September 6, 2019

How WordPress Changed The Internet – 17 Facts About WordPress

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How WordPress Changed The Internet – 17 Facts About WordPress

Posted under: Internet

On the outside, each website we visit on the internet
looks different. Sure, they all share some similarities, but each one is
unique. However, underneath it all, most of the websites we use on a daily
basis have one thing in common: WordPress.

If you’re not a blogger or web developer, it’s quite
possible you’ve never heard of WordPress but if you use the internet, you’ve
certainly interacted with WordPress in one way or another. This is because
WordPress is by far the most popular platform for building and
managing websites in the world
. It’s versatile, easy-to-use, and,
perhaps most importantly, completely free. As a result, bloggers, companies,
schools, and governments all around the world rely on it to power their online
presence.

It should come as no surprise, then, that WordPress has
had a powerful impact on the internet. It has made it easier for people to build
websites, and these websites have made it easier for people to build companies,
publish writing, and connect with others. To see just how much of an impact
WordPress has had on the internet, we’ve compiled 17 of the most interesting
facts about the platform.

Growth in
WordPress Use 2011-2019

WordPress has been getting more and more popular each
year, and it has been blowing the competition out of the water. Check out how
WordPress has been doing compared to other content management systems:

WordPress Usage Growth

[Source]

What is
WordPress?

WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS). All this
means is that it’s a platform that is used for the creation and management of
online content. There are many different types of content management systems,
but what sets WordPress apart is that you can use it without having any real
technical knowledge. There is a slight learning curve, but to use the main
features of WordPress, you don’t need to have any developer experience at all.

Another interesting thing about WordPress is that it’s an
open-source software, meaning no one owns it. Instead, a community of
developers work on it together and release it to the general public for free.
The first version of WordPress was launched in 2003, but there have been
countless updates since.

Currently, WordPress operates as a non-profit organization
under the name WordPress Foundation. The original founder, Matt Mullenweg,
established this foundation to protect the WordPress name and also to protect
its status as open-source software. That WordPress is free to use, does not
generate a profit, yet is used by millions of people around the world is part
of what makes the software so interesting. It’s hard to find something equally
as altruistic in today’s world.

How Has
WordPress Changed the Internet?

It’s hard to underestimate the role of WordPress, but its
main function in the development of the internet has been in making it easier
for people to start a website. In the early days of the internet, to build a
site that was pleasing to look at and that worked was hard work. One needed
some highly-technical skills and a lot of patience, two things most people
don’t have. So, when WordPress came along, it filled a void in the market by
making it ultra-easy for everyday people to launch and build a website.

In this sense, we could argue that WordPress has helped
make the internet the free and open space that it is. The software helped
remove many of the barriers to entry when it came to the internet, allowing
more people to voice their opinion or launch that business they’ve always
wanted to launch.

Today, WordPress continues to grow in popularity, which
means we can expect it to continue to impact the internet as we move forward and
become more digital. However, how the internet will affect WordPress remains an
unanswered question. Up until now, it has managed to retain its free and open
philosophy, but it’s worth wondering if that may someday become too difficult
to maintain. Let’s hope not.

17
Interesting Facts about WordPress

To give you some context on just how big WordPress is in
today’s world, here are some interesting facts about the CMS software that all
but powers the Web.

1. WordPress Dominates the CMS Market

In fact, it isn’t even really much of a competition.

WordPress Market Share

[Source]

There are at least another 20 options in the “Everyone
Else” category and they control less than 25 percent of the market. As a
result, WordPress clearly has a monopoly. Since it is a non-profit foundation,
and also because it is free and so easy to use, not many people seem to mind
the fact that the CMS market is dominated by essentially one entity.

2. There
Are a Million New WordPress Domains Every Six Months

This number is actually from a few years ago, so it’s likely to be even higher
in 2019, which shows just how popular WordPress is when it comes to building a
website. It’s gotten to the point where those interested in launching a website
almost automatically assume they need to have WordPress to do it. Of course,
this isn’t entirely true, but it’s pretty true considering how much control
WordPress has over the CMS market.

3. WordPress is Global

Originally, WordPress was only offered in English, but as
it began to grow, it was offered in more and more languages. Now, full versions of WordPress are available in over 60
languages
. The most common are: English, Chinese, Spanish,
Indonesian. Portuguese, French, German, Russian, Arabic, Japanese, and
Bengali.

There are translated versions available in many more
languages, but they are incomplete. In fact, in 2014, non-English language WordPress downloads surpassed English
downloads,
demonstrating just how quickly WordPress is spreading
around the globe.

In addition to WordPress versions, content is published on
WordPress in more than 120 languages, with the most popular being English,
Spanish, Portuguese, and Indonesian.

4. WordPress Gets 175 Million Unique Visitors Per Month

This stat refers just to the site WordPress.org, not to
the many blogs that use WordPress. On WordPress.org, users can get help by
asking questions in support forums, read tips, download the newest version, and
donate to the WordPress foundation. This level of traffic makes WordPress one
of the more popular sites in the world, and it demonstrates how large the
global WordPress community is.

5. WordPress.com Blogs Receive More than 409 Million Monthly Views

When we look at monthly views on WordPress blogs, we can
see even more the impact WordPress has had on the internet. To give you an idea
of the scale of WordPress traffic, consider that 409 million monthly views is
roughly equivalent to what the site Reddit gets. Currently, Reddit is the 17th
most popular website in the world, according to the Alexa Top Sites
ranking
.

