This article has been updated on 07 November 2018.
Have you ever wondered how many websites are there around the globe?
In this publication, we have tried to gather all the information one might need about websites.
This post gets regularly updated. Whenever you need to double check the number of websites – revisit this page.
Bookmarking this page is also a great idea.
Okay, let’s dive in.
So, how many websites are there?
websites in the World as of October 2018.
How Many Websites Are There? / Guide to the World of Websites – Outline:
- How many websites are active?
- The reasons for the growth
- How big is the Internet today?
- How much Information is on the Internet?
- What website was the first one?
- Website types
- Number of websites in Google index
- How many websites are mobile friendly?
- Number of webpages
- How many websites are created every day?
- Number of Domain Names
- What is the most visited website in the world?
- Number of websites in the United States
- How many websites are in English?
- WordPress Websites
How many websites are there in the World?
While the exact number of websites keeps changing every second, there are well over 1 billion sites on the world wide web (1,673,535,333 according to Netcraft’s October 2018 Web Server Survey compared to 1,805,260,010 in January 2018).
The milestone of 1 billion websites was reached in September 2014 followed by a bounce back to under 1 billion for one and half year. The total number of websites reached 1 billion again only in March 2016.
Today this number continues to change as you read this article.
Total Number of Websites – Yearly Table
|Year||Total Number of Websites (Active Websites)|
|January 2018||1 805 260 010 (171 648 771)|
|January 2017||1 800 047 111 (172 353 235)|
|January 2016||906 616 188 (170 258 872)|
|January 2015||876 812 666 (177 127 427)|
|January 2014||861 379 152 (180 067 270)|
|January 2013||629 939 191 (186 821 503)|
|January 2012||582 716 657 (182 441 983)|
|January 2011||273 301 445 (101 838 083)|
|January 2010||206 741 990 (83 456 669)|
|January 2009||185 497 213 (71 647 887)|
|January 2008||155 583 825 (68 274 154)|
The total number of websites in the world has been confirmed by NetCraft and was published in its May 2018 Web Server Survey.
However, it worth noting that websites are added and subtracted on a regular basis. So, for a time the number fluctuated above and below the 1 billion mark.
For example, in August 2012 a full 40 million hostnames were removed from only 242 IP addresses. This considerably reduced the number of existing websites for a period of time.
By March 2016, the number of websites no longer went below a billion.
It is amazing to consider the sheer growth of the Internet which started with 1 website in 1991 to over a billion today.
Nowadays the businesses, organizations, and individuals all around the world actively use websites on a daily basis.
How many websites are active?
Websites, as considered by the official count, are those that have unique hostnames.
In other words, they have a specific IP address, use a name server, and have a unique name (domain name) which can be accessed with a browser and found through a search on the web.
However, today roughly more than 85% of all websites are not active. Instead, most of them are parked domains or have a similar function.
This means that only between 10-15% of all the websites in the World are active and being used in some fashion.
Also, consider that a big portion of the websites does not get regular updates. This means that the actual number of active, working sites may be a much smaller fraction. So, the next time someone asks you “How many websites are there?” do not forget to clarify if they mean all websites or only the active websites.
The reasons for the growth
All things considered, the growth of websites has been quite remarkable thanks in large part to a decision on April 30th, 1993 by CERN.
This decision made the world wide web available on a basis that was free of royalties.
In essence, it became a public domain which allowed people around the world to create their own websites.
It is interesting to note that the growth of the internet started in the 1970s and continued on a limited basis until the early 1990s.
However, the world wide web itself is credited to Tim Berners-Lee, who began it in March 1989 and introduced the first server, browser, and editor along with HTTP and HTML.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the WWW in 1989 © CERN
While the growth of the web has been explosive, one of the biggest jumps occurred in 2013 when the number of websites grew by almost a third.
Today, Apache together with nginx currently hosts just over half the websites that exist. However, Microsoft is closing fast and they are expected to get a bigger market share soon.
It is also expected that the number of websites will continue to grow for the foreseeable future.
So, the answer to the question “How many websites are there?” soon will be even more impressive.
How big is the Internet today?
The size, scope, and amount of information on the Internet keep growing all the time. Accordingly, any data on this available today will most likely expire already tomorrow.
