Surprising Facts And Figures – An Overview Of WordPress For Business

This blog post is part of a comprehensive article series aimed at helping small businesses grow and succeed online with the WordPress platform.

WordPress

For an overview of the article series, see this post: The Business Owner's Guide To WordPress

In this article, we present a number of surprising WordPress statistics that will help you understand why millions of businesses around the world choose WordPress to power their websites and what kind of businesses are using WordPress today.

WordPress: Statistics And Popularity

The quick version:

  • WordPress began in 2003.
  • WordPress offers users the choice of two formats: a hosted platform (WordPress.com) and as a self-hosted, downloadable application (WordPress.org).
  • 23 out of every one hundred new domains registered in the U.S. are for a new WordPress site.
  • There are over 60 million installations of WordPress. This number grows significantly everyday.
  • Over one-sixth of all websites around the world are driven by WordPress.
  • More than 60% of all sites worldwide that use a CMS application are powered by WordPress.
  • Over 35 million searches made each month on Google are for WordPress related terms.
  • WordPress is completely free to download, use and modify. The WordPress application is built using an open source content management system.
  • WordPress code is worked on by volunteers. People from all around the world work on developing and improving WordPress functionality each day.
  • The WordPress software is regularly updated to eliminate bugs and improve its usage and security.
  • WordPress can deliver your content online to visitors worldwide. WordPress has been translated and localized into over seventy international languages.
  • The WordPress repository currently makes available thousands of free WordPress plugins, themes and widgets to WordPress users.
  • There is almost no limit to what can be built using WordPress.

WordPress Market Share

A content management system (CMS), is a website tool for non-technical users. It is a web application designed to make it easier for non-technical website users to add, edit and manage content on their site.

WordPress began in 2003. It was originally a simple program developed by co-founders Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little. It is currently the most downloaded self-hosted content management system (CMS) in the world, used on millions of sites and seen by tens of millions of people every day.

WordPress is owned by Automattic.com, which currently employs around 300 people, all of whom are home-based. Despite its distributed model and so few employees, WordPress.com (the hosted version of the software) currently attracts more unique visitors than Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, eBay and Yahoo.com ...

WordPress (hosted) unique visits

(WordPress.com unique monthly visitors. Source: Automattic.com)

Consider the following WordPress usage figures:

Over 60% of all websites worldwide are not CMS-based. Of those that are, WordPress is the leader, with more than 60% of total market share.

WordPress usage stats

WP usage statistics

In terms of CMS dominance, no other platform even comes close to WordPress ...

WP usage statistics

In fact, more and more websites are now using the WordPress CMS application.

WordPress is so popular, that trying to keep up with statistics on WordPress is quite difficult, because the information changes so frequently.

For example, at the time this post was written, this is the current number of downloads of the latest WordPress version ...

current number of downloads of the latest WordPress version

(Source: https://wordpress.org/download/counter)

Info

Note: The above download figure represents only the latest version of WordPress. Less than half of all current users have upgraded their WP installations to the latest version ...

WordPress versions currently in use

(WP versions currently in use. Source: https://wordpress.org/about/stats)

As this article was being written, the number of downloads had already grown. If you were to click on the link above and visit the WordPress download counter site, you you will no doubt see a much higher figure ... perhaps even a newer version, as the WordPress developer team continually updates the software to fix security issues and bugs, and improve or add new features.

Regarding updates, WordPress has made available to users over 100 new updates in its first 11 years of existence ...

WordPress release archive

(Over 100 new WordPress versions have been made available since 2003)

WordPress currently releases a new software version every 3-4 months or so ...

WP release versions

(WordPress regularly releases new versions honoring famous Jazz musicians)

Information

Curiously enough, all major WordPress version updates are traditionally named in honor of Jazz musicians, eg:

  • v.2.1 = Ella Fitzgerald (January 22, 2007),
  • v.2.3 = Dexter Gordon (September 24, 2007),
  • v.2.9 = Carmen McRae (December 18, 2009),
  • v.3.6 = Oscar Peterson (August 1, 2013),
  • v.4.0 = Benny Goodman (September 4, 2014),
  • etc ...

Who Is Using WordPress?

A better question is who doesn't use WordPress nowadays? All types of enterprises and people from all walks of life use WordPress to publish content about every kind of topic imaginable.

Leading corporations, businesses, technology companies, celebrities, sports stars, famous artists, colleges, government sectors, non-profit organizations - even nations use WordPress-powered sites ...

WordPress.org Web Site Showcase

WordPress Web Site Showcase

Here are just some of the growing number of sites, institutions and people who have chosen to build their online presence with WordPress:

  • Global Brands & Companies: Sony Music, Glad, Groupe Renault, McDonald's Singapore, Vogue, etc ...
  • Celebrities, Politicians, Sports Stars, Actors & Musicians: Garth Brooks, Ariana Grande, Lily Allen, Justin Bieber, Usain Bolt, The Rolling Stones, Dave Matthews Band, Gabriel Iglesias, Russell Brand, etc ...
  • Colleges & Educational Institutions: Georgia State University, International Relations Online at American University, Bates College, Carleton University, etc.
  • Magazines & News Media: Thrive Magazine, The Australian, Facebook Newsroom, LinkedIn, etc.
  • Governments, Not For Profits & Community Organizations: Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African Art, Chicago Weather Center, São Paulo Carnival, CURE International, Ovarian Cancer National Alliance, etc.

Earlier, we mentioned that WordPress is available as a hosted application (WordPress.com) and as a self-hosted, downloadable application (WordPress.org).

  • Businesses clearly prefer the self-hosted version, which can be installed on their own domain and customized to suit their needs. In fact, most WordPress self-hosted installations are set up for business uses.
  • More than half of all WordPress users use the hosted version on WordPress.com
  • In 2014, WordPress blogs (blogs hosted either on WordPress.com or self-hosted WordPress sites) published on average 17 new blog posts every second (around 1.5 million posts per day).

WordPress provides a live map that lets you see blog post updates around the world in real-time ...

WordPress (Hosted Version) - Activity Woldwide

WordPress (Hosted Version) - Live Activity

In other articles we will discuss the main differences between WordPress.com (hosted) vs WordPress.org (self-hosted) versions.

General WordPress Statistics

WordPress Plugins

WordPress users have access to over 37,000 plugins at no cost from the WordPress plugin directory ...

WP free plugins directory

(WordPress.org plugin directory)

For more information about plugins go here: Add New Features And Functionality To Your Site With Plugins

WordPress Themes

WordPress users also have access to over 1,700 themes for free ...

WordPress.org free themes directory

(WordPress theme directory)

We have written a detailed article about themes here: A Newbies' Guide To Understanding WP Themes

WordPress Language Translations

WordPress has been translated and localized into over seventy languages and dialects in addition to English ...

WordPress language translations

(WordPress languages)

Searching Online For WordPress

The search term "WordPress" alone receives around 2.7 million monthly searches on Google. Additional WordPress-related terms (e.g. "WordPress themes", "WP plugins", "WordPress tutorials", etc. brings the total number of online searches for WordPress terms to around 30 million ...

(WordPress searches online)

(WP-related searches online)

If you compare searches for WordPress to other CMS platforms, WordPress gets searched online 5 x more than Joomla and 9x more often than Drupal.

WordPress Services

According to WordPress' own "State of the Word" 2014 survey, 25% of all WP users who answered the survey said that they make a full-time living off WordPress. An earlier survey conducted by WordPress (2012) also found that the average hourly rate of WordPress projects is US$50.

You can find WordPress designers and developers for hire at freelancing sites like ODesk ...

WP Freelance Developers ODesk.com

According to ODesk, typical WordPress job cost ranges are between $10 - $500 ...

WP Job Cost Overview - ODesk

(Source: ODesk)

As you can clearly see from the above information, there is no end in sight for how much further WordPress can continue to grow.

In other articles, you will learn:

  • Why WordPress is the best choice when you need a vehicle to grow your small business online,
  • Over 50 reasons why you should choose WordPress for your website or blog, including a detailed review of the unique benefits, features and advantages of using the WordPress platform,
  • How to automate your business marketing with WordPress,
  • How to drive targeted visitors to your site, get more leads, and how to sell more products and services with WordPress.
  • Plus, we'll provide new "how to" tutorials and actual tips on how you can use WordPress and expand your business presence online, and save thousands of dollars on the costs of website development and web design.

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Sources:

The above statistics were sourced from various locations around the web, including the following sites:

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