WordPress maintains its lead as the most popular Content Management System (CMS) . However, 2020 and early 2021 brought some drastic changes to the CMS market. While WordPress is a heavyweight, other platforms continue to fight for market share, and their numbers continue to grow.
There are dozens of CMS platforms to choose from depending on the type of website or project you are working on. However, when it comes to CMS market share, only a few names are worth mentioning.
Before we start talking about individual platforms, let’s check out which are the top ten CMS in 2021 according to their global market shares :
CMS market share statistics as of April 2021.
The competition between CMS platforms is not very close – and hasn’t been for a long time. WordPress powers over 60% of all websites that use a CMS. Even beyond these platforms, more than 40% of all websites in the world use WordPress.
Despite WordPress’ dominance in the CMS market, it’s important to note that even a 1% market share still translates to millions of websites. For example, Magento is one of the most popular CMS platforms among enterprise websites, but it “only” has a 1% market share .
To understand the changing landscape of CMS market shares, we need to consider historical data and see how these numbers have changed in recent years. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at market share data for 2020 in particular, as COVID has had (and continues to have) a lasting impact on technology adoption.
Shopify’s market share increases dramatically
As of April 2020, Shopify has a market share of around 3.7% . A year later, the eCommerce CMS had an adoption rate of around 5.4% of the entire market. That’s a year-on-year growth of 1.7%, which is almost unheard of in the CMS market.
While many industries have felt the impact of the COVID pandemic, it has also presented an opportunity for technology companies. In that context, we can attribute part of Shopify’s dramatic growth in 2020 to the fact that many customers needed to find a way to bring in new income for their families.
With millions of workers around the world down or laid off due to business closures, Shopify has positioned itself as the most user-friendly option for launching an online store quickly. The e-commerce market has accelerated dramatically during 2020, and Shopify has provided an option for non-tech-savvy users to sell their products outside of traditional platforms like Amazon.
Shopify’s CMS market share growth has also translated into significant financial returns for the company. During the fourth quarter of 2020, Shopify reported earnings of $977.7 million , marking a 94% increase compared to the same period in 2019.
To increase adoption during tough financial times around the world, Shopify has expanded the length of its free trial period from 14 days to 90 days for merchants who joined the platform between March 21 and May 31, 2020. It has also expanded its channel of payment processing for more regions around the world, and introduced new marketing channels for its customers.
Joomla adoption drops to new heights
Joomla remains among the most popular CMS platforms in the world, but its market share has been in a free fall for the last decade – a trend that continued through 2020 and into 2021.
In early 2010, Joomla commanded an impressive 12% market share among CMS platforms. In 2021, that number dropped to 3.3%.
|Year||Joomla market share|
Joomla market share statistics from 2010 to 2021.
For a long time, Joomla was seen as the most direct competitor to WordPress . It offers a flexible system with lots of documentation, a large library of extensions, and an active community. More importantly, it’s a CMS geared more toward developers, which has earned it a loyal user base.
By its nature though, Joomla is not as easy to use as other CMS platforms like WordPress or even Shopify. It has a steep learning curve, making it a less attractive option in 2021, when most platforms brag about how easy they are to use, even if you’ve never written a single line of code.
Despite its waning popularity over the years, Joomla still commands an impressive market share when compared to platforms that share similar user bases such as Drupal and Magento. Most importantly, the Joomla community remains active.
Still, if Joomla doesn’t update its vision to find a wider audience, its market share will likely continue to slide as many opt for more user-friendly CMS platforms.
Squarespace and Wix maintain their market shares
When people think of Squarespace and Wix , they often label both as page building tools. While this is indisputably true, both Squarespace and Wix also offer CMS functionality. That, in a nutshell, is what separates them from purely design-based services.
Squarespace and Wix have the distinction of being two of the only CMS platforms that have largely maintained their respective market shares from 2020 to 2021. The former dropped from 2.7% to 2.5%, and Wix went from 2.3 % to 2.4%.
To put these numbers in context, let’s look at the market share of the two CMS platforms over the last six years:
|Year||Squarespace market share||Wix Market Share|
Square and Wix market share from 2016 to 2021.
Historically, Wix adoption has been slower when compared to Squarespace’s growth. However, from 2019 to 2021, Wix caught up with its main competitor. More importantly, it has continued to grow slightly over the past year, while Squarespace has lost a fraction of its support base.
While Wix and Squarespace are somewhat uniform in terms of features, Wix has an advantage in some ways. For example, Squarespace does not offer site backup functionality outside of allowing users to export data, which is unheard of for a CMS in 2021.
Also, Wix offers better support for multilingual websites.
It’s also worth noting that Wix offers cheaper entry-level plans than Squarespace, although the latter does a much better job from a marketing perspective.
In the near future, we expect both CMS platforms to continue to develop head-to-head in terms of market share.
WordPress continues to dominate the CMS market share
WordPress continues to dominate compared to other CMS platforms, and this trend is unlikely to change any time soon .
No other CMS comes close to matching its popularity. Even if you combine the market shares for the other top nine platforms, they still don’t add up to WordPress’ massive user base.
We are the first to admit to some bias when it comes to using WordPress. However, even if you’re not a WordPress enthusiast, it’s easy to see why this CMS continues to grow its market share on an annual basis.
During the past few years, WordPress has drastically reshaped the way most users approach building websites. Thanks to its new Block Editor , users can create pages using a much more visual approach:
As WordPress becomes more and more popular, it becomes even easier for new users to adopt the CMS, which only helps cement its role as an industry leader. More users translates to a more profitable environment for WordPress developers and service providers, all collaborating to make the platform more accessible.
WordPress market share has grown by approximately 1% per year since approximately 2016. From 2020 to 2021, the number increased from 62.1% to 64.7%, which means that it has exceeded expectations.
If you are thinking about launching a website or if you are in the market for a new CMS right now, WordPress is your best choice . With it, you get a CMS that can adapt to virtually any type of project, from blogging to e-commerce.
Thanks to the open source nature of WordPress, you can set up the CMS on any hosting platform you like, or modify it however you see fit. Plus, you have thousands of easy-to-install plugins and stylish themes to choose from to extend your site’s functionality and customize your style.
If you’re ready to get started with WordPress, check out our plans , they all come with the CMS pre-installed!