It’s no secret that WordPress is one of the most popular ways to build a website. But just how popular is WordPress? And does WordPress’ popularity extend beyond its blogging platform roots?
Spoiler alert – the answers are that:
WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system, so it’s about as popular as can be.
WordPress dominates other markets, like eCommerce, so it’s definitely not just for blogging.
And to show you where those conclusions came from, we’ve collected some mind-boggling statistics about WordPress’ market share, as well as the market share of two of the most popular eCommerce plugins for WordPress – WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads.
WordPress’ market share is 34% of all websites
According to W3Techs, WordPress powers 34% of all the websites on the Internet, including those without a content management system (CMS) or with a custom-coded CMS. Or to put it another way, WordPress powers over one-third of the web! And if you limit the data set to only websites with a known CMS, WordPress’ market share gets even more dominant.
In that case, WordPress holds a 60% market share for content management systems on websites with a known CMS. How does that compare to the market share of other popular content management systems? Let’s take a peek:
% All Websites
% CMS Market
While much has been made of hosted website builder tools like Squarespace and Wix, the numbers show that WordPress isn’t in any danger of being dethroned any time soon! And WordPress also holds a dominant position over Joomla and Drupal, two other popular self-hosted content management systems.
Is WordPress just used by lots of small sites?
No! To dig deeper into how WordPress’ market share is divided, we turned to BuiltWith. BuiltWith lets you see market share for websites that meet specific criteria, like being in the Quantcast Top 10k (a list that tries to collect the 10,000 most-trafficked websites on the Internet).
Here’s how WordPress’ market share fares when you segment by Quantcast rank:
Sites in Quantcast Top 10k – WordPress holds a 37.18% market share
Sites in Quantcast Top 100k – WordPress holds a 34.92% market share
If you compare this to WordPress’ overall market share of 33.6%, WordPress is even more popular among highly-trafficked websites.
Is WordPress’ market share still growing?
Yes! WordPress’ market share isn’t just “still growing”, it’s actually been consistently growing at roughly the same rate for as long as we have data. So how quickly is WordPress growing? Let’s start with the numbers for last year.
At the start of 2017, WordPress powered 27.3% of all websites. By April 2019, WordPress had made it to the current market share of 33.6%. Some quick math should tell you that WordPress gobbled up an additional 6.3% of the total website market – good for ~23.0% growth.
How does that square up with years past? Here’s WordPress’ overall market share going all the way back to 2011, according to W3Techs:
As you can see, WordPress has been consistently growing its market share by ~1-4% (in overall market share numbers) for the past 8 years. And it shows no signs of slowing down. If this trend continues, it won’t be long until WordPress is powering one-third of all the websites on the Internet.
As of June 2019, WordPress core has had 39,701 commits, 358 releases, and has 51 contributors from around the globe.
How does WordPress’ growth compare with other content management systems?
So WordPress is growing…but is it growing faster than the competition? That’s a trickier question to answer. With respect to self-hosted content management systems, WordPress is still the growth leader.
From 2018 to 2019:
Joomla’s market share actually decreased from 3.1% to 3.0%
Drupal’s market share decreased from 2.2% to 1.9%
In terms of year-on-year growth, that means:
Joomla shrank by 3.2%
Drupal shrank by 13.6%
While those numbers aren’t keeping pace with WordPress, things are a little bit different with hosted website builders.
While tools like Squarespace and Wix still comprise a tiny percentage of the overall market, they are experiencing rapid growth in comparison to self-hosted content management systems.
From 2018 to 2019:
Squarespace’s market share increased from 0.7% to 1.5%
Wix’s market share increased from 0.4% to 1.0%
In terms of year-on-year growth, that means:
Squarespace grew by 114%
Wix grew by 149%
So while WordPress is still the dominant player, hosted website builders are growing at a faster rate. You can also see these growth trends play themselves out in Google Trends, where Joomla and Drupal (and to a lesser extent, WordPress) have declined or remained flat, while Squarespace and Wix are generating increasing interest:
WooCommerce Market Share
Because WordPress had its origins in blogging, you might be surprised to realize how dominant WordPress is in other areas – notably, eCommerce.
Of the Top 1 Million Sites on the Internet, WooCommerce is still the most popular solution, but with a market share of 22%.
How does WooCommerce’s market share compare to Shopify?
While WooCommerce is a market leader, Shopify is competitive, and even leading, in some categories. Here’s how WooCommerce’s market share compares to Shopify when you segment by website popularity:
Top Million Sites
Top 100k Sites
Top 10k Sites
When you look at only the Top 100k or Top 10k most popular websites on the Internet, Shopify is actually the market leader. But, it’s worth pointing out that only 51,271 websites in that Top 100k slice are running a known eCommerce platform, so the sample size is not very large. And in terms of the actual number of sites in the Top 10k Sites running each platform:
373 sites are using Shopify
106 sites are using WooCommerce
Easy Digital Downloads market share
While it’s not nearly as popular as WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads is still a small, but noticeable, player in the eCommerce industry.
According to BuiltWith, Easy Digital Downloads powers 0.2% of the BuiltWith Top Million (an estimate of the one million most popular websites on the Internet).
Here’s to the world’s most popular CMS
While the growth of hosted website builders like Squarespace, Wix, and Shopify is something to pay attention to, all the numbers add up to one conclusion: WordPress is, without a doubt, the world’s most popular way to build a website.
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