Is it possible to get rich by selling Kirby stuff?

I know people who get rich by selling CMS plugins and themes on Themeforest and Code canyon. The plugins and themes are often made for WordPress, Drupral or Joomla. The audience is very big because the popularity of these CMS:es.

What about Kirby? Is it possible to get rich (or get anything) by selling plugins and themes for it? I tag some people that I know sell stuff (might have missed a few):

@samnabi @Thiousi @distantnative @JimmyRittenborg @fabianmichael

  1. How much have you sold so far and how long did that take?
  2. If you don’t want to answer the first question, did you sell anything at all?

Hey Jens,

I just opened the virtual doors of my store this morning, So I am not rich yet :wink:

Also, I don’t expect to get rich by selling Kirby plugins, the market is just to small. If you develop something like Advanced Custom Fields or the Enfold theme for WordPress, that might work. Although, I don’t think that most of those authors speculated on making a lot of profit from selling there products.

For WordPress, there is a whole ecosystem, that only works on a large scale. Take WPML (bring multi-language websites to WordPress … yes, that’s not built into core) for example: They sell you a plugin suite and you have to pay an additional $ 50 every year to get updates. That might work pretty well, because the scope of stuff that their plugins can hande is very large and there is also a large target-group (basically everybody who whants to build a multi-language website with WordPress). Also, using WPML generates a “nice” lock-in effect. Once you use it, you have to keep on using it. Like Advanced Custom Fields Pro, WPML let’s you use a single license for every website, you’re running. Because there are probably hundreds of thousands of customers at least, this business model should work just fine for them (at least, their companies still exist …).

But with Kirby Plugins, this is a little different. We have a smaller target-group, made up mostly of web professionals, building products for themselves or clients. One advantage of this: I believe people are willing to pay for quality plugins/themes, as they also pay for Kirby, especially when working on a large-scale client website with a budget of thousands of euros.

As ImageKit is a very handy tool for my own and my client projects, I thought about sharing it with the world. I did not decide to charge money for ImageKit because I’m greedy, but to help me keeping up with the development and documentation. I know that a lot potential users are going to make a living by making websites, so why shouldn’t they support me if my plugin makes their lives easier? Implementing your own solution or at least writing a proper thumb component that talks to a cloud-based image-processing service is probably more costly, than spending $ 25 for a plugin.

But for now, it is too early to answer your question. I’m excited, how many people are going to use it. Let’s talk about that again in a few months. :wink:


I agree with Fabian. Creating plugins just to make money with them is probably not going to lead to good plugins. Most of the current Kirby plugins were created because the plugin author needed them for their own projects. And that’s awesome, because eating your own dog food in production is required to develop good and useful features.


Hi Jens,

A bit of history

I never meant to make money creating stuff for Kirby. I was at a point when I needed practice to improve my skills so I did a few things:

  1. I became super active on the forum, trying to solve other people’s problems to learn. This led me to dig into the source code of Kirby, dissect a lot of templates, and see a pattern of questions that came up regularly.
  2. At the same time, I started converting themes from HTML to Kirby. I’ve worked with HTML and CSS for 15 years and although I don’t consider myself to be good at it, I’ve got far less room for progress there than in PHP and Kirby. I thought converting themes would be great practice. When my first theme was finished, I was going to put it up on Github and distribute it for free. Instead, I decided to sell it, purely as an experiment. I was curious to see what the size of the market was. I then went on to build more themes and put them up for sale.

Does it work?

If your intention is to make a lot of money, I think I’d pass on the idea you’ll do so with themes or plugins. If you want to make a little extra cash on the side to help you spend more time on Kirby, I’m sure you could manage it, but it’s a small market, so don’t expect wonders.

