Its not often that I’ll do an opinion piece. But in this case…
The first time I heard mention of an e-Commerce theme I thought how daft. That was a number of years ago and I still think the same way. Although that said I’m never 100% close minded – the door should always swing both ways.
I’m not just being biased. Hear me out, from what I can tell, a lot of people seem to think that e-Commerce is merely uploading some pretty pictures, adding a price and a buy now button. I even watched John Ford make a Custom Post Type application for Products once. The whole time I just kept thinking… In one years time you might have finished the advanced shipping modules for people selling tangible goods, you might have nutted out the coupons and discount system, you might have v1 of your Taxes implementation working for some of the world, you might may have nailed a couple of payment gateways, you might even have decent security precautions to protect digital downloads, but you definitely won’t have implemented things like price & shipping matrix’s. And to be honest the list just goes on and on and on.
I think it is infinitely more wise for theme developers (and companies related to themes) to focus on themes and design, otherwise they might find their whole theming business model cannibalized by the hungry hoards demanding new features and support. I believe that they should be collaborating with people like us that have spent years learning the intricacies of the e-Commerce business. Heck 5 years on we still get people asking for certain “common” features. There aint nothing “common” about e-Commerce folks. So choose wisely when using your e-Commerce platform… is it a platform designed for growth like WP e-Commerce, or is it something new and uncharted, made by people who do not necessarily know all the ins and outs of this hugely complex industry.
Food for thought.