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I recently came across this mind-boggling statistic that shows over 39% of the websites on the Internet are powered by WordPress

That’s about 646+ Million websites!

Saying WordPress is the ‘King of Content Management Systems’ is definitely not an overstatement.

But…

Will WordPress be able to keep its title in the future? Or will it bite the dust?

The short answer is, No, WordPress won’t die anytime soon. WordPress is consistently becoming more popular each year by dominating the Content Management System (CMS) market share. The chances of the CMS giant dying in the upcoming years are very slim.

However, there’s still a chance for WordPress’s competitors to grow in a way to bring more features to the table, in a more efficient way. I’ll explain:



WordPress really stands out on the top when it comes to the most popular Content Management Systems out there.

Most Popular Content Management Systems

Below table shows the Usage rate of the top 5 most popular Content Management Systems out there:

CMSUsage
WordPress39.3%
Shopify3.2%
Joomla2.2%
Drupal1.5%
Wix1.5%

As you see, WordPress is up by a huge margin in terms of Usage.

To understand why it’s at the top of it’s game and before analyzing WordPress’s competitors, you should know the reasons why WordPress became so popular in the first place.

Why is WordPress so popular

The prominent reason for WordPress’s popularity is its beginner-friendly interface and ease of use.

With over 50,000+ plugins & 30,000+ themes in their repository, a newbie with no prior coding knowledge can easily customize a website to their heart’s content.

Due to its robust features, many of the top brands like Microsoft.com, Etsy.com, Udemy.com, et cetera use WordPress to power their website.

This is the reason why WordPress is dominating the competition in terms of market share. Below image shows the market share of the Top 5 Content Management Systems at present:

~63%. That sure is impressive!

In fact, their market share has been consistently growing each year and is predicted to keep growing in the future.

Here’s a couple of graphs showing WordPress’s usage growth & market share growth each year:

WordPress Usage Graph
WordPress Market Share Graph

As you can see, WordPress has been growing each year despite what the naysayers may say.


WordPress’s Competition

So, what’s all the fuss about WordPress dying?

Even though WordPress has no real competition at the moment, I doubt it’s going to stay that way in the future. Below are some of the potential competitors that might pose a threat to WordPress’s market dominance in the coming years.

Website Builder based CMS

As I have mentioned before, the primary reason for WordPress’s popularity is its ease of use.

But, this is not the case anymore.

WordPress is now facing real competition from Web builder based Content Management Systems like Wix & Squarespace because of their simplicity and extremely easy-to-use drag & drop builder.

So, WordPress is not the “Most Beginner-Friendly” option anymore.

Even though the above-mentioned Content Management Systems are not as feature-rich as WordPress when it comes to customization and functionality, I bet that’s a trade most of the non-tech-savvy beginners are willing to make in return for the much shorter learning curve.

Static Website Generators

Static websites are the oldest and most basic type of websites.

First of all, What’s a Static Website?

To understand that, you should know what’s a dynamic website.

(Don’t worry, I’ll try to explain in a simple way)

This website you’re reading this article on is a dynamic website.

Why?

Because all the data on this website are stored in a database and whenever you visit a web page, the server finds a bunch of information relating to that web page from the database and puts them together on-the-fly for you to see.

However, in the case of static websites, all the web pages have all their data stored in their own specific HTML page. (There’s no need for a database since all the files and information are stored on the page itself).

To make it clearer, here’s a simple comparison between static and dynamic websites:

StaticDynamic
Developed using client-side technologies like plain & simple HTMLDeveloped using client-side technologies and server-side scripting languages such as PHP, ASP, JSP, or Coldfusion
Easy to develop but requires web development expertise to update the siteHard to develop but Dynamic websites with a content management system (CMS) make it simple for a non-technical person to create and update the content of the site
Very cheap to develop and hostMore expensive to develop and host
A lot faster compared to dynamic sitesComparatively slow
Only shows prebuilt content every time the page is loadedContent is changed & updated regularly

Static Website Generators are not a direct threat to WordPress YET. 

Because they’re still far more complex for a newbie to setup and customize.

But, considering how fast and secure Static websites are, more & more business owners are preferring Static websites to WordPress.

Because believe it or not, security is a huge concern to WordPress users.

In fact, take a look at this graph:

Image credits to w3techs

Notice something interesting?

Even though WordPress has a whole lot of users, most of them are low to medium high traffic websites.

When the traffic gets reallllly high, that’s when the security concerns become prominent.

Drupal is notably much more secure than WordPress. So, naturally Drupal is a better choice for very-high traffic websites.

Here’s a bar graph by Sucuri showing the number of infected websites on the Internet, powered by different popular Content Management Systems (A bit outdated, but you get the point)

Infected Websites

Now, it’s not fair to bash WordPress just because a huge number of websites powered by it are infected.

Because I’m sure that many of these sites were neglected sites that did not have any updates for many years.

And since WordPress is super popular, it makes sense that it’s a desirable target for most hackers.

Considering these security concerns, static websites are a hell of a lot more secure than any Content Management Systems out there which is exactly why it may be a threat to WordPress’s market position in the future.

Powerful Web Development Technologies

I’m sure you have heard of Javascript.

I mean, who doesn’t?

After all, it’s the most popular programming language used as of 2020:

Popular Programming Languages
Image credits to Statista

Note that Javascript is #1 while PHP is #8.

One of the main reasons for this is Javascript’s ubiquity.

Previously Javascript may have been stereotyped as a language for making client-facing features such as interactive menus and animated buttons.

But NodeJS changed that.

NodeJS made Javascript usable as a server-side language. In other words, we can now use Javascript to do things that were previously done only through PHP, Python, and other backend languages.

How handy is that to use the same programming language for both frontend and backend work? Very.

So, since WordPress and most of the other popular Content Management Systems are powered by PHP; NodeJS with the help of Angular and other backend Javascript tools like MongoDB, Express (commonly known as the MEAN Stack) pose a threat to the future of WordPress.


Conclusion

There’s a whole lot of unpredictable factors when it comes to guessing if WordPress will lose its competitive edge to its competition.

Because, WordPress was once the most beginner-friendly CMS out there.

But now, a complete novice may prefer simple drag & drop website builders like Wix or Squarespace to WordPress.

Meanwhile, those who need a fast and secure website may opt for hiring experienced Web Developers to create a custom site for themselves.

This puts WordPress in an awkward position.

But…

Even though there are some Content Management Systems now, which are more beginner-friendly than WordPress, none of those comes close to the features WordPress is offering.

WordPress is still the best CMS for content-oriented websites like blogs.

So, my money’s still on WordPress. WordPress isn’t dying and won’t die anytime soon in the future.