We all know that WordPress is popular among bloggers, and Movable Type as well. But HOW popular? And what other platforms are being used? To find out, we went through the Technorati top 100 blogs and investigated what blog platforms they are using. It turned out to be a highly interesting survey with plenty of surprises along the way.
As a by-product we also found out some interesting things about the more popular blog networks. For example, did you know that Weblogs, Inc. and Gawker Media together have 22 of the top 100 blogs?
When you read this article, you might want to keep in mind that we have chosen to make a distinction between blogging services and self-hosted blog software.
- By blogging services we mean services like Typepad, WordPress.com and Blogger, where a third-party service is handling the blog software and hosting for you.
- By blog software we mean the software you use when you set up and host the platform yourself (using WordPress, Movable Type, etc).
Now let’s get on to the data.
Overall blog platform statistics – the lowdown
Before we dive into details further down, here is a diagram so you can get a quick overview of which blog platforms (and CMS) are the most popular among the top 100 blogs.
(You can find a list of all the blogs and their blog platforms (or CMS) at the bottom of the article.)
Blog software (self-hosted)
We found that WordPress is the most-used platform among self-hosted blogs, which perhaps isn’t a huge surprise. It has more than twice as many blogs in the top 100 as Movable Type, the blog platform that came in second place.
- WordPress is used by 27 blogs in the top 100.
- Movable Type is used by 12 blogs in the top 100.
- Only 8 of the top 100 blogs use a custom-made blog platform.
- Drupal is the only general-purpose CMS with any presence worth mentioning, with 4 blogs in the top 100.
An interesting side note is that very few WordPress blogs in the top 100 have updated to WP 2.7 so far.
Though WordPress is more popular among the self-hosted blogs than Movable Type, the situation is reversed when it comes to the blogging services based on these blog platforms. Typepad (based on Movable Type) is more popular than WordPress.com (based on WordPress). Blogger comes in at third place.
That’s at least if you count the commonly available blogging services. If you also count the AOL-owned Blogsmith that is used by Weblogs, Inc., that ends up having almost as many blogs in the top 100 as Typepad, leaving WordPress.com and Blogger in a distant third and fourth place.
Traditional media like Entertainment Weekly, CNN and Wired often use blogging services for their blogs, and most seem to have chosen Typepad.
- More than one third of the top 100 blogs use a blogging service.
- Typepad is used by 16 blogs in the top 100.
- Blogsmith is used by 14 blogs in the top 100.
- WordPress.com is used by 5 blogs in the top 100.
- Blogger is used by 3 blogs in the top 100. (Including, of course, The Official Google Blog.)
WordPress and Movable Type as a whole
If you combine the hosted and self-hosted versions of WordPress and Movable Type (i.e. include WordPress.com and Typepad as well), they dominate, claiming 60 of the top 100 blogs.
- WordPress + WordPress.com have 32 of the top 100 blogs
- Movable Type + Typepad have 28 of the top 100 blogs.
Something we noticed while going through the top 100 blog list at Technorati is that two big blog networks have taken a large chunk of the top 100 blogs. In addition to these, Wired has created a small blog empire of its own.
- AOL-owned Weblogs, Inc. has 14 blogs in the top 100. All use Blogsmith as a blog platform.
- Gawker Media has 8 blogs in the top 100. Gawker Media uses its own, custom-made blog platform for its blogs.
- Wired’s blogs are plentiful as well. There are 9 Wired blogs in the top 100, all using Typepad.
The top 100 blogs and their blog platforms
We have sorted the list by blog platform, largest first.
|Blog name||Technorati rank||Platform|
|Global Voices Online||95||WordPress|
|The Caucus Blog – NYTimes||22||WordPress|
|Bits Blog – NYTimes||51||WordPress|
|Freakonomics – NYTimes||70||WordPress|
|Washington Wire – WSJ||38||WordPress|
|Daily Blog Tips||63||WordPress|
|Roy Tanck’s weblog||20||WordPress|
|The Daily Dish||21||Typepad|
|Threat Level – Wired Blogs||24||Typepad|
|Gadget Lab – Wired Blogs||26||Typepad|
|Wired Science – Wired Blogs||31||Typepad|
|The Pioneer Woman||32||Typepad|
|Listening Post -Wired Blogs||52||Typepad|
|The Underwire – Wired Blogs||57||Typepad|
|Epicenter – Wired Blogs||60||Typepad|
|Danger Room – Wired Blogs||61||Typepad|
|Geekdad – Wired Blogs||71||Typepad|
|How to Change the World||73||Typepad|
|Game | Life – Wired Blogs||93||Typepad|
|Power Line Blog||96||Movable Type|
|Huffington Post||1||Movable Type|
|Talking Points Memo||35||Movable Type|
|Beppe Grillo’s Blog||74||Movable Type|
|Boing Boing||5||Movable Type|
|Gizmodo||3||Gawker Media platform|
|Lifehacker||6||Gawker Media platform|
|Gawker||12||Gawker Media platform|
|Kotaku||34||Gawker Media platform|
|Consumerist||50||Gawker Media platform|
|Valleywag||67||Gawker Media platform|
|Defamer||87||Gawker Media platform|
|Deadspin||88||Gawker Media platform|
|The Corner on NRO||44||Custom|
|A List Apart||83||Custom|
|Ben Smith’s Blog||41||Custom|
|I Can Has Cheezburger?||13||WordPress.com|
|CNN Political Ticker||17||WordPress.com|
|Swampland – TIME||90||WordPress.com|
|Crooks and Liars||64||Drupal|
|The Official Google Blog||7||Blogger|
|Glenn Greenwald – Salon.com||68||Bricolage|
Gathering this data wasn’t entirely trivial. In many cases you can see directly from the HTML source what blog platform or CMS is being used, and in the cases that won’t work there’s always Google, but sometimes we ended up having to email the site owner for information. We hope you found the resulting collection of data interesting.
It’s always nice to get some actual facts and figures, isn’t it? Now we know for sure what the current situation is for the various blogging platforms, at least among the largest blogs.
We are sure there are plenty of ways to analyze this information that we haven’t thought of. Please feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments.
And what is your favorite CMS or blog platform? We use WordPress for Royal Pingdom.