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2021 Analysis of Top Ecommerce Platforms



2021 Analysis of Top Ecommerce Platforms

HTTPArchive examined the data from over 13 million websites visits to ecommerce sites. The data provided insights into which ecommerce sites are most popular and what kinds of sites use them. While the most surprising revelation is in the category of site performance, the conclusion the authors reach about which is best makes a lot of sense.

Decline And Increase in Ecommerce Sites

The following statistics are based on nearly 14 million sites (both desktop and mobile versions) visited by Chrome users.

The number of ecommerce sites online increased between 2020 and 2021. But the percentage of all sites that are ecommerce actually shrunk by almost 2%, according to the data that was collected.

Percentage Sites Ecommerce

Ecommerce Platforms Increased

The research noted that the number of ecommerce platforms detected increased year over year, by a full 48% (215 platforms versus 145 the previous years).

Nevertheless, WordPress has the overwhelming lead over all other platforms, holding a 30% share of all mobile ecommerce sites through the WooCommerce plugin.

Shopify is in second place with a 14% share, followed by the open source PrestaShop platform with a 5% share of all ecommerce sites.

The following graph shows the percentage of ecommerce sites out of a combined ecommerce and non-ecommerce sites.

Top Ecommerce Platforms

WooCommerce/WordPress ecommerce sites comprise nearly 6% of all sites, Shopify at nearly 3% and PrestaShop at just under 1%.

40% of Top 10 Ecommerce Platforms are Open Source

The research shows that 40% of the top ten ecommerce sites are open source or self-hosted.

  • WooCommerce
  • PrestaShop
  • Magento
  • Shopware.

60% of Top 10 Ecommerce Platforms are SaaS

The remaining 60% are Software as a Service (SaaS) ecommerce platforms.

  • Shopify
  • Wix eCommerce
  • Squarespace Commerce
  • BigCommerce
  • Shopware
  • Loja Integrada

Top Ecommerce Platforms Measured By CrUX Rank

The Chrome User Experience Report (CrUX) this year provided a  popularity rank for websites.

Popularity rank means that websites are tagged as belonging to the top 1 million, to lower than the top 1 million, top 100,000 and the top 10,000 websites, as measured by popularity.

This breakdown yielded interesting analysis that revealed insights about the kinds of sites that use the different ecommerce platforms.

Website Popularity of Top 5 Ecommerce Platforms

WordPress WooCommerce was the most popular platform and many of the sites were among the top million most popular sites.


There were more sites in the top million that used Shopify (as a percentage) than all other platforms.

Magento appears to be popular with enterprise level ecommerce sites, as more of the top 10,000 used Magento than the other platforms.

Wix appears to be the choice of local small business sites for ecommerce. According to the researchers only 164 Wix ecommerce sites appeared in the top 1 million sites by popularity.

Almost all of the Wix ecommerce user based were ranked less than 1 million by popularity. The statistics suggest that the dominant Wix user are small businesses.

Ecommerce Platform For Top 1 Million Sites

WooCommerce was the most popular platform for sites ranked among the top 1 million sites.

WooCommerce was followed by Shopify in second place and Magento in third.

PrestaShop held fourth place while Shopware, BigCommerce, and Salesforce Commerce Cloud held on to the fifth, sixth and seventh places.

Top 100,000 Sites

Magento is popular among the top 100,000 websites, with WooCommerce dropping to fourth place. This reinforces the impression that Magento is a popular ecommerce platform enterprise level ecommerce sites.

The research author observed:

“When we consider the top 100,000 sites by CrUX rank the picture changes quite drastically. Magento is now the most popular ecommerce platform vendor with 1.21% of mobile sites.

Shopify maintains second place (with 0.88%) while Salesforce Commerce Cloud is third (0.63%).

SAP Commerce Cloud rises up the leaderboard to sixth place to show that the enterprise platforms are more competitive in this space.”

Top 10,000 Most Popular Sites

Top Level Enterprise Ecommerce

The top ecommerce platforms dramatically changes for the very top of the enterprise level.

Magento is still among the group but it drops from first place to third place.

Top 5 Enterprise Ecommerce Platforms

  1. SAP Commerce
  2. Salesforce Commerce Cloud
  3. Magento
  4. HCL Commerce (IBM WebSphere Commerce)
  5. Oracle Commerce

The author of the article was not surprised at the results, noting that the top enterprise ecommerce platforms are known for servicing the higher end of the enterprise ecommerce market.

