Shopping Cart Trends

Posted by Paul on January 15, 2015

It's always good to be aware of industry trends and "Google Trends" is a great tool for this. Assuming that the number of searches on a given topic is a good indicator of interest in it, which it probably is, it's a great tool for seeing how certain technologies/companies/platforms are doing.

So let's take a look at how some of the most popular open source ecommerce platforms compare.

[Update 2016-05-09]
Shopify's rise continues and finally catches up with Magento. WooCommerce also gains in popularity. But as we know from the early days of Internet Explorer - what is popular is not necessarily what is best.


We can see that OpenCart started to really take off around 2009 and increased steadily into 2014, achieving almost 1/2 the searches of Magento in 2013 and about 3/4 of the searches for Prestashop which is pretty impressive considering both of those are substantially bigger companies. Towards the end of 2014 OpenCart tails off a little but I suspect this was due to the OpenCart team going a bit quiet while keeping their heads down for the delivery of the responsive OpenCart 2.0 which we expect to add fuel to the fire.


Interest in Magento soared from late 2007 but levelled off around mid-2009. eBay's 49% purchase of Magento in February 2011 didn't affect interest in Magento much, nor did their 100% acquisition in June 2011. Interest in the platform still remains far almost double that of its nearest competitor.


Interest grows nicely from 2009 until around 2013 where it tends to level-off at just over half that of Magento.


As one of the oldest ecommerce platforms, interest in ZenCart gradually rose until around 2008 when the other carts started springing up. After 2008 as ZenCart couldn't keep up with new features and development of the other platforms, interest waned until now in 2015, interest in the platform is negligible. RIP.


Although not an open source ecommerce platform, it is interesting to compare how Shopify fares. It began to appear in searches around 2009 and interest grows as an exponential curve rather than the other platforms which seem to grow more linearly. However, total volume is still only around that of OpenCart and seems to be levelling off.


The data seems to reflect what we would have imagined - Magento is still the most popular platform with Prestashop and OpenCart not far behind. ZenCart is now forgotten and there is increased interested in the cloud based Shopify platform.

Have we missed a major platform? Why do you think Magento still remains the most popular? Is it a case of better marketing or better product? Let us know in the comments!

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