6. A
Blogger Writes a New WordPress Post Every Six Seconds

WordPress blogs can generate this kind of traffic because
WordPress bloggers are active and engaged. This stat comes from WordPress and
it shows how frequently people are posting content to WordPress. The
map found here shows
where this activity is coming from. Zoom in on
your area to see who is posting near you.

7. 34
Percent of the Web Uses WordPress

Just to further drive home how much of a role WordPress
plays in today’s internet, consider that around a third of the web is using the software. At
first glance, this might not seem overwhelmingly impressive, as it means
two-thirds aren’t using the software, but we need to keep in mind that not
every website uses third-party content management systems. Many companies pay
to have their own created, which is why it’s more important to focus on
WordPress’ share of the CMS market. However, that 34 percent of the web is on
WordPress is still impressive.

8. 14 of
the Top 100 Websites in the World Use WordPress

WordPress is not used just by bloggers and small
businesses. Many major companies rely on it for their own
websites. Some examples include the New Yorker, CNN, TED, Disney, Target,
Microsoft, and PlayStation. There are also several large universities, such as
Harvard, the University of Berlin, and the University of Melbourne, among many, many others.

9. WordPress is 100 Percent Free

This may come as one of the most surprising facts about
WordPress considering how popular it is and how valuable it would be if it
generated revenue. The original WordPress founders created the software to make
it easier for people to build websites, not so that they could get rich. They
have been able to maintain this philosophy to the current day, which means the
people who work on WordPress to make it better receive no salary. WordPress
does solicit donations, but these are 100 percent voluntary.

10. WordPress Makes SEO Easier

Here is a great example of how WordPress really has changed
the internet. Search engine optimization (SEO) is a huge part of most companies’ marketing strategy. It’s the process of creating content that performs well in
search engines to drive more traffic.

There are a lot of things that go into determining how
well you do with SEO, but Google executives have pointed to the fact that using
WordPress helps solve 80-90 percent of the crawling issues
Google faces
, meaning using WordPress makes it easier for you to
rank on Google. This is by itself a good reason for anyone looking to build a
successful website to use WordPress over any other CMS.

11. The
Latest Version of WordPress Has Been Downloaded More than 26 Million Times

The latest version, WordPress 5.2, was released on May 7
2019 and has 26 million downloads at the time of writing (the
end of June 2019.) A new version is released roughly every six months, but many
of these updates are designed to fix small bugs or other issues. However, once
every year or so, WordPress releases a much larger update. Interestingly, all
versions of WordPress are named after famous jazz musicians. The first version
was named after Miles Davis, and the latest version is called “Jaco” after Jaco
Pastorius.

12. WordPress.org and WordPress.com Are Different

Here is an example of how the internet has changed
WordPress. Basically, to try and generate some revenue, original WordPress
founder Matt Mullenweg launched the company Automattic, and its principle
entity was WordPress.com. This service offered an all-in-one blogging
experience that included hosting (something WordPress.org doesn’t do) for a
monthly fee. Themes are limited and must be bought, and other features are put
behind paywalls. WordPress.org aims to always be free, and the company
Automattic makes contributions to the WordPress Foundation, but the two are
entirely separate entities.

13. There
Are More Than 55,000 WordPress Plugins

Plugins are software patches that allow you to do more
with WordPress. Some of them analyze your content, others provide extra layers
of security, and some simply let you design better menus and tables. Many
people charge for these, but others are free.

Currently, there
are more than 55,000 plugins you can download
, but this number is
constantly growing. This is a great example of how WordPress has opened up new
opportunities in the world of software and web development.

14. WordPress Is Powered By Less than 1,000 People

Since WordPress is such a massive operation, one might
think it has a massive team behind it making it work. Remember that WordPress
is created by volunteers and offered for free, so the group responsible for
making it is rather small. Right now, there are fewer than 1,000 people working on WordPress.
To give you an idea, Amazon, which gets roughly the same number of page views
per month, has more than half a million employees. Granted, they do very
different things, but it’s kind of incredible to think that such a significant
piece of software is run by such a small group of people.

15. It Took
the Equivalent of 151 Years to Build WordPress

If one person were to work on WordPress by themselves, it would take then 151 years of work to complete
the project. Of course, there were many more people helping to build WordPress,
but it’s fun to think about how much went into the development of this software
so many people use today. And to think they did it for free!

16. WordPress Developers Charge Between $20-$100 Per Hour

Thanks to the ubiquity of WordPress, there is a lot of
demand for people who know how to work it beyond the surface level and build
truly unique and exciting websites. This includes designing custom layouts and
designs beyond what is available via various, and they also help create unique
plugins and other special features for your site. Of course, you can do some
stuff on your own as WordPress is meant to be easy to use but to take things
to the next level, you sometimes need a professional.  Because of this, one can earn a pretty decent living by helping
other people build their WordPress sites. The lower end of the range is
$20/hour, but many WordPress developers make up to $100/hour for their
services.

17. The
WordPress Community is Huge

Lastly, WordPress has helped bring people together all
around the world. In 2017 alone, there were more than 4,000 WordPress meetups
in cities around the world, and there were 128 WordCamps, which are essentially
conventions for people involved in WordPress. This shows how the software is
helping to not only bring people together digitally but also bring them
together physically. How nice.

Conclusion

It’s hard to find a piece of software that is more
influential than WordPress. It’s used by millions of people all around the
world, and because it’s so good, and also because it’s free, it will likely continue
to be the CMS of choice for years to come. But no matter what happens, we can
always be grateful for WordPress for making it easier for us to build websites,
connect with one another, and turn the internet into what it was always meant
to be: a safe space for free speech and uncensored self-expression.

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