Last Updated: November 16, 2021
Last night I had an interesting chat that inspired me to write this article about WordPress statistics.
I went out for drinks with a friend I haven’t seen in a while. She is a fantastic handicraft artist, but when it comes to computers or technology in general…
Let’s just say she prefers to keep away.
So, one topic led to another, and I found myself talking about one of my hobby projects — a fantasy football game I run among a bunch of friends. I know, I know, guys, but she seemed really interested in the conversation.
I was just going on about our new HTML website for the game when she stopped me:
“Wait, HTML? Is that something like WordPress?”
That caught me by surprise!
No, that she couldn’t tell the difference between WP and HTML — that’s totally relatable.
The mere fact she knew about WordPress when she is so far away from technology as one can be, was fascinating for me.
That got me thinking:
Just how many people know about WordPress?
WordPress Statistics that Awe and Stun (Editor’s Choice):
- Over 34% of live websites on the internet utilize WordPress.
- Most WordPress sites come from the US, the UK, Russia, and Germany.
- Every day 500+ new WP installations go live.
- There are over 5,800 themes and 52,100 plugins in the WordPress repository.
- The most popular CMS is the victim in 9 out of 10 hacking attempts.
- 25% of users make a living off of their WP-related projects.
Today we will break down the latest WordPress stats and see what keeps the prominent CMS on top for such a long time.
Let’s start with an overview of the website building industry and how WP became king.
1. WordPress Market Share Statistics
WordPress powers a staggering 34.5% of all websites on the internet. It is even more dominant in the CMS industry — the versatile app reigns supreme over 61.1% of the niche.
- WP’s closest competitors on the CMS market are Joomla and Drupal, with 5.0% and 3.8% respectively.
- In terms of year-to-year growth, the competition is falling behind consistently — last year Joomla shrank by 3.2% and Drupal by 13.6%.
- Nearly 32% of the top 1 million websites over the Web are WP-powered. That is 318,828 sites to be exact.
- The total number of WordPress sites worldwide now exceeds 75 million.
- The top three countries with most WordPress users are the United States, the United Kingdom, and Russia.
- The number of WP offices? Zero. Parent company Automattic even had to close their San Francisco office as it stayed empty most of the time.
These WordPress stats paint a very clear picture — WP plays in a league of its own. The competition is so far behind even their accumulated efforts won’t outmatch WP.
No wonder why so many celebrities (Sly Stallone, Beyonce, Kobe Bryant) and big brands (CNN, Time, TechCrunch) trust WordPress with their online image.
2. WordPress Growth Statistics
WordPress started in 2003 as simple blogging software and has been growing ever since. The popular CMS expanded its market share from 13.1% to 34.5% in the span of eight years.
- In January 2011 there were about 12,000 live WordPress websites. Fast forward to 2019, and we are now over the 24,808,000 threshold.
- Every day an average of 638 new WP sites go online and say their first Hello World!
- What is the second-fastest-growing CMS? WooCommerce spawns over 361 websites daily. Woo is also a WP product.
- Blogging stats reveal 70 million new posts and 77 million new comments pop up on the WordPress pages every month.
- Evolution never stops. A fresh WP core update pops up every 152 days on average.
Such numbers can easily sound discouraging (or inspiring, who knows) for the competition. WordPress is growing by leaps and bounds, and there seems to be no stopping the CMS king. Unless something revolutionary is in the works, WP will probably continue to top the charts for a long time.
A big part of that success is the theme and plugin infrastructure.
3. WordPress Theme Statistics
There are over 5,800 free themes in the WordPress repository. Those are just the ones on the official website. You can find thousands more stunning visuals can on third-party marketplaces like Themeforest (11,000) and TemplateMonster (46,000).
- The first WordPress theme, named Kubrick, came to be in 2005, along with the WP 1.5 version release. Before that, users weren’t able to switch between themes.
- The three most popular WordPress templates are Divi, Avada, and Genesis, securing nearly 17% of the market share.
- Six of the top 10 free themes are developed by the WP parent company, Automattic. The other four are Hestia, Mesmerize, OceanWP, and Sydney.
- Paid templates are hugely popular as well. The average premium theme will cost you around $40.
- The blog stats reveal Avada as the most popular paid theme. Its license costs $60 and currently powers 525,000+ websites.
Stunning visuals have the power to provoke emotions and trigger subconscious cues. In short:
Great designs sell!
Ever since users got the opportunity to change themes, they have exploited that right to the maximum. In fact, WordPress statistics from September 2018 show users have switched between templates over 2.1 million times for the month alone.
Once you wow visitors with your designs, it’s time to keep them with functionality.
4. WordPress Plugin Statistics
At the time of writing, there are 55,192 plugins in the WordPress directory. Those add-ons let you do everything — from securing and optimizing your website to adding multimedia and social media buttons.
- The ten most popular plugins are: Contact Form 7, Yoast, Akismet, Classic Editor, Jetpack, WooCommerce, WordPress Importer, WordFence, Really Simple SSL, and Duplicate Forms.
- Classic Editor is the most installed plugin in the last year with over 4 million installations. That is largely due to the slow adoption of the new Gutenberg editor.
