Why and How I left Plimus for Esellerate

To sell my PC and Mac games, I used Plimus since 2005. I made the switch to eSellerate this week.

Why I left

At first, I was only selling games that were sold directly from my site. I developed PC and Mac games. However, the last few years, I also developped games on Xbox360 (Indie Games) and I am currently working on mobile games. All these platforms are tied with Microsoft, Apple or Google and I can’t use my own site to sell these games (that’s not totally true as I could sell Android games directly but I think you need to be on Android Market Google Play to get some visibility).

I therefore have very little direct sales these days and Plimus has a big drawback in this case: there is a dormant fee for accounts not selling for a few months. I find this really crazy, and thought about leaving when I first heard about that. They themselves suggest making a “self purchase” to avoid that fee. I suppose you could do yourself a 90% OFF Coupon and only pay a few cents, but that’s still a really bad way to do business in my opinion. This is the main reason I left Plimus.

Additionnaly, Plimus made a change in the way they deal with Paypal payments. They require the payments to be made directly to the vendor (me). You therefore need your own Premium ou Business Paypal account in order to accept Paypal payments. I preferred the old way, where everything was centralized by my ecommerce provider.

Why I chose eSellerate

I needed the following features:
– Accept CC and Paypal payments worldwide
– Can set prices in EUR and USD
– Ability to create coupons
– Can generate serial keys based using my own algorithm
Among the most well-known solutions, there is BMTMicro, eSellerate and Share It. I checked the commission taken by the e-commerce provider (for a $4.99 game):

Provider Cost
Plimus $0.75
BMTMicro $1 (20%)
eSellerate $0.5
ShareIt $1

I logically chose the cheapest one. A few questions to their support to make sure there is no hidden fee (I got a quick and positive reply) and my account is created.
It took me some time to figure out how to set everything up as the interface and wording are different from Plimus but nothing too complicated.
My oldest game is sold $1.99 (Shapy deluxe, my first game). I had a problem as you can’t sell for less than $4.95. I contacted the support and they quickly allowed me to set prices as low as $1. Problem solved, great support, once again!

Tips to switch without trouble

The full process of changing provider was not as difficult as I thought. But there is one reason as to why it went that smooth : I did not hard-code any “buy now” links. Nowhere. All the “buy now” links I used (in-game, on the game page, sent to reviewers, sent to games sites) points to the same url on my own site. The destination is a simple php file where I redirect to the right eCommerce page using header(“Location”). I just had to change the buy now links once in the php files. I’m glad I did it properly from the beginning!

Conclusion

Simple one: I really should have done it before! I will see how eSellerate goes in the long run but the transition was smooth.
Feel free to visit my eSellerate store! Use the coupon “BLOG” to get 30% on any order!. The games on this store are from 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2011, you’ve been warned! ;)
Which provider are you using? Are you happy with it? Do you want to change? Feel free to comment here or contact me on twitter or facebook.