The Internet is huge in terms of its size. It contains a massive amount of constantly growing information in different formats (text, images, video, audio etc.).
Millions of people contribute to the size of the Internet every single day.
- Ongoing user interaction (comments, forum posts, social media publications etc.);
- New content publication (blogs, news websites);
- Images and video uploads (YouTube, Instagram etc.);
- and other forms of activity happen 24/7 on the Internet.
> READ ALSO: Video Marketing Statistics – 100+ Surprising Video Marketing Stats, Facts and Trends
As of the latest available statistics, the Internet has roughly 3.58 billion users.
This represents about 51% of the total population of the earth! The continent with the most Internet users is Asia. It accounts for just over 50% of all internet users in the world.
China has more Internet users than any other nation. It is currently estimated at over 1 billion. Just over 25% of all people using the Internet.
That number is more than triple the entire population of the United States!
Here is the wider list of Internet users per country as of 2017 (in millions):
Imagine all these folks non-stop making the Internet even bigger.
Every single second.
However, the Internet does not seem to be that big in physical size.
The physical size of the Internet was calculated in 2015. University of Leicester (UK) students estimated that printing out the entire web on paper would take about 2% of the Amazon rain-forest.
This number might not be too much impressive. But the Internet has grown considerably since then.
How much Information is on the Internet?
The total amount of information on the Internet is not easy to accurately assess.
It grows every second. Moreover, it depends on how you measure the information.
It is estimated that by 2019, given the current rate of growth, the global traffic on the Internet will reach 2 zettabytes or 2 billion-billion bytes for the year.
To put in layman’s terms, a single zettabyte can hold 36,000 hours of HD video.
There is little doubt that the Internet will continue to grow in terms of its size, scope, and information. This is thanks to the world’s growing dependence on the web for communication, business, and entertainment.
What website was the first one?
How many websites are there today? Over a billion! But it all started with a single website.
The first website of the Internet went live on August 6, 1991. It was about the World Wide Web project itself.
As you can see from the screenshot, the contents of the website contained:
- some general information;
- instructions on hypertext;
- and some guidelines on creating a web page.
The first website of the Internet was hosted at CERN on Berners-Lee’s NeXT computer (this computer is still at CERN).
Today we exactly know what the very first website was and how it did look. In 2013 CERN restored the world’s first website on its original address.
As a result, the first website of the internet is still available today at the following URL: http://info.cern.ch/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html
On 30 April 1993 CERN put the World Wide Web software in the public domain. This allowed the web to develop and flourish at an unbelievable pace.
This is what made the Internet to look like we know it today.
How many types of websites are there?
Websites can be classified in types or categories based on several criteria, including but not limited to their technical nature, theme or topic.
However, regardless of the criterion, there is hardly an exhaustive list of website types or categories as such.
Nevertheless, if we consider the essence of the website as an online platform providing some sort of content, we can refer to the neat classification put together by Method & Class that we would like to share in this article.
- Static website (also referred as non-editable brochure website);
- Editable brochure website that gets updated;
- Editable, dynamic website, with user engagement (login areas etc);
- E-commerce site;
- Website based on some sort of web application.
The Internet is the endless universe of websites.
However, every single one among 1 billion+ existing websites most likely falls under one of the five categories mentioned above.
How many websites are there in Google?
Generally, search engines (including Google) focus more on individual webpages and not on websites.
The aim of a search engine is to provide the user with the information that matches his intent as closely as possible. This usually results in individual pages being shown on search engine results pages instead of websites. Therefore, there is no reliable data on the number of websites in Google index.
As for the webpages, according to World Wide Web Size Project, the number of webpages indexed in Google is at least 4.45 billion.
Expectedly, this number is more than the total number of existing websites (around 1.3 billion). As you may know, a single website can include hundreds or even thousands of individual webpages.
How many websites are mobile friendly?
Mobile has become a big deal lately. With each coming year more and more things start to happen on mobile:
- website visits;
- content consumption;
- and so on.
The whole Internet firmly moves towards mobile. In these conditions, shifting towards mobile-friendly design is already a necessity.
Okay, and how many websites are there mobile friendly?
We suppose that currently:
- either the majority of existing websites are already mobile friendly;
- or they are in the process of becoming so.
Particularly, taking into account the availability of responsive design.
However, currently, there are no reliable fresh stats on the exact number of mobile-friendly websites on the Internet.
The most up-to-date information on this matter is provided by Impact with reference to mobiForge. The data states that 82% of Alexa Top 100 sites were mobile friendly as of March 2017.
Nevertheless, this data does not necessarily reflect on the whole Internet. Alexa Top 100 predominantly consists of major websites. These websites possess the necessary resources (both human and technology) to make a quick move to mobile.
However, this is not the case when it comes to the rest of the Internet.
Therefore, we would humbly estimate that the mobile-friendliness of the whole World Wide Web is currently at a significantly lower rate compared to the data provided above.
We also would expect these things to change at a lightning speed during the coming years.
> READ ALSO: Mobile Marketing Statistics
How many webpages are there on the Internet?
Okay, we have answered the question on how many websites are there. But what about the web-pages?
As you already know, the webpage is something different from a website. Web pages are compound parts of websites. Sites usually consist of one or more webpages.
Currently, there is no absolute number of all existing web pages on the Internet. But, there is an estimation.
However, this number keeps changing in real time. Just like everything associated with websites.
While part of web pages get deleted from the Internet on a daily basis, the new portion is being created instead.
However, the trend is that the number of newly created webpages surpasses those that get removed.
How many websites are created every day?
In the absence of any reliable data on this, the best thing we can do here is to come up with the rough estimation.
For the purposes of this section, we have measured the change in the total number of websites worldwide per minute. We found out that every minute the total number of the websites grew approximately by 380.
This means that every 24 hours we get 547200 increase in the total number of websites worldwide!
How many websites are created every minute?
As per our calculations, approximately 380 new websites are created every minute!
However, the actual number of new websites being created every day is probably a little more.
As we know from the previous paragraph, every day some part of web pages vanish from the Internet. Obviously, this applies to websites as well.
Respectively, the number above does not include those new websites that compensate the deleted ones. These websites, therefore, are not reflected in the total growth.
For that reason, the most accurate answer to this question would probably be that every day slightly more than 547200 new websites are created globally.
How many Domain Names are there on the Internet?
A domain name is the URL (Uniform Resource Locator). Or simply the address of a website.
All those millions of individuals, businesses, and organizations own domain names to provide the general public an easy access to their web resources.
There is no precise number of all active domain names out there. This figure is ever increasing (just like the number of websites).
However, we know that approximately 332.4 million registrations of domain names have been made as of the Q4 2017.
No doubt the number has increased since then, but it is 3.1 million (or 0.9 percent) more than in the previous year and 1.7 million (or 0.5 percent) more than Q3 2017.
Most of the growth occurs in the .com and .net top-level domains – approximately 146.4 million domain name registrations.
What is a Top-Level Domain?
You may have noticed that the last segment of the domain name consists of a period and two to three letters.
This section of the domain name is called the domain extension. Or more commonly the top-level domain (TLD).
A domain name usually has two parts: a top-level domain (TLD) and a second-level domain (SLD). For example, in the URL www.millforbusiness.com TLD is .com and SLD is millforbusiness.
TLD is the part of the domain that is right from the dot. SLD is the other part of it that is left from the dot.
There are two main types of TLDs. One that is generic while the other refers to the country.
Typical generic TLDs include .com, .biz, .org, .net, and so on.
A country-specific domain name is usually two letters that refer to a specific country such as .au for Australia. Alternatively, it can be made of two parts like co.uk for the United Kingdom.
There are currently 1,544 TLDs (not associated with a country) in existence today.
Most of them only have a small number of domain name registrants.
However, this total might change on a daily basis. Some TLDs are regularly added while others are retired.
It’s no surprise that most domain names have .com at the end of their registration. The .com dominates domain names with others such as .net and .org ranking well behind. While other TLDs such as .xyz, for example, are making headway, it is .com which is far and away the most popular.
> RELATED: .com or .co.uk – What Top Level Domain to Choose for UK Business?
The latest available numbers for the entire TLD market shows that .com represents nearly 131.9 million. The next closest TLD is .cn (China) at just over 21 million.
In descending order, the remaining TLDs consist of the following;
- .tk (Tokelau) – 19.9 million
- .de (Germany) – 16.3 million
- .net – 14.5 million
- .uk (United Kingdom) – 12.1 million
- .org – 10.3 million
- .info – 6.4 million
- .ru (Russia) – 6.2 million
- .nl (Netherlands) – 5.8 million
What is the most visited website in the world?
Google is currently the most visited website in the world according to Alexa Top 500 Global Sites Rating.
Here is how the Internet map looks based on websites’ relative popularity:
Source: The Internet Map (to visually check how many websites are there in the World)
Google is indisputably number one in many parts of the globe. But not everywhere.
In some countries, this is not the case.
For example, Baidu is the number one website in China. VK and Yandex are the most popular websites in Russia.
For better perspective here is the world map with the most popular website in every country:
Source: Oxford Internet Institute
As it is seen from the map, Google is not the most popular website everywhere in the world. However, on average it is still the number one on a global scale.
How many websites are there in the United States?
It is hard to answer this question. It is hard to do in a straightforward way.
Most of all, because it is not quite clear what we exactly mean when we say “website in the US”.
Depending on the circumstances this can equally be a website:
- Hosted in the US;
- Physically managed from the US;
- Engaged in business in the US;
- Any combination of all three.
So, no clear definition here.
A website is something that can be located in different places. Accordingly, the location might change depending on the specific perspective/criterion.
For instance, is a website hosted in the US, managed from Singapore and exclusively involved in EU market is the website located in the US?
On the other hand, is the website hosted in EU and doing business/being managed in the US is an American website?
If the criterion is hosting then:
- a website is an American in the first scenario;
- and European in the second.
Alternatively, if the criterion is the place of business/management then:
- the website is Singaporean/European in the first case;
- and American in the second.
So, yes, basically this depends.
As an additional information, we can note that the number of hosts in the US was 505,000,000 in 2012.
Today, in 2018 this number is probably a way higher.
In parallel, when we say that a particular website is located somewhere we might also mean the domain name associated with that country.
In a standard case, a local website usually uses the national top-level domain (like co.uk, .ca or .de). Based on this specific criterion there are 109,314,260 websites in the US. This is the number of domains registered by the US registrars as of November 2017 according to Registrar Owl.
Here is how the TLD distribution per country looks on a world map:
Source: RegistrarOwl; Data from November 2017.
- Russian 6.7% 6.7%
- German 5.7% 5.7%
- Japanese 5.1% 5.1%
- Spanish 5.1% 5.1%
- French 4.1% 4.1%
- Others 21.8% 21.8%
However, because the Internet is a super dynamic ever-changing place these proportions keep changing too.
More than that, this constant change happens almost in real time. And not in favor of the English part of the web.
The proportion of websites in English is declining.
Between 1998 and 2005, the total share of websites in English dropped from 75 percent to 45 percent.
Nevertheless, this is not that much surprising. The number of multilingual websites has been on the rise during the last decades. More and more websites introduce the second and third language versions along with the main English version to reach the new audiences. Even more, most of the big and medium size websites go beyond this and add fourth, fifth and more languages to reach an even larger audience.
Accordingly, this downwards trend will most likely remain for English-only websites for the coming years.
How many websites are built on WordPress?
Tons of them.
17 posts go live every second on WordPress!
Every. Single. Second.
Even your local coffee shop probably runs its website on WordPress.
- is fast and easy to set up
- is super flexible
- has a huge user community
- is effective and fairly simple to use
According to BuiltWith, 53% of all websites on the entire internet use WordPress as their content management system. However, this figure goes down when we lift up the criterion and consider:
- top million websites – 50%;
- top 100k websites – 42%;
- and top 10k websites – 38% websites.
Nevertheless, the trend is evident. Wordpress is less popular (relatively) among the world’s top websites compared to smaller websites. However, even 38% share still looks pretty impressive.
Did you know that
- BBC America
and many others all use WordPress?
Overall, WordPress is the fastest growing CMS in the world. Thus, approximately 1200+ new websites are built daily on WordPress among the top 10 million websites on the web (compared to Squarespace’s 256 and Wix’s 211).