- The best selling premium WP plugin is Visual Composer (2340 sales per day), followed by Slider Revolution (1411) and LayerSlider 5 (214).
- WooCommerce is the ecommerce market leader, powering more than 39% (or about 1.5 million) of online stores.
- Hello Dolly is a practically useless plugin, yet it still comes pre-installed with new WP versions. This pointless add-on is active on over 900,000 installations, according to 2019 WordPress Statistics.
And that’s just a small glimpse at what WordPress plugins are really capable of. The best thing about them is that new ones are always on the way and popular old ones get frequent updates, feature inclusions, and bug fixes.
All this by YOU, the people!
WordPress is an open-source content management system so everyone has access to tinker away with the source code. As great as this is (for the above reasons), it also opens a doorway for people with malicious intent to take advantage.
Which takes us to:
5. WordPress Security Statistics
WordPress tops another ranking — according to web security giant Sucuri, WP is the most frequently hacked CMS. It is the victim of a mind-boggling 90% of all hack attempts.
- Plugins are the most common doorway for hacker breaches, with 52% of the cases. The other weak points are the WP core (37%) and WP themes (11%).
- WooCommerce is the plugin with the most known vulnerabilities (20). Not far behind are NextGen Gallery (18) and W3 Total Cache (17).
- WordPress was responsible for the largest data breach to journalists in history — a hacked mail server compromised over 4.8 million emails.
- Cross-scripting (XSS) attacks are the most popular type of vulnerability in nearly 40% of the cases. SQL injections come second with 15%.
- Weak passwords account for 8% of successful hacking attempts.
Popularity comes at a price, and the price WordPress has to pay is having a bullseye every time a hacker decides to pull off a stunt.
But don’t worry:
Keeping your website secure is not necessarily a hard task, but one you need to do regularly.
Choose a reliable host.
Update your application, theme, and plugins to the latest stable version.
Install a dependable security plugin.
Keep passwords strong and secure.
You see, it’s nothing extraordinary, you just need to make a habit out of it.
You and a whole lot of other people…
6. WordPress Community Statistics
The WP community is one of the largest in the world. Latest WordPress website stats show over 511,000 active members and 1300 meetup groups around the globe.
- The first WordCamp took place in San Francisco, in 2006. Fans have enjoyed over 1025 events in 75 cities, across six continents so far.
- All WP events and meetups are broadcasted on WordPress.tv for everyone who can’t attend
- WordCamp Europe 2017 was the most successful event to date, gathering 1900 attendees from 79 countries.
- WordCamps are not the only events for WP enthusiasts — other notable meetups include WPCampus, WooConf, and Pressnomics.
- Contributors from all over the world have helped translating the software in more than 56 languages.
As you can see, choosing WordPress as your CMS comes with the added benefit of an active and helpful community guiding you along the way. Many of the theme and plugin developers are also happy to assist with handling their creations.
The mutual love for WordPress brings thousands of people together. So much so, that even the massive WordCamp events worldwide are organized and supported solely by volunteers.
It’s no surprise many of them choose to monetize WP one way or the other.
7. WordPress Economy Statistics
Whether you are developing premium tools for WordPress or sell your goodies through a WP online shop, people are making good money off the platform. In fact, 25% of people entirely rely on this CMS for revenue.
- Entry-level developers make about $44,000 per year on average. In comparison, mid-level devs get around $62,277, and experts can easily expect $87,000 or more.
- More than 50% of theme developers report they make over $1,000/mo through the Envato marketplace. Nearly 5% make $10,000/mo.
- The average yearly salary for “WordPress jobs” is $71,078. The top salary earners are front end developers, web developers, and marketing managers.
- If you are looking for a freelancer to build your new WP website, you can expect anything between $1,000-$15,000 for the bill.
- Where are the most WP job openings? The WordPress statistics unveil there are 460 open positions in New York, NY, 239 in Washington DC, and 165 in Austin, TX.
So, WordPress might be free and open-source, but there are still a ton of people who make a good buck off of it. Sure, the numbers might be lower outside the US, but they are still high enough related to the cost of living in the resident country.
WP supercharges a multi-billion dollar economy and brings food to the table to thousands of families worldwide.
Who would’ve thought the software would come such a long way.
I’m sure even Matt Mullenweg didn’t dream so boldly.
The numbers can’t be more obvious — WordPress is the #1 CMS by a long shot and for a good reason too.
Today, we have found the answers to frequently asked questions like:
How long has WordPress been around?
How big is the WP market share?
How many websites use WordPress?
Millions of people have already chosen the CMS as the primary web-building tool for their online projects.
Judging by the WordPress statistics, fans can easily start their own country. I imagine it will have crowded streets, plugin shops, theme galleries, and Matt Mullenweg as honorary king.
It will not be a paradise, by any means, though.
Picture it as Gotham.
A glorious but crime-infested city. Prying eyes lurk behind every corner, and you need proper security precautions if you intend to roam the streets at night.
Our Batman is still nowhere to be found and until he (hopefully) comes — the citizens better work together toward brighter days.