feedback for an option to disable it but I can't guarantee that.

    ==>"... only certified will have a one click install/purchase in admin."

    Again, preference.  I will NEVER automatically install anything like this - I will always download the .zip file (so I have it in my 'possession'). Plus when there's an issue during installation, who do I contact - SE or the 3PD or both?  Who's responsible for fixing the issue(s)?

    The expert is responsible for their plugin as we mentioned in the marketplace faqs and terms of service.

    ==>"... the certified won't have the callbacks too..."

    From what I read, nothing states this is tested or guaranteed - it is simply one of the Terms. 

    It is stated in the expert terms that we do not allow callbacks or core modifications. So none of the products that are certified will allow callbacks or modifications. The only exception to callbacks is for api such as mobile app, twitter, facebook and that such thing.

    ==>"But, as a client, wouldn't you choose a tested product over an untested one? "

    ==>"Certified products are tested by our staff for installation, functionality and errors."

    ==>"Testing is done with the default theme and no other third party products installed on the testing site. Products with a “Certified” banner are tested to work on a standard installation. Webligo Developments certifies that these products work on such an environment. Webligo Developments does not give a guarantee that these products will work on your own installation."

    Yes, depending on what 'testing' was actually done and if there's a benefit.  What testing is performed on functionality?  And if issues are found, what is done about it - is the product still Certified (since afterall, it was already tested) or does it go back to the 3PD for resolution and later retested?  I'm not trying to be difficult here, but I'm not looking for marketing hype - I'm looking for 'meat' and what is actually performed.  This really won't affect me too much at this point as I've already spent the past 2+ years purchasing testing 150+ Plugins/Themes myself.  The point is, if SE was to perform 'deep' functionality and error testing, then this Certified 'testing' process could be very valuable to a Client as it could save them potentially thousands of hours (yes, thousands - I have more than 700 tickets with 3PDs, and many of those tickets have multiple issues that required days/weeks/months of retesting).  Also, based on the above no 3PD Theme could theoretically ever be Certified.  In fact, many Products can't since they piggyback onto/require other Plugins to function, so they can't be tested/Certified on their own.  Other products can't be tested/Certified because they replace SE products (which theoretically can't be tested).  Plus, this testing is done in such a 'clean' environment that doesn't mimic real life installations so how useful is it really?

     A clean environment gives a level playing field and lets us rule out conflicts with other products which is not what we are responsible for. The testing helps to know if a product installs and installs cleanly without breaking the site.

    ==>"... free promotion..."

    This is more for 3PDs to address, but nothing is free - this is paid for with the 30% commission pool which ultimately comes out of the pockets of us ADMINs since we pay 3PDs who then pay you obviously.

    Q#10 Is there now a new support/customer-service/complaint channel for ADMINs to contact SE about issues for Certified Products only?  What is the process for addressing 3PD Products that are out of compliance with your Terms or have other issues? 

    Support for each product is from its developer. If a certified product is not working on a fresh site without other products causing a conflict, you can always let us know. We will not address conflicts as that is up to each expert to address and/or fix. We are only addressing issues on fresh installs as mentioned above as it would be much more costly for us to check everything and install every plugin to make sure they don't have conflicts in this beta marketplace.  We did mention we would have more improvements later.

    Please accept my apologies if it seems like I'm being difficult - I'm sincerely not.  I'm simply trying to see the benefit(s) of this additional cost/hassle/etc to an ADMIN.  Plus, since it seems I'm the only one addressing any concerns in this Topic, you can probably just disregard this as I must be the odd person here.  If all of my purchased Products were Certified before I purchased them, this would be $1800-2200 in revenue for SE, so I'm trying to see how this would have benefited me by at least that much, and how much it benefits the 3PDs that I diligently support, and how much more $$ it would have potentially cost me (since I doubt the 3PDs can keep their existing price structure with losing so much $$ in commission, $1800-2200 just from my purchases alone).

    I understand your point. For years we had a market with no testing and had so many requests for testing and certified from both sides of the fence. For years things were listed and basically advertised for free with expenses on our end for costs associated with having a marketplace. 

    As we mentioned a few times now, we will roll things out in stages. This is stage 1 of the certified marketplace. This will benefit third parties by having more promotion to hopefully earn more. It will benefit clients so they know that a product works on a fresh install or a site without other plugins that may or may not conflict.


    This post was edited by Donna at September 21, 2017 1:58 PM EDT
    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 15, 2017 2:06 PM EDT

    For anyone with suggestions for improvements, it would be super cool if you would open a new thread for each improvement you want. This will make it much easier for us to keep up with each one and have feedback on each item for the certified marketplace. It is very hard to follow it via a threaded conversation when there are several issues posted in a comment and it tends to get very long in the thread with lots of issues to find again. :) We do want to improve it as we go. This is why we launched it a beta for everyone to use instead of just for some to see (private beta). 

    Feedback is welcome. Improvement suggestions are welcome. Thanks again!

    • 331 posts
    September 18, 2017 6:00 AM EDT
    Donna said:

    It's here!!! We've opened our Beta Certified Marketplace and it has our Atlas theme along with a few certified products. More details found in our blog post.

    It is a live marketplace. Any purchases made are real purchases so please only buy what you want. You'll need to set your purchase, even free ones, to your licensed domain before you can install it. Just click "Configure" and then add your domain to it.

    For Experts, please log in and then go to the Marketplace. Click the "Expert Guidelines" link for full details on how to submit products.

     

    Everyone should read the Terms and Conditions as they are updated.

    We hope you enjoy the updates to the Marketplace!

    Certified Marketplace is a step forward towards maintaining the genuineness of the 3rd party products. SocialEngine community users will be able to choose the products which abide by the SocialEngine standards and thus will have authentic plugins on their website.
    Looking forward to the upcoming improvements.

