As a reviewer on GraphicRiver, I’ve grown to know the Review Guidelines very well and reviewed more files than grains of sand on the beach. I’ve reviewed some truly awesome files and then, some that aren’t so good.
In the case of the latter, the files usually haven’t followed the guidelines. It’s absolutely imperative you follow them to the tee. And so, with that in mind we’ve decided to publish a helpful two-parter series on how to increase the likelihood of having your file approved to our wonderful marketplace.
This post originally appeared on the GraphicRiver blog in 2009. Most of Ben’s points are still applicable today, though there may be categories created since the article that are not covered here. Any dead links have been removed.
Follow the Guidelines Carefully
I know you may think that you don’t need to read the guidelines, but you should. Guidelines can be found in your Author Dashboard and will help you in creating marketplace ready files. The majority of files we reject usually haven’t followed the guidelines in some way.
Envato have provided full guidelines for every category. These are available under the following links:
Read, read, and read these guidelines again. Familiarize yourself with them and you’ll be one step closer to getting your file approved successfully. I asked Arik Beremzon (ArikB), another review team member to comment on the subject of reviewing, and he backed me up here. “Read, read, and then re-read the guidelines” Arik told me. I agree wholeheartedly.
Manager note: We’re taking the great feedback we’ve received from authors and updating our upload guidelines this month. So even if you’re familiar with the guidelines document–check back from time to time for clarification!
Thumbnail, Preview and High-Res Images
One of the most overlooked elements of file uploads, we often see authors submit Thumbnail, Preview or High-Res images that we cannot accept. These images must all be .JPG for a start. We often see submissions in .PNG or .GIF, but we do not support these filetypes. Additionally, saving these elements for the web (an option in Photoshop) will dramatically decrease loading times of the site and don’t forget to set Color Mode to RGB.
Then we have the issue of sizing. Often times an author will upload a thumbnail thats 120px X 120px. What’s up with that you say?
The guidelines state that thumbnails must be 80px X 80px. Preview images need to 590px wide but height will be governed by the proportions of your file. This image is displayed above your Item Description, so try to include your file and any other color or size variations you’ve included for download to maximize sales. Failing to set the sizes correctly will see your file rejected for improvements, so keep that in mind.
Know Your Categories
Think long and hard about which category to place your file in. If you get it wrong, reviewers will always point out which category it would make more sense to submit to, however you can cut this step out if you make sure your familiar with what classifies each category.
Graphics are typically .PSD files. Popular files include backgrounds, design elements, web ui, and buttons. You can include .png and .jpg versions of your files also.
Vectors are basically any .eps file. If you are uploading a item containing an .eps file and it isn’t a design template this is the most sensible category to upload it in. Vectors usually incorporates illustrations and re-usable graphics.
Textures are patterns, often macro photos or graphics, that can be used as textures or elements in design projects. JPG, PNG, or PSDs are accepted here.
Add-ons are resources for use in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. Brushes, Textures and Styles are provided as their appropriate format (abr, pat, asl, etc)
Isolated Objects are stock photographs of items that have been cropped or seperated from their background in Photoshop. PSDs are accepted.
Icons are the final category. It’s important you differentiate between icons and buttons for a start. An icon is literally that, something that represents another object (and thus ionizing it). A button usually has an icon overlaid onto it, and is hence a button, not an icon. Icons can be provided as .psd, png, and .eps.
Forgetting to Include Font or Asset information
When you upload, make use of the Notes to Reviewer field. This is flagged up when reviewing the file and allows reviewers to gain additional insight into a file. Try including information about any assets and font’s you’ve used, as well as general information about the file and any changes you may have been asked to make by a previous reviewer.
In the Item Description and File for Download, including font information with a link to download / purchase the font. Including these details in the Item Description lets buyers see what additional resources they may need to purchase along with your file. This is another frequent issue that arises, so don’t forget to include that info.
As a side note, if your font is a commercial font, simply include a link to the font purchase page. We often see users include a link to some rather spurious font download sites, that offer these fonts for free illegally.
Tip: If your file is complex and has many layers or elements of functionality, consider creating a help file. This is a .txt or .pdf file which gives buyers an idea of how to get using your file. Remember, not everyone is a Photoshop guru or illustrator master so bear that in mind when creating your help file.
We come across .rar files quite a lot. The item package should be supplied as a .zip. Often authors will contact us telling us .rar files are more efficient at compression e.t.c but currently the marketplaces support .zip files only.
Stay tuned next week when we’ll hear more important tips from the review team regarding design, licensing, and assets!