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Easy Digital Downloads is Joining Awesome Motive

Today, I’m excited to share that Easy Digital Downloads along with all other Sandhills Development plugins are joining Awesome Motive.

Since this is BIG NEWS, you probably have a lot of questions like: who is Awesome Motive, how did this acquisition come about, what will happen to the Easy Digital Downloads team, what’s coming next, etc.

Who’s Awesome Motive?

Awesome Motive is a company started by Syed Balkhi with a mission to help small businesses grow and compete with the big guys.

The AM team is behind some of the most popular plugins and resources in the WordPress ecosystem:

  • WPBeginner – the largest free WordPress resource site for beginners.
  • OptinMonster – popular conversion optimization software that helps you convert abandoning visitors into subscribers and customers.
  • WPForms – the most beginner friendly WordPress form builder.
  • MonsterInsights – the most popular WordPress Analytics plugin that helps you grow your business with confidence.
  • AIOSEO – the original WordPress SEO plugin to help you get more traffic.
  • WP Mail SMTP – the #1 plugin that helps improve your WordPress email deliverability.
  • SeedProd – the best drag & drop landing page builder for WordPress.
  • RafflePress – powerful WordPress giveaway and contest plugin to grow your website traffic.
  • Smash Balloon – most popular social media feeds plugin for WordPress.
  • PushEngage – leading web push notification software for small businesses.
  • SearchWP – the most advanced WordPress search plugin.
  • … and many more.

Collectively over 17 million websites use Awesome Motive plugins. 

And I’ve always admired their commitment to customer success.

Background Story

I have known Syed Balkhi for many years. We’ve both been in the WordPress space for a long time, and our paths have crossed at dozens of industry events.

Syed has supported Easy Digital Downloads since the early days by featuring it on WPBeginner.

Awesome Motive is also one of the biggest users of Easy Digital Downloads, AffiliateWP, and other Sandhills products.

Over the summer, Syed and I started chatting about what it would look like if Sandhills joined Awesome Motive. 

Given Awesome Motive’s track record of building popular plugins, their knowledge, resources, and Syed’s vision for the future, it made perfect sense.

Within just a few days, we had come to an agreement that allowed me to exit completely, so I can focus on my family while ensuring the entire Sandhills team joined AM.

My business partners: Chris Klosowski, Andrew Munro, and Phil Derksen will be joining AM as partners, and Chris will continue to lead Easy Digital Downloads.

I have a lot of respect for what Syed and the team has built at Awesome Motive, and I am confident that Easy Digital Downloads will only get better under their leadership.

Since Awesome Motive uses EDD at scale to power several of their large businesses most notably OptinMonster, WPForms, and MonsterInsights, they have built a lot of really cool internal tools and extensions that I know will benefit the community at large. 

What will happen to the Easy Digital Downloads Team?

As I mentioned, as part of this acquisition the Easy Digital Downloads team will be joining Awesome Motive.

My business partners: Chris Klosowski, Andrew Munro, and Phil Derksen will be joining AM as partners, and Chris will continue to lead Easy Digital Downloads.

I will stay on for the next month to help with transition before exiting the WordPress ecosystem to focus on my family. Read more in my personal blog post.

This acquisition also means that we will be hiring and growing the Easy Digital Downloads team, so we can bring even more powerful solutions your way (faster). 

See the Awesome Motive Careers page for open positions.

What’s Changing / Coming Next?

Aside from ownership change, it’s business as usual. You can continue to use the plugin that you love without any interruption. 

Behind the scenes, we’re upgrading our support workflows and growing the team, so we can better serve our community. 

In the coming weeks, you’ll likely see a lot more helpful tutorials on our blog to better highlight all the amazing features that are available in our plugins.

Chris will be working with Syed to create our future product roadmap, and we will be coming out with a lot of features that you have been asking for. This is going to be a game changer. 

Once again, I want to thank you for your continued support of Easy Digital Downloads, and Chris and the team can’t wait to bring more exciting features your way. 

Pippin Williamson
Founder of Easy Digital Downloads

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  1. Pippin Williamson

    🤯 Wow!

    Pippin, thanks for all you’ve done for the WordPress community. Great work on EDD, AffiliateWP, and all the Sandhills plugins. You put a big dent in the universe.

    To the whole Sandhills team: congratulations! Here’s to a bright future for all your work.

    1. Pippin Williamson
  2. Pippin Williamson

    This is wonderful news! Congratulations to Pippin, Syed & the respective teams.

    Thanks to Pippin for building EDD, AffiliateWP & other plugins. We’ve been using that to power our website & they’ve only gotten better.

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  4. Pippin Williamson

    You know the question is coming about lifetime licenses.

    I immediately noticed that this question is popping up in groups.

    Is it safe to assume that lifetime licenses with products such as AffiliateWP will be honored by the new owners?

    1. Pippin Williamson


      Thanks for the question, and I know it usually comes up when news like this is announced. All existing lifetime licenses will be honored.

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  6. Pippin Williamson

    Congratulations Pippins. It has been awesome seeing you build all these awesome products over the years.

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  7. Pippin Williamson

    All the best to you, Pippin. You were a lovely person, and that’s why EDD became so great. I hope I am wrong, but I am afraid that we will be really missing the days when you were running this. That said, we have only one life, so you are right to start doing what you really love. Enjoy it 🙂

    1. Pippin Williamson

      Thank you Jordy, I appreciate it! Easy Digital Downloads is in tremendously capable hands and the main team is still the same so you shouldn’t notice anything but positive changes.

  8. Pippin Williamson

    Pippen, I just want to say “thanks” for all that you’ve done for the WP Community and myself over the last 15 years. Your tireless dedication to providing quality products and help to those seeking to learn from your experience have always been inspiring. I think I learned more about WP development from your posts and examples than nearly any other WP author.

    Good luck with what comes next and hope you surprise us all, and yourself, with whatever comes “next” in your life 😉

    1. Pippin Williamson

      Thank you Spencer! It’s been a pleasure to help and teach what I could over the years. So glad to hear those efforts were helpful for you!

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    Congratulations Pippin! I felt sad at first to hear when I read the email announcement, especially because of the admiration and confidence I’ve had in you running Sandhills – the company and the products. However, I’m glad that you have decided that it is time to focus more on family which is so so important. Thank you so much for all you have done for the WP community all through the years. Your product, especially EDD has gone on to transform my life in more ways than one. I wish you the very best in the new phase and I’ll keep learning from you. I really admire the authenticity you have shown in your work and business and all. I trust that you have left Sandhills in capable hands. Best wishes.

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  13. Pippin Williamson

    It is hard to think EDD without Pippin. You are an inspiration for lot of WordPress developers. I really hope you will come back in future with some new ideas for the WordPress Community. Good Luck !!

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  15. Pippin Williamson

    I’ve been living under the rock for a while (aka outside the WordPress bubble) and completely missed this announcement. Congrats on a great exit and for all the excellent insights you have shared over the years! Syed’s an excellent person to hand your business over to. I’m sure this will go great!

    1. Pippin Williamson

      Thanks Ahmad! We know how it goes, tech/WordPress moves fast. Syed and the AM team are helping us make improvements faster. Great folks at Awesome Motive.

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