More Than Half Of Websites Do Not Use CMS; One In Four Sites Are Powered By WordPress

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One in four websites are now powered by the WordPress content management system (CMS), according to Automattic, the company behind WordPress. The two closest competitors, Joomla and Drupal, combined are used by 4.9% of websites. WordPress has an even more dominant position among CMS-based small business websites (SMB). Online security service CodeGuard estimates that 78.8% of CMS-based small business websites are built on WordPress.

Automattic also notes that currently more than half of websites (57%) do not use a standard CMS. These are primarily stand-alone static websites and sites that are hosted on website platforms, such as, GoDaddy,, Volusion and others. Converting those sites to WordPress is seen as a huge opportunity.

Although WordPress usage dominates among websites, using a standard CMS is not very common among the top-1000 sites. More than 90% of the top-1000 of are custom developments. One of the reasons WordPress has been able to grow to a dominant position in the CMS market can be contributed to its wide ecosystem of plugins, themes and specialized hosting services that make it easy to install, build and maintain WordPress-based websites on a standard shared hosting account.

WordPress Market Share Among CMS-based Websites

WordPress’ market share among the 300+ content management systems tracked by W3Techs, a company that provides information about the usage of various types of technologies on the web, is now at 58.7%. The two closest competitors, according to W3Techs, are Joomla and Drupal, with a market share of 6.6% and 5.0%, respectively.

W3Techs only counts websites that are reachable via their own domain name and receive enough traffic to make it in the top-10 million Alexa sites.

WordPress not only gains market share by converting non-CMS sites to its CMS, but also by switching Joomla, Drupal and Blogger-based sites to WordPress. There are also systems that gain sites from WordPress. Most notably Magento and Shopify, ecommerce platforms that offer more sophisticated features than a WordPress + Woo-commerce combination. Compared to the overall WordPress user base, these defections are almost negligible.

CMS Share Among Small Business Websites

WordPress has an even more dominant position among CMS-based small business websites (SMB). Research conducted early this year by CodeGuard, an online security company offering backup and restore services, revealed that a large majority of the 250,000 SMB sites it monitors use WordPress over Joomla, Drupal and others. Based on the research CodeGuard estimates that the WordPress market share among CMS-based websites is currently at 78.8%. Joomla and Drupal are at 7.2% and 5.3%, respectively, according to CodeGuard.

Among the sites using WordPress, Askimet was the top installed plugin, and Avada was the most often used theme. The survey also revealed that 51% of the sites they track were were not optimized for mobile.

CMS-based website stats