Here at Watchful, we help Joomla users manage over 40,000 sites.

This gives us a lot of insight into what’s going on in the Joomla world. We keep a close eye on Joomla trends and want to share some of them with you. We pulled out data on the most popular Joomla extensions on those 40,000+ sites.

These are not the extensions with the most reviews, the most marketing, or the cutest mascot.

These are the extensions that you – the Watchful user – trust on your Joomla sites.

The 20 most popular extensions

  1. Joomla Content Editor 72.92%
  2. Widgetkit 70.61%
  3. Akeeba Backup 63.63%
  4. Admin Tools 39.65%
  5. RSForm! Pro 25.79%
  6. RSFirewall 15.77%
  7. Cache Cleaner 14.69%
  8. AcyMailing 11.96%
  9. SP Page Builder 11.76%
  10. JSitemap 11.56%
  11. Modules Anywhere 11.40%
  12. K2 11.13%
  13. sh404SEF 10.72%
  14. OSMap 10.35%
  15. BreezingForms 10.02%
  16. AllVideos 9.72%
  17. DJ-ImageSlider 8.71%
  18. JCH Optimize Pro 8.68%
  19. ZOO 8.49%
  20. ChronoForms 8.39%

Joomla Content Editor is our most popular extension in 2019! JCE is installed on nearly 3 out of every 4 Joomla sites! Congrats to Ryan who has worked on the project since 2006 and is now enjoying some hugely-deserved success.

The YooTheme team is in second place with Widgetkit. They are also a long-term success story, producing ground-breaking templates and extensions since 2007. Whenever anyone mentions YooTheme to me, the word “beautiful” is always there.

Nick from Akeeba takes both third and fourth place with Akeeba Backup and Admin Tools. That achievement is even greater when you look at our next list: the top 10 extension providers. Nick’s code is on over 95% of all Watchful websites!

Overall, there are three security and backup plugins in the top six. You’ll also notice three forms extensions and three SEO / sitemap extensions. Those are the most popular Joomla extension niches.

The 10 most popular developers

Here’s a list of the top extension providers. We added up all the recorded extensions for each provider. So whereas Peter from Regular Labs is at #7 on the single extension list, he rises to #4 on this list because he has so many popular extensions.

  1. Akeeba 95.74%
  2. YooTheme 78.24%
  3. Joomla Content Editor 72.92%
  4. Regular Labs 32.00%
  5. RSJoomla 29.65%
  6. Joomlaworks 17.23%
  7. Joomlashack 14.36%
  8. Joomshaper 12.79%
  9. J!Extensions 11.56%
  10. Rocketheme 10.86%

Please note a couple of things:

  • This developer data is a little messier and less accurate than the extension data above. Some developers have so many extensions that’s it’s hard to track them all.
  • This list doesn’t include templates. If it did, a company like Rockettheme would probably be much higher up.

Over to you

Do you see any interesting patterns or success stories in this list?

Is there more data you’d like us to share in future blog posts?

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30 Replies to “The Top 20 Joomla Extensions in 2019”

  1. Cool listings! I guess there are based on your stats, great!

    I’d like to advise PWT SEO as an important extension as well. It’s like Yoast for WP.

    1. Thanks Gosling. My guess is they didn’t make this list for a couple of reasons:
      1. It’s new. The winners have all been around 12+ years.
      2. There’s no free version. This list is dominated by extensions with Free and Pro options.

      1. It would certainly make my life easier (and a little cheaper for them) when their site goes boom and they come to me to fix it.

  2. Very interesting list! For me these top provider have confirmed their professionalism and the quality of their tools over the years. I think they are also popular because they do provide good to excellent support (some more, some less πŸ˜‰ ) but overall very good and reactive. I’m glad I’m using most of them πŸ™‚ )
    I would also join Gosling, PWT SEO (and PWT ACL) is definitely worth looking into it.

    1. Thanks Sebastian. Yes, some these providers have been consistently excellent for 13 to 14 years now: JCE, Akeeba, YooTheme, Rockettheme and more. That’s incredibly admirable.

  3. Great list but I am fairly certain your maths is incorrect for the most popular developers. The only way akeeba would be on 98% of all the sites would be if almost every site with backup does not have admintools as well

    1. Agreed. The second list was much harder to produce and definitely has more leeway in the data. I’ll double-check the Akeeba total number. Akeeba stats are boosted here because we do try to encourage all Watchful users to install and use Akeeba Backup.

  4. This top20 is very, very interesting, both to confirm that the extensions we use are quite popular, and to further investigate those we do not use. But, to continue investigating … now we want the top50;) Any extension of outstanding ecommerce?

    1. I’m not a big YooTheme user myself, but I think it’s a sign of how popular Yootheme is in the Joomla world. Plus, I don’t think it’s dead.

      1. I’ve no doubt on Yootheme popularity but WidgetKit is officially dead