    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 18, 2017 6:02 AM EDT
    SocialEngineAddOns said:
    Donna said:

    It's here!!! We've opened our Beta Certified Marketplace and it has our Atlas theme along with a few certified products. More details found in our blog post.

    It is a live marketplace. Any purchases made are real purchases so please only buy what you want. You'll need to set your purchase, even free ones, to your licensed domain before you can install it. Just click "Configure" and then add your domain to it.

    For Experts, please log in and then go to the Marketplace. Click the "Expert Guidelines" link for full details on how to submit products.

     

    Everyone should read the Terms and Conditions as they are updated.

    We hope you enjoy the updates to the Marketplace!

    Certified Marketplace is a step forward towards maintaining the genuineness of the 3rd party products. SocialEngine community users will be able to choose the products which abide by the SocialEngine standards and thus will have authentic plugins on their website.
    Looking forward to the upcoming improvements.

    Thank you!

    • 71 posts
    September 21, 2017 7:31 AM EDT

    I have two negative points as to the certification process:

     

    1. Developers are required to use PayPal due to 30% fee. It is not available for all countries. So you are cutting some of the developers out of the certification process.

    2. I think for the fee there should be at least a minimal core review and load tests. The biggest issue I see when working on custom projects is bad coding. There is a rush for extra features at cost of everything else. Such plugins will look perfectly fine on a clean setup using a powerful server, but add 1000 entries to the database and run tests on a less powerful server and you will get a non-usable website. While front-end testing on a clean setup will resolve some issues it won't resolve a bigger one.

     

     

    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 21, 2017 8:22 AM EDT

    Hi Eugene,

    Please remember the expert area for discussing things like that. :) Found in this forum in the Expert category.


    This post was edited by Donna at September 21, 2017 8:23 AM EDT
    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 21, 2017 8:37 AM EDT

    Regarding point 2, we will have improvements as we mentioned in the past. This is phase 1. It is just this testing. Later on we will provide more testing criteria and methods. However, we cannot ever be responsible to ensure 100% of products work with 100% of other products. No one does that in any script I know of. Even with coding standards set, there can be conflicts from time to time. However, we can discuss this sort of thing in the expert area where we can get more feedback and input from experts regarding specifics. :) 

    Thanks for your feedback.

  • gs
    • 857 posts
    September 21, 2017 8:53 AM EDT
    I appreciate Eugene's post and am glad it wasn't posted where I couldn't see it. #1 is surprising but then not really as it's an example of how things are not fully thought through here. #2 is just 1 example of how useless the Cert process is. I don't need to pay 30% (most likely it will be passed on to us ADMINs) to find out if a plugin installs in a clean environment - I need to find out if it works (so I don't waste hundreds/thousands of hours creating 700+ tix to 2 3PDs to fix bugs). I need it load tested. I need to know how it functions (if it functions) with integrated Plugins by the same 3PD (which theoretically can't be tested as Cert is 1 Plugin in clean install). I would like to know how a theme works (but never will because it can't be tested - obviously can't run 2 themes concurrently). etc. As I mentioned earlier, in my case SE's commission on my purchases would be around $2000 - which to me is an expensive way to find out if plugins will install (when all of my plugins were installed by the 3PD themselves). And yes, no callbacks is very useful but that could have been a requirement in the past, which it is now. I guess I simply don't see a $2000 benefit to me or the excellent 3PDs I've been fortunate enough to work with. But I obviously see how that benefits SE.
    • 71 posts
    September 21, 2017 9:16 AM EDT

    > Please remember the expert area for discussing things like that. :) Found in this forum in the Expert category.

    Ok, I'll look for it. 

     

    > However, we cannot ever be responsible to ensure 100% of products work with 100% of other product

    I have not mentioned that kind of testing. 

  • gs
    • 857 posts
    September 21, 2017 9:19 AM EDT
    > However, we cannot ever be responsible to ensure 100% of products work with 100% of other product
    I have not mentioned that kind of testing. 

    Me either - I don't see how that's even possible on any platform or OS. But I do expect products provided by the same 3PD to function properly.
    • Moderator
    • 5871 posts
    September 21, 2017 1:57 PM EDT

    In regards to certified testing with all of the other plugins on a site. That isn't feasible. We would have to have a staging site with every plugin installed for each developer. Or, we would have to install every plugin in the marketplace every time we test a plugin. No one does that and there just isn't the manpower for something like that, not to mention the costs involved with having all of those staging sites and updating every plugin on them. 

    As an example, Apple charges a fee but also doesn't test that way, with other apps. We will have improvements later on to have coding standards and testing. Right now we can't do that in phase 1. We also need more documentation for experts. Those are also in the plans. 

    Fees generated will be used for more R&D to improve the marketplace and the SocialEngine Product line. 

    Benefits to experts for the fees is that they get their products tested and certified to work by the SocialEngine staff; more exposure via admin panel ads (which many scripts do) which lets all clients see their products; more exposure here; less costs in hosting their downloads, less hassle with security for downloads; other promotional mentions as we get those rolling in blogs or social media or both; and as the market improves they will see even more benefits.

    Clients will have peace of mind knowing products are tested and do install; on install, no errors are seen in a front end view; support for products will be received from the developer per our terms; upgrades to certified products have to be done in a timely manner per our terms; certified products have no callbacks other than mobile api or apis that need it; no source edits in certified products; in upcoming plans the certified products will be even better with coding standards; revenues go in to further development for SocialEngine which helps bring a better core product and marketplace.

    Honestly, there are a lot of benefits to this. As a client myself, I can't wait to see some of the products (hoping for an articles one) in the certified market as that's what I'll buy.