Garbage disposal, once a quarter

About two years ago I read the book “The Way to be a Successful Entrepreneur“. It’s a powerful book that I can recommend to anyone. Even if you don’t necessarily want to become an entrepreneur, you can learn a lot from it. Unfortunately it’s in German language only. Anyway, what I really liked was the idea of permanent “garbage disposal”. You can read in this blogpost what that means and how it relates to Envato and my SNIP plugin.

What does garbage disposal mean?

I use a todo app called “Tappsk” that reminds me every three months (i.e. once a quarter) to take a critical look at my projects. In doing so, I try to answer the question, what of it is still useful and what is not?

Basically, you can do this with everything in your life: What is important, what is not? What have I done in the past that doesn’t help me achieve my goals?

And the latter is the key point: It’s okay to say that you might be spending too much time on social media, but what if you need that for your business? Then it’s okay. So the whole thing is as individual as you are. You start to critically question what you do. It’s also important to ask yourself whether you want to continue doing certain things. It’s like a good New Year’ resolution that you make on January 1.

Of course, this also changes again and again. That’s why you should get rid of your garbage more often during the year. No one can foresee certain things (like Covid-19), so some products may suddenly no longer be demanded. Many people tend to leave everything online. I used to be like that. I probably had around 15 plugins online for sale. Some became obsolete because the service behind them was discontinued. My Google Drive CDN plugin for WordPress is a good example. Google stopped supporting the CDN functionality. As a result, there was no longer a need for the plugin.

Other plugins just didn’t sell well. They also generated two to three hundred dollars a month, but why keep them? If there is one critical support request a month, that’s enough. That’s money down the drain when you factor in your hourly rate. A plugin has to sell well, just like any other product. Otherwise the whole project makes no sense economically.

Make decisions!

There is more to garbage collection than just saying “I’m not doing this and that anymore”:

  • Do I personally want to continue the project/product at all?
  • Does it make economic sense to continue the project/product?
  • Will I reach my goal(s) with the project/product?
  • Will I reach my goals faster without the project/product?
  • And much more.

These are all very important questions. Otherwise, you work month after month and still feel like you’re treading water.

On the other hand, there is the relief that comes with deciding not to continue. I speak from experience, because it was the same with my plugins. It was really difficult to bury them. It was difficult to give up the extra income. Especially if you are dependent on the money.

At that time, I firmly resolved to continue with SNIP more intensively. After the 80/20 rule, it was my drawing card. I then slowly discontinued all other plugins and then deleted them from CodeCanyon. That was difficult and some customers were not happy because of that. But that’s the way it is in corporate life: You can never please everyone.

The syndrome without a name

Garbage disposal is difficult. No question whatsoever. As described above, it doesn’t just have financial implications. After all, you also have to admit to yourself that you have burned time (which in my case, for example, went into development). Time that you can’t get back. Time that could be considered “lost”. I know that’s ultimately not true (because, after all, you get better and better with every line of code). But those are the negative thoughts you have to deal with as well.

In my case, this is aggravated by the fact that I suffer from a syndrome for which I haven’t found a name yet. I have an urge to permanently do something new! I suddenly get bored with projects. Therefore it’s interesting that I was successful with SNIP for such a long time. At the time of this article, the plugin had already been on the market for 9 years. An incredibly long time. Give it up? Phew… surely everyone can imagine that would be an incredibly difficult decision even for me.

Connection to Envato

As I mentioned in one of my last articles in the category “Plugin Journey” (which I’m writing because I read the book Traffic Secrets by Russell Brunson), I wanted to follow up with Envato. After all, I had done a very good agency sale and sold 200 licenses in one fell swoop. However, that went badly wrong. You can read the whole story in this article: How I almost lost several thousand dollars.

I don’t want to go too deep into the topic yet, because the discussion with the Envato author support is still going on. Just this: it seems like CodeCanyon and ThemeForest in general are on a downward trend. I was told that the lifespan of such platforms is around ten years. Envato has been holding on a bit longer now, but that statement alone suggests that they are slowly coming to the end here. The question is: why is that? But I don’t really want to answer this question for myself, because ultimately that’s not my concern either. Nevertheless, it is of course bad news, which then also immediately raises the question: Will my Structured Data Plugin for WordPress also eventually no longer in demand?

But I don’t want to answer this question either, at least not yet. But that will definitely have to follow. After all, as an entrepreneur, you have to think about the future. SNIP is one of my main sources of income. I have to be prepared if something changes there.

What’s next?

I will definitely keep in touch with Envato and see what else I can learn, how I can help them and of course try to discover how they can help me. I will also contact my mastermind group again for this. A very exciting topic overall.

In addition, my ACF integration is now mostly complete. It was important to me to still integrate the repeater function of ACF into SNIP. Everything else is not so important for now, which is why I will then focus on the next todos again.

Very exciting, isn’t it? Stay tuned… it will go on! The only question is how! 😆