The numbers

I’ve never been shy about the numbers. I don’t think of making themes as a business.
I’ve made give or take $500 dollars since putting my first theme for sale on June 9th. There have been ups and downs and I’ve experimented a lot with pricing. I’ve last week lowered the price of all my themes to a flat $10 which seems to be helping sales… time will tell


I’ve had lengthy and fantastic discussions with other Theme developers as well as with people that purchased the themes and with @jonabaptistella and it’s hard to get a good feeling of the market. Here’s my understanding:

  1. There are very few people who purchase themes. I believe this is mostly because Kirby users are generally qualified enough to build their websites from scratch just the way they want it.
  2. Themes are mostly bought for features, not for looks. I got this from chatting with customers that don’t even use the themes but wanted to take a look at how this and this was built in the theme. I also see that my most sold theme is not the prettiest or more advanced (in my opinion) but the most feature packed (blog with categories and tags, filters, portfolio, etc…)
  3. Some developers that are fantastic designers and can code a Kirby site with their eyes closed still purchase the occasional theme to help a friend or save time on a small budget project. @iancox if you want to share your point of view :wink:

If I were you

You are by far one of the most active plugin developers, and some of your plugins add incredible value. I think you could, for instance, monetize the revisions plugin. I’d pay for it. My advice is to just try it. That’s the best way to start.


Great information so far! :smiley:

I just want to clarify that I don’t intend to be rich by selling Kirby stuff. I just felt for a spicy title. :slight_smile:


@Thiousi Great to see some numbers. :slight_smile: That’s more than I expected. My guess would have been around $50. Not that you are a bad developer or so, just that I underestimated the market.

What I don’t like about selling stuff with the services online is that they are often closed before you buy. For me personally when I buy digital stuff I would like to test it well before I buy (if possible). Therefor I like the Kirby license. The downside is that it would probably not generate as much sales because people can use it for free and get away with it easy.

I hope I get even some more input from more people, epecially:

@samnabi @distantnative @JimmyRittenborg

I’m adding some community members here that I know sell plugins or themes:
@Constantin, @DieserJonas, @iancox, @groenewege, @aristotheme, @shaund0na, @victorberland

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Maybe you won’t get rich by selling themes or plugins…but maybe because you can develop your awesome business idea with a kirby-powered website? :wink:

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Very good topic :wink:

Rich or not rich?
If I would win 200€ or 300€ / months selling some kirby themes, I would feel specially happy, proud and more “Rich” but this is a very personnal point of view…

I love web design, I’m not a developper, and Kirby Forum & Doc gave me the possibility to create Themes that everybody can buy via Getkirby themes website. I wanted to make my own experience with that, and having an answer to the question:

Is it possible to win some money creating Kirby themes and how much, is it possible to create a regular extra-activity a part of creating websites for clients etc…?

Themes are for sell since a few months now, so I can share some results. I tried some differents prices, I also tried to give the same price to all themes for a few weeks. The price was about 5$. Number of sells was NOT better when themes were at 5$.

Please note that Siimple theme, (again a big thanks to @texnixe and @lukasbestle) was mentionned in the Kosmos 2.

I think that (for the moment…) majority of people who are interested in buying some Kirby Stuff are people who want to learn how to use Kirby with some concret exemples.


I started development on Shopkit in May 2015. I would estimate I’ve spent between 500-1000 hours working on it.

During the early part of that development (~50 hours), I was paid for my time by a client. I originally created Shopkit as a custom e-commerce solution for them, then reworked it for a more general audience.

I’ve sold 21 Shopkit licenses since launching over a year ago. After PayPal fees, that leaves me with $374.01 USD.

Making money from licenses is one half of my two-part business plan. I am also developing a subscription model on top of Shopkit, called Shopzest, which I am pilot-testing with a couple local businesses in my town. It has some little features that will not be in Shopkit, such as an events calendar and a blog.

This is not revolutionary. I will not disrupt the e-commerce industry with Shopkit and Shopzest. But if I am able to find 30-50 Shopzest subscribers, I can make a good living.

Now, I happen to live in a town where Square has their Canadian headquarters and Shopify employs 300 people. So why don’t I just go work for them?

Well, in 5 years Shopify may be gone. Who knows what the stock market will do to them, or if they get bought by Amazon and shut down? I have more faith that my local book shops and art galleries will still be around. I have more faith that the Kirby community will still be around. So I want to invest my time and effort into something that will last.


Shopzest is a fantastic initiative. I hope that works out well for you!

I personally don’t think it’s possible to become “rich” from selling Kirby products but then again I don’t think people should be aiming for that. Kirby for me, is more about the end product of what I’m creating rather than creating themes and trying to earn a living that way. If that is what you want to do then there is always Wordpress which has a much much larger following and therefore more potential customers.

