Templatic, a longstanding company with a name that rolls off the tongue, bills itself as offering “premium WordPress themes for your business.” Other theme sites we’ve interviewed here on WPHub have been both very general and very specific in nature, but Templatic seems to fill a niche right in the middle. It has been so successful that the theme company, which is largely based in India, just celebrated its five-year anniversary.
Templatic’s Community Manager is Vedran Fak, who seemingly does it all for the site, whose themes for WordPress include titles like “TechNews,” “iPhone App,” and “e-Commerce.” Fak was kind enough to give WPHub an inside look at how Templatic runs as well as a look at the future of the WordPress industry. This is Part 1 of our four-part interview.
WPHub: Thanks for joining us. Tell us about your role with Templatic and how you got started working for the site.
Vedran Fak: My official role is Community Manager. I was hired to write blog posts and manage the company’s Twitter and Facebook profiles originally. Even though I still do that, it’s just a fraction of the big picture for me now. Most of my time goes to support, helping customers get started and stuff like that. Although responding on Twitter and Facebook has its upside, it’s not really my thing.
WPHub: Did you have experience in customer relations before Templatic? How did you know the Templatic guys?
Vedran Fak: A friend of mine from college gave me the e-mail of the company’s founder, Bhavesh, and that’s how we got in touch. When my college buddy heard Bhavesh was looking for a Community Manager, he recommended me for the job. It was more luck than anything, to be honest. Other than creating a few WordPress sites, I had no experience whatsoever. To this day, I wonder why Bhavesh hired me, but I’m glad he did.
WPHub: Talk about what kinds of e-mails you get from customers and the process of responding to them.
Vedran Fak: The e-mails we get range from pre-sales and theme support to billing issues. Serious theme support issues are handled with the help of developers, and other stuff I can handle on my own. My PHP/CSS/HTML knowledge has definitely increased over the last two years, not enough to develop themes, but definitely adequate enough to explain how it works to members and provide support to anyone who needs it.
WPHub: What kinds of PHP/CSS/HTML questions do people ask? What coordination is required with your developers?
Vedran Fak: CSS questions mostly involve changing fonts and colors and hiding elements. PHP questions are unique every time. They mostly revolve around outputting a different value than before or simply changing the value. We can help people with simpler customizations (a few lines of code), but adding new features isn’t possible. We ask them to contact a freelancer in those cases.
In terms of coordination with developers, it’s hard, and the distance does not make things easier. But, it’s hard to complain about working conditions when you’re working from home.
WPHub: Where are the developers, where are your main offices, and how many employees do you have? Tell us about the general structure of Templatic.
Vedran Fak: Most of the company is located in Surat, India. All of the developers and designers are there and that’s basically our corporate headquarters. Outside of India, we have three employees: Russell (who is from the United States), Motaz (who is from Serbia), and me (I am from Croatia). The three of us mostly focus on support and documentation. The guys in India handle all of the development.
WPHub: Next week in Part 2 of our interview with Templatic’s Vedran Fak, we’ll discuss how and when Templatic was founded and talk about its niche in the industry. Visit Templatic.com for all of the themes!