Envato Elements is a subscription service that provides unlimited graphics for $29 per month, or $228/year if you also want access to WordPres themes and plugins. In this post, we’ll look at whether subscribing to Envato Elements is a worthwhile investment for a WooCommerce store owner.
Elements has a selection of attractive WordPress themes available to customers with an annual subscription. At the time of writing, 91 WooCommerce-compatible themes are listed. The themes are all sourced from Envato’s ThemeForest website, which has a reputation for offering overly bloated themes that are prone to compatibility issues.
As the themes are offered by a variety of different developers, the quality can vary quite significantly between each theme. Furthermore, all of the themes offered on Elements are “as-is.” The developer is under no obligation to provide customer support or continue to update the theme to support newer version of WooCommerce. Having such limited access to support and updates makes the themes from Elements too risky for a WooCommerce store owner.
Much like the WordPress themes category, the plugins available on Envato Elements can vary in quality, fail to receive updates in a timely manner, and are offered without support from the developer. Having said that, there are quite a few excellent plugins available that allow WooCommerce to be adapted to numerous niche purposes.
Some of the WooCommerce plugins on offer have functionality comparable to plugins that cost hundreds of dollars per year. If you’re comfortable testing plugins and dealing with bugs without support from the developer, sourcing a handful of plugins from Envato Elements could save you hundreds of dollars.
Envato Elements has a moderate-sized selection of graphics and logos, all of which are of excellent quality. The main issue with using graphic assets from Envato Elements is that anybody can buy them, meaning your business won’t have truly unique branding. This isn’t very important if you’re a small brand, but if you’re fortunate enough to become a large company, having a logo and other distinctive brand assets that can’t be trademarked is a significant issue.
Having access to good quality backgrounds and fonts is important if your business is often producing promotional material.
This is where you’ll likely get the most value out of your Envato Elements account. A decent content marketing or social marketing strategy will demand access to a lot of royalty-free photos, and buying stock photography on a per-image basis can get really expensive.
Elements has a somewhat limited selection compared to the larger stock photo firms—iStockPhoto, Shutterstock, etc—but it also costs significantly less. iStockPhoto, for example, charge $199.00 a month for 750 photos, while Elements offers unlimited photos (plus graphics, themes, and plugins) for $29.00 a month.
Maintaining an active Elements account might be worthwhile just for access to the photo library, which can save you a substantial amount of money if your marketing efforts demand a steady supply of stock images.
I’ve had an Envato Elements account for a little over three months and have used about 50 items in blog posts, promotional graphics, and website designs. I’ve probably saved a few hundred dollars compared to buying the items individually from the Envato Market, although admittedly free resources would have been sufficient alternatives for a lot of items. Having (almost) everything available in one place is pretty convenient though.
The best way to determine whether Envato Elements would help your business is to look at how much money (or time) you’re spending acquiring design assets each month, and figure out if an Envato subscription would ultimately be cheaper.