I had the pleasure to run into water&stone a vendor that focuses on web applications and also on installing and customizing Open Source Content Management Systems (CMS) for clients. A few weeks back, Cody Burke of Basex, suggested - in their TechWatch newsletter - this very approach of using an Open Source CMS with a vendor capable of customizing it to a company's requirements.
At the site, I found The 2008 Open Source CMS Market Share Report, by Ric Shreves, Published by water&stone (www.waterandstone.com). It is licensed for reuse and redistribution.
The purpose of the report was to look at 19 of the most well known of the Open Source Content Management Systems. They attempted to assess these CMSs on the basis of Rate of Adoption and Brand Strength. As they disclose in the report, metrics in the industry are lacking – so the report is very open in its approach, results and any extenuating circumstances, with an end result of attempting to determine the trends and patterns in this marketplace.
Overall, it is a very satisfying report...open in its methodology and replete with necessary footnotes.
The goal of the report as described early on is, "to present a variety of metrics in one easy to access document and thereby help inform our readers about what is happening in this dynamic market."
As a part of the study, they included traditional Open Source web content management (WCM) systems, wikis, and blog-style approaches to publication. The report comments on the blurring of lines between these three types of applications, so they sought to be inclusive. Hosted and commercial solutions are not included (Ektron, Red Dot, as well as Blogger are among those not included).
With no standard metric in the marketplace, the report's author began by brainstorming methods of tracking popularity and adoption, and all cards are on the table on how they did this.
The report segments each area of Rate of Adoption and Brand Strength, looking for Leaders, Movers and Laggards, this is similar to Aberdeen Group research projects that groups their studies into Best-in-Class, Industry Average Middle, and Laggards, they are both easy ways to look at and evaluate the results.
The report admits that there were challenges, such as b2evolution (blogging software that I’m familiar with) which badges many of the pages created by users with their name (effectively skewing results), and MediaWiki, and Open Source Wiki – which is on millions of pages due to its use as the engine for Wikipedia.
Adoption figures looked at Downloads, Installations and Third Party Support…and they list the problematic aspects of each category. But where available (not all applications track this), the total downloads and average weekly download rates were reported. It was not possible to even try to track live installations. For third party support they looked at Developers using the application and Publishers (books written).
Brand strength looked at things such as Search engine visibility, Popularity Metrics, looking for evidence of mind share and evidence of reputation.
For search engine visibility, they actually include the search terms used and rated/ranked accordingly, giving a) clues to their methodology, and b) taking into account a variance in response.
Google Search and Alexa Rankings were employed for Brand
Strength metrics, and the Alexa rankings were done for both February and July
of this year (they checked twice for demo downloads as well to track trends and totals).
Google Trends was also used in the method.
They even used blog mentions to help provide a sense of goodwill, since bloggers do not have to mention these solutions, so they checked Technorati, BlogPulse (from Neilsen) and IceRocket as well as Google’s new Blog Search. They even pulled out the social networks, tracking fan activity by looking at Facebook, MySpace and Google Groups looking for collections of like minded individuals on each.
As a part of the results section (that includes the Leaders, Movers and Laggards), they named the 3 top solutions. I won't get into details, but WordPress and Joomla! far exceed the others in the two categories combined....but the report also lists projects they feel may be at risk due to
declining statistics in the areas that they were looking at, and those Open Source solutions whose window of opportunity may also be closing...Oh yeah, and the systems on the rise and worth watching.
As a part of the results section (that includes the Leaders, Movers and Laggards), they named the 3 top solutions. I won't get into details, but WordPress and Joomla! far exceed the others in the two categories combined....but the report also lists projects they feel may be at risk due to declining statistics in the areas that they were looking at, and those Open Source solutions whose window of opportunity may also be closing...Oh yeah, and the systems on the rise and worth watching.
The report was done by Ric Shreves, one of the founding partners of waters&stone. He writes and speaks on Content Management systems and web applications and has worked with Open Source CMSs since 1999.