There are more tools than ever to help you build your own website. WordPress is a well known content management system (CMS), but there’s plenty of competition nipping at its heels in the form of website builders – including Wix. Here we take a look at the latest CMS market share stats for 2021, to see who’s doing better: WordPress or Wix?
CMS vs Website Builder: What’s the Difference?
Time for a recap. WordPress is a content management system (CMS), while Wix is a website builder.
The terms CMS and website builder are sometimes used interchangeably, but if you’re looking for the perfect tool to build a website it’s important to know the difference.
Both do exactly what the name suggests.
A content management system manages content on your site – like blog posts. They’re open source, so you can customize any and every aspect. You can add a theme on top, and extend functionality with plugins.
A website builder, meanwhile, is a tool to help you easily build a website using set “building blocks”. Typically, website builders come with drag-and-drop tools and layout options to help you customize your site. Think of it like a digital lego set.
CMS and website builders are often considered in the same category. And, for the sake of comparison, that is how we will consider them in this exploration of market share stats.
The Popularity of CMS + Website Builders Explained
Both website builders and content management systems are hugely popular. Over half of all websites use a CMS or site builder. So, why do people love them so much?
To (briefly) answer that question, we have to take a look at the history of the internet. Once upon a time, building a website was a very technical affair. Coding knowledge and web development skills were required to build even the most basic of websites. CMS have revolutionized the process.
Most software, whether CMS or website builder, require little to no technical knowledge. Thanks to platforms like WordPress or Wix, you can build your own website without ever touching a single line of code.
Due to their popularity, the market has exploded. There’s more choice than ever and that poses more questions – which software is the internet’s favourite? Is it WordPress or Wix? Or another platform entirely?
Let’s jump into the stats to find out.
WordPress or Wix? Important Market Share Stats for 2021
Let’s start by looking at Wix.
Wix is a freemium website builder, founded in 2006. According to CMS market share statistics from W3Techs, Wix is used on 1.7% of all websites using a known content management system. This gives the platform a 2.6% market share of all sites on the internet.
Now let’s take a similar look at WordPress.
WP is a CMS, established in 2003. According to W3Techs, WordPress is used by 65.2% of all websites using a known CMS. This gives WP a 42.4% market share of all sites on the internet.
Side by Side Comparison
It’s easier to understand the difference between WordPress and Wix when we look at the stats side by side.
This graph from W3Techs shows the stark comparison between the two. WordPress races ahead both in absolute usage percentage and market share.
We can also take a closer look, examining usage on websites that sit amongst the top for traffic worldwide.
Of the top 1,000 websites, WordPress is used on 50.8% – over half! Wix is used on just 0.3% of the same group.
The Stats in Context
To better understand the stats and graphs, it’s important to look at both platforms in the context of the CMS market as a whole.
W3Techs helps us once again. This graph shows the absolute usage and CMS market share for the top ten CMS and website builders.
It clearly shows that WordPress sits at the top of the list in terms of both usage and market share. Wix, meanwhile, sits at fifth in the rankings.
However, this graph helps us to understand how far ahead WordPress is. WP is the only CMS on the market with a share larger than 10%. Wix is nestled amongst the competition, with figures not too dissimilar to the rest.
In this way, WordPress is a bit of outlier when it comes to market share statistics – it’s so far ahead of the competition that, for the time being at least, it’s almost untouchable.
Which CMS Has Seen Most Growth?
We know that WordPress is racing ahead of the competition in terms of market share, but is the platform still seeing growth? Or is there a chance a different platform could steal the title? Let’s look at the facts.
W3Techs shows growth for the most popular CMS for the period 2011 to 2021. We can see that both WordPress and Wix have seen growth in this time.
Since 2011, Wix has increased its market share from less than 0.01% to 1.7%. Not too shabby. WordPress meanwhile has increased its share from 13.1% to 42.4%. Even more impressive. Neither platform has seen any dips in popularity year on year.
How about more recently?
The below graph shows Wix’ usage from March 2020 to March 2021. It’s usage saw ups and downs across the period. It saw an upward shift in the second half of 2020, and this has levelled out in the beginning months of 2021.
Looking at the same graph for WordPress, we can see that its usage journey from March 2020 to March 2021 was much more straightforward. While Wix has seen ebbs and flows from month to month, WordPress has only seen an upward lift in usage across the period.
WordPress or Wix – Which Comes Out on Top?
Both WordPress and Wix have seen growth over the years. The scale of this growth, however, is vastly different. In that respect – WordPress really comes out on top.
Both tools offer something for those looking to build their own website – but WordPress provides you with the freedom and flexibility to create exactly what you want. It’s always a solid choice.
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