WordStat: Ratings of WordPress Plugins

After sharing some interesting details on the usage of WordPress trough time in the previous WordStat, the new WordStat has arrived! And this time, we’re taking a look at…

Plugin ratings!

I’ve done a bit of research, and it turns out that a very big portion of all WordPress reviews is 5-star. Nearly nobody feels like a plugin deserves a 2-star or 3-star review, and apparently leaving a 1-star review it is still a rather popular way of expressing your displeasure at the failure of a plugin doing what you want it to do.

So far, in 2016, approximately 90,000 plugin reviews have been left by WordPress users. Considering the number of WordPress plugins currently in the repository, that’s a little less than 2 reviews per plugin. That’s… kinda disappointing. I’ll take a look at the distribution of the number of reviews some time, but I expect that a very small share of all plugins account for a very large part of all reviews.


The average WordPress plugin has a rating of 4.51, so if your plugin has a rating higher than that, you’re doing okay. If your plugin has a rating lower than that… well, let’s just say you’re plugin is in the 36% of rated plugins with a rating lower than the average.

That’s all for this WordStat!

WordStat: Number of Websites Using WordPress

It’s time to share some cool statistics about WordPress! In this first edition of WordStat: the growth of WordPress usage worlwide. Let me provide you with a teaser: it’s HUGE. Back in 2008, when I started using WordPress, it powered somewhere around 3% of all websites. There was fierce competition going on, and I wasn’t even sure whether I should use WordPress or another CMS. In fact, it would have been regarded a wise decision then if I had chosen Drupal. But I didn’t.

Oh, how times have changed. Currently, WordPress powers 27.1% of the web. It’s still gaining about 3 percentage points of the market each year, which is pretty amazing. See for yourself!


WordPress yearly usage average from 2008 to 2016.

By the way, there’s somewhere in the neighbourhood of 180 million websites online. Which means WordPress powers a staggering 48 million websites!

Data from:
Assorted sources

The New Plugins Overview & How To Add Icons

The new plugins overview page is probably one of the coolest visible new features in WordPress 4.0. In a lightning-fast (for WordPress standards), 7-week sprint, ticket #28785 moved from an idea and a wireframe to a full new implementation for the plugins overview screen in WordPress. The new plugin overview bears quite some resemblance to the new themes overview, and is set to not only feature additional plugin information in a structured way, but plugin icons as well.

Interested as I was in this new plugins screen, I implemented the patch in my local environment. And, for testing the icons, I mocked up and implemented the icons for Admin Columns, as no other plugins featured icons yet. And, I must say, the result was absolutely stunning.


The new overview with “Plugin Cards” in WordPress 4.0 is sweet.

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Approaching recurring content in WordPress themes

The WordPress Twenty Twelve and Twenty Thirteen themes use identical ways to display entries inside the loop. Instead of calling the_title and the_content directly from among others index.php and single.php, they include a file for displaying the entry based on the post format using get_template_part combined with get_post_format.

Using this method, the themes handle the displaying of post entries via a single file (in this case, one file per post format), allowing the developer to easily change the outputted content for entries: instead of changing index.php, single.php, archive.php and all other files where a post entry is outputted, the developer can just change the appropriate template part file for the post format and alter the output on all pages where the template part is used.

So that’s one type of recurring content, and one way to handle it…

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Stop using “page-” as a prefix for your themes page template files

Much has been written already about the WordPress template hierarchy. It’s an important part of WordPress, and understanding it is of vital importance to build proper themes. There’s a Codex entry devoted to it, Wptuts+ has created a cheat sheet for it and many, many articles have been written about its basics.

But, as is the case with many other WordPress topics, an at first sight promising list of results for a search query on the subject turns out to be a list of articles and tutorials that pretty much contain exactly what’s already in the Codex, but in a more readable format. What should be a list of interesting topics about the WordPress template hierarchy, its roots and why it is as it is, is actually the same article over and over again. Continue reading