Saying that, I’ve had a Creative Market account for a little while and have sold a couple of themes - I believe it was two themes for Kirby V1 and for V2 - MNMLST Theme and Kirby Comments.

Below is a screenshot of my Creative Market account to give you an idea, this is without any promotion bar the occasional post on this very forum.

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I’m working for a web agency and I don’t need to sell my Kirby stuff or anything else to make a living. So my position may be a bit different.

I’m working on Kirby plugins in my spare time for two main reasons: learning and having fun. In the last time I learned a lot and I had much fun … a different kind of getting rich :smile:

I’m sure the more plugins are available for free, the more people are willing to give their stuff away for free.

In general I like the idea of a free or cheap license for personal use and a more expensive one for commercial use.


Thanks for all meaty replys. It’s a great insight to how much people earn and why they do it.

To summarize:

  • The goal should not be to make money.
  • Money can be good to have to keep themes/plugins up to date.
  • It’s possible to get some money out of a Kirby theme/plugin.
  • Rich does not need to have anything to do with money. :wink:

after finding this thread and since I recently started selling plugins a few months ago i feel obliged to revive this dusted fellow.

based on my usual fee/hour and the time i spend creating them my plugins currently have a 2% income rate. which is not what i had expected to be honest. but like @jenstornell i did not create them to get rich to begin with. i my case i wanted to improve the quality of my code.

as a comparison: my paid projects have about 50 times more money spent for kirby plugin licenses or donations (not including kirby licenses) than my own plugin income. so at least someone else must me getting rich. :stuck_out_tongue:

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It’s not easy to sell plugins, that’s for sure. I think it’s because many of the commercial plugins have an open code, unlimited full version trial. I guess many people see no reason to pay as they can use it anyway. Kirby itself probably has that same problem, people who use but don’t pay.

I recently started with commercial plugins and donations on a small scale. I got 2 donations so far and those have been very important to me, because they prove that it works both techincally and from a user perspective. :heart:

To be honest I’ve only made 1 donation to a plugin and that is to @distantnative for panelBar which we kind of developed together a period of time. I gave ideas and issues and he fixed them, kind of like that.

I will probably try Kirby comments by @florianpircher. If it’s awesome I plan to give a donation on that project because it can be a big thing in one of my sites. I will also think about buying a beer to @thguenther for working out all my Engineer issues on Kirby Images which is an amazing plugin as well. But there are so many plugins out there that probably deserves both donations and purchases, like yours. :slight_smile:

I plan to add a donation link to all my plugins that are free (MIT). Then there is always a choice to pay something for it even if it’s free. I think other plugin developers could gain from doing that, especially those with many plugins.

I’m thinking of having a crack at this myself. I have half a dozens themes waiting in the wings.

The problem with making money out of Kirby is that it’s a relatively new kid on the block. Whilst we all know Wordpress is terrible from a codebase point of view, it does remain popular so if your building themes thats the one to go for. Or build for high value platforms that have a much higher template cost like Magento or Koken.

Out of interest, is it possible to find out how many people are actually using Kirby? This isn’t the same as how many have downloaded it. Does anyone have any idea how many Kirby powered sites are out there? Thats the customer base for things like Themes and Plugins. If its a small number compared, to other systems, then the chances of getting rich are slim.

I’m sur that if Kirby or Getkirbythemes woud propose 800 themes for sell (and/or free) rather than 80, every people who work out of Kirby would have more work and certainly win more money (for themes AND plugins work). Let’s imagine Kirby and 8000 premium and free themes!

It would make Kirby more popular for end user, newbies who just want to have a personnal website etc… (the first wordpress target)

Kirby staff provides a fantastic and quality tool, I’m sur that in the futur, some big commercial agencies will evaluate all the potential of such a tool for their projects, just a question of time.

There is a question I would like to ask.
Why can’t we see a Themes link and a themes section in Kirby site ?

Under downloads there is a link to the themes repository or what do you mean with “Themes link”?

Yes I know there is a link in download section, but it is not super visible.
SOmething like this?

And maybe a section on Home page like the made with kirby and love

I imagine it can be difficult for some reasons to add such a link in Kirby, but in my opinion, it is a huge/inseparable element of Kirby evolution.

There is a Github Repo that attempts keep track of all the available themes in the wild