According to various estimates, surveys, and experiments, it’s believed that there are nearly two billion websites online today. The number, by any measure, is beyond huge. This creates a lot of room for the web’s top website platforms to shine.
- To be more precise, the latest reported number is exactly 1,800,047,111 websites – as pointed out by Netcraft in their Web Server Survey of January 2017.
Think about it, 1.8 billion websites means that there’s more or less one website for every four people in the world. And that number is even more impressive considering that roughly only one half of the world’s population has internet access.
But does this mean that one in every four people is a programmer who knows how to code a website into existence?
Of course not! The secret is something else. The fact that we have nearly two billion websites online today is thanks to what we call Content Management Systems, or CMS for short.
- In a nutshell, a CMS is a piece of online software that enables anyone to build a working website without having to get their hands dirty under the hood, tinkering with all the code. In fact, no coding or programming knowledge is required in order to build / run a website based on a CMS.
That is why various popular CMS tools now dominate all lists of top website platforms! It’s estimated that around half of all websites run on some form of a CMS.
What are the TOP CMS platforms?
(TL;DR: WordPress, Joomla and Drupal are still the market leaders; find out more about them here: WordPress vs Drupal vs Joomla comparison.)
WordPress is the CMS to rule them all! There’s just no other way to say this. According to the latest data, WordPress controls nearly 60% of the CMS market! And, what’s even more impressive, nearly 30% of all websites run on WordPress. Again, that’s all websites. Knowing these numbers, it should come as no surprise that this very website runs on WordPress as well.
Joomla and Drupal follow behind WordPress with approximately 6.6% and 4.6% percent CMS market share respectively. Right after the pair, we have Magento – formerly the most popular e-commerce platform out there – currently at 2.4% CMS market share.
You’ve probably noticed the word “formerly” there. Well, Magento was THE thing back in the day, and surely the most well-known e-commerce solution of them all.
But then, WordPress came along and together with it the excellent WooCommerce plugin – WordPress’ take on e-commerce. Right now, according to the latest data, WooCommerce has grown above Magento in popularity.
So, when it comes to the top website platforms for e-commerce, WooCommerce has 10% market share, while Magento has 9%. WordPress and its various side-tools really are taking the web by storm.
There are also some new entrants to the CMS space this year, and we’re happy to tell you about them as well. Mainly, there are two top website platforms that deserve a huge shoutout. Here are the fastest growing popular CMS out there:
As you can see, WordPress still leads the pack here, but Shopify and Squarespace can’t be ignored. Over the years, they have attracted huge followings, and everyone who has ever used them swears by their abilities.
Your cut-out-‘n-keep list of the top website platforms and popular CMS
Most popular CMS one by one
- Market share: 59.9%
- Number of active sites tracked: 26,701,222
- Number of sites in top one million: 239,139
- Most popular sites built with it: BBC America, Time, The Rolling Stones, Beyonce, TechCrunch, Justin Bieber
Here’s quick guide on how you can make a website using WordPress.
Here’s a guide on how to make a blog with WordPress.
Here are the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.
- Market share: 6.6%
- Number of active sites tracked: 2,009,717
- Number of sites in top one million: 13,480
- Most popular sites built with it: Holiday Inn Express, U.K National Crime Agency, OpenVPN, High Charts
Here’s a guide on how to create a website using Joomla.
- Market share: 4.6%
- Number of active sites tracked: 964,820
- Number of sites in top one million: 23,330
- Most popular sites built with it: Linux, Harvard University, GE Transportation
Here’s a guide on how to get started with Drupal.
- Market share: 2.4%
- Number of active sites tracked: 372,915
- Number of sites in top one million: 12,095
- Most popular sites built with it: Land Rover, Bulgari, G2A, Kinguin, YMEUniverse
- Market share: 1.9%
- Number of active sites tracked: 758,571
- Number of sites in top one million:15,779
- Most popular sites built with it: WEB UPD8, Hyperbole and a Half, Blogger Buzz
- Market share: 1.8%
- Number of active sites tracked: 605,506
- Number of sites in top one million:11,587
- Most popular sites built with it: WaterAid, The Economist, Sunday Somewhere, Penguin Books
Here’s a guide on how to get started with Shopify.
Here’s a comparison of Shopify vs WordPress.
- Market share: 1.5%
- Number of active sites tracked: 200,210
- Number of sites in top one million: 3,925
- Most popular sites built with it: Citrus, Eldorado, Leroy Merlin
- Market share: 1.5%
- Number of active sites tracked: 582,629
- Number of sites in top one million: 3,568
- Most popular sites built with it: Sedo, Parallels, Notebookcheck
- Market share: 1.5%
- Number of active sites tracked: 1,390,307
- Number of sites in top one million: 9,799
- Most popular sites built with it: TrustPilot blog, Slidebean, Lyft, Wired
- Market share: 1.3%
- Number of active sites tracked: 262,342
- Number of sites in top one million: 2,099
- Most popular sites built with it: Asarayan, Decathlon, GeneveCompany
What are the TOP blogging platforms?
When it comes to blogging, there really can only be one winner, and that winner is WordPress.
WordPress dominates the web on all levels. Apart from the simple fact that WordPress runs 30% of all websites in existence, it rules the blogging space even more.
According to BuiltWith.com, WordPress is used on nearly 9 in 10 blogs. Here’s how it plays out in a bit more detail:
- WordPress – 89.3%
- Blogger – 5.9%
- MovableType – 0.1%
- Ghost – 0.1%
- Tumblr – sub 0.1%
- Blog Engine – sub 0.1%
- Medium – sub 0.1%
- Posthaven – sub 0.1%
If what you need is a blog, there really is no competition here. Just go with WordPress, like everyone else.
Here’s a guide of mine on how to get started with WordPress and build a blog yourself.
As you can see, there’s a lot of options when you’re wondering which of the top website platforms is going to be the best for your needs. For instance, there are different popular CMS you might consider when building a blog, a business website, an e-commerce store, and so on.
However, there are also popular CMS platforms that are quite universal and can run pretty much any type of website – WordPress being the prime example here.
In the end, though, picking the right CMS for yourself is not only about doing what everyone else is doing, but also about paying attention to the trends, and not missing out on what the cool kids are excited about these days.
So to discover what those top website platforms are – the ones on their rise to greatness – let’s look into the trends.
Here’s how popular some of the platforms featured above have been getting over the years:
These are very interesting! As you can see, the traditionally popular CMS platforms such as Joomla and Drupal have been on a steady decline for the past five years. Whereas players such as Squarespace and Shopify have been on the rise.
How to read this? Squarespace and Shopify is what the cool kinds use these days. Joomla and Drupal are perhaps what their parents used to use.
But hold on, that’s not the end of the story! Here’s what happens once we add WordPress to the mix:
Case closed. WordPress is still king.
If you want to build your own website, start here ← this is my step-by-step guide through the whole process.