For example, Magento is owned by Adobe, which publishes a number of products that are aimed at the higher end of the enterprise market, so it’s not surprising to see that the brand targets that level.

The author wrote:

“All of these platforms are commonly considered to be well suited to larger enterprises.”

Ecommerce Speed Performance Scores

The Lighthouse page speed performance scores were shockingly low.

Google’s page speed scoring operates on a scale of 1 to 100.

A score of 100 indicates a high level of page speed and a positive user experience. A score of zero essentially represents a dumpster fire.

The average page speed score for ecommerce sites was 22.

The study author speculates that the pressure to add features leads to this level of low performance.

Ecommerce Sites Lighthouse Scores

State of Ecommerce Platforms in 2021

No platform emerged as an overall winner. Each ecommerce platform specialized in servicing a certain level of ecommerce and pretty much stuck to that focus.

WordPress is currently the leader for a range of ecommerce sites but not clearly the platform of choice across categories.

Wix appears to be a favorite of small businesses while other platforms specialized in enterprise level platforms.

The study authors noted that Wix customers were overwhelmingly popular with small businesses.

“No Wix eCommerce sites were identified in the top 100,000. Only 164 on mobile were identified in the top 1 million. Almost the entirety of the Wix eCommerce footprint was on sites ranked lower than 1 million.”

While there is no clear winner, in the realm of page speed everyone, including the ecommerce platforms come up short.

Page speed and the associated user experience is where a platform can excel and pull away from the pack.

But whoever goes for the gold will have to balance page speed with features.


Read the 2021 HTTP Web Almanac Ecommerce Chapter


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The Future of Content Success Is Social



The Future of Content Success Is Social

Here’s a challenge: search “SEO RFP” on Google. Click on the results, and tell me how similar they are.

We did the same thing every other SEO does: We asked, “What words are thematically relevant?” Which themes have my competitors missed?” How can I put them in?” AND “How can I do everything just slightly better than they can?”

Then they do the same, and it becomes a cycle of beating mediocre content with slightly less mediocre content.

When I looked at our high-ranking content, I felt uncomfortable. Yes, it ranked, but it wasn’t overly helpful compared to everything else that ranked.

Ranking isn’t the job to be done; it is just a proxy.

Why would a high-ranking keyword make me feel uncomfortable? Isn’t that the whole freaking job to be done? Not for me. The job to be done is to help educate people, and ranking is a byproduct of doing that well.

I looked at our own content, and I put myself in the seat of a searcher, not an SEO; I looked at the top four rankings and decided that our content felt easy, almost ChatGPT-ish. It was predictable, it was repeatable, and it lacked hot takes and spicy punches.

So, I removed 80% of the content and replaced it with the 38 questions I would ask if I was hiring an SEO. I’m a 25-year SME, and I know what I would be looking for in these turbulent times. I wanted to write the questions that didn’t exist on anything ranking in the top ten. This was a risk, why? Because, semantically, I was going against what Google was likely expecting to see on this topic. This is when Mike King told me about information gain. Google will give you a boost in ranking signals if you bring it new info. Maybe breaking out of the sea of sameness + some social signals could be a key factor in improving rankings on top of doing the traditional SEO work.

What’s worth more?

Ten visits to my SEO RFP post from people to my content via a private procurement WhatsApp group or LinkedIn group?

One hundred people to the same content from search?

I had to make a call, and I was willing to lose rankings (that were getting low traffic but highly valued traffic) to write something that when people read it, they thought enough about it to share it in emails, groups, etc.

SME as the unlock to standout content?

I literally just asked myself, “Wil, what would you ask yourself if you were hiring an SEO company? Then I riffed for 6—8 hours and had tons of chats with ChatGPT. I was asking ChatGPT to get me thinking differently. Things like, “what would create the most value?” I never constrained myself to “what is the search volume,” I started with the riffs.

If I was going to lose my rankings, I had to socially promote it so people knew it existed. That was an unlock, too, if you go this route. It’s work, you are now going to rely on spikes from social, so having a reason to update it and put it back in social is very important.

Most of my “followers” aren’t looking for SEO services as they are digital marketers themselves. So I didn’t expect this post to take off HUGLEY, but given the content, I was shocked at how well it did and how much engagement it got from real actual people.

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7 Things Creators Should Know About Marketing Their Book



7 Things Creators Should Know About Marketing Their Book

Writing a book is a gargantuan task, and reaching the finish line is a feat equal to summiting a mountain.


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Being position-less secures a marketer’s position for a lifetime



Optimove Positionless Marketer Optimove

On March 20, 2024, the Position-less Marketer was introduced on and my keynote address at Optimove’s user conference.

Since that initial announcement, we have introduced the term “Position-less Marketer” to hundreds of leading marketing executives and learned that readers and the audience interpreted it in several ways. This article will document a few of those interpretations and clarify what “position-less” means regarding marketing prowess.

As a reminder, data analytics and AI, integrated marketing platforms, automation and more make the Position-less Marketer possible. Plus, new generative AI tools like ChatGPT, Canna-GPT, Github, Copilot and DALL-E offer human access to powerful new capabilities that generate computer code, images, songs and videos, respectively, with human guidance.

Position-less Marketer does not mean a marketer without a role; quite the opposite

Speaking with a senior-level marketer at a global retailer, their first interpretation may be a marketer without a role/position. This was a first-glance definition from more than 60% of the marketers who first heard the term. But on hearing the story and relating it to “be position-less” in other professions, including music and sports, most understood it as a multidimensional marketer — or, as we noted, realizing your multipotentiality. 

One executive said, phrasing position-less in a way that clarified it for me was “unlocking your multidimensionality.” She said, “I like this phrase immensely.” In reality, the word we used was “multipotentiality,” and the fact that she landed on multidimensionality is correct. As we noted, you can do more than one thing.

The other 40% of marketing executives did think of the “Position-less Marketer” as a marketing professional who is not confined or defined by traditional marketing roles or boundaries. In that sense, they are not focused only on branding or digital marketing; instead, they are versatile and agile enough to adjust to the new conditions created by the tools that new technology has to offer. As a result, the Position-less Marketer should be comfortable working across channels, platforms and strategies, integrating different approaches to achieve marketing goals effectively.

Navigating the spectrum: Balancing specialization and Position-less Marketing

Some of the most in-depth feedback came from data analytic experts from consulting firms and Chief Marketing Officers who took a more holistic view.

Most discussions of the “Position-less Marketer” concept began with a nuanced perspective on the dichotomy between entrepreneurial companies and large enterprises.

They noted that entrepreneurial companies are agile and innovative, but lack scalability and efficiency. Conversely, large enterprises excel at execution but struggle with innovation due to rigid processes.

Drawing parallels, many related this to marketing functionality, with specialists excelling in their domain, but needing a more holistic perspective and Position-less Marketers having a broader understanding but needing deep expertise.

Some argued that neither extreme is ideal and emphasized the importance of balancing specialization and generalization based on the company’s growth stage and competitive landscape.

They highlight the need for leaders to protect processes while fostering innovation, citing Steve Jobs’ approach of creating separate teams to drive innovation within Apple. They stress the significance of breaking down silos and encouraging collaboration across functions, even if it means challenging existing paradigms.

Ultimately, these experts recommended adopting a Position-less Marketing approach as a competitive advantage in today’s landscape, where tight specialization is common. They suggest that by connecting dots across different functions, companies can offer unique value to customers. However, they caution against viewing generalization as an absolute solution, emphasizing the importance of context and competitive positioning.

These marketing leaders advocate for a balanced marketing approach that leverages specialization and generalization to drive innovation and competitive advantage while acknowledging the need to adapt strategies based on industry dynamics and competitive positioning.

Be position-less, but not too position-less — realize your multipotentiality

This supports what was noted in the March 20th article: to be position-less, but not too position-less. When we realize our multipotentiality and multidimensionality, we excel as humans. AI becomes an augmentation.

But just because you can individually execute on all cylinders in marketing and perform data analytics, writing, graphics and more from your desktop does not mean you should.

Learn when being position-less is best for the organization and when it isn’t. Just because you can write copy with ChatGPT does not mean you will write with the same skill and finesse as a professional copywriter. So be position-less, but not too position-less.

Position-less vs. being pigeonholed

At the same time, if you are a manager, do not pigeonhole people. Let them spread their wings using today’s latest AI tools for human augmentation.

For managers, finding the right balance between guiding marketing pros to be position-less and, at other times, holding their position as specialists and bringing in specialists from different marketing disciplines will take a lot of work. We are at the beginning of this new era. However, working toward the right balance is a step forward in a new world where humans and AI work hand-in-hand to optimize marketing teams.

We are at a pivot point for the marketing profession. Those who can be position-less and managers who can optimize teams with flawless position-less execution will secure their position for a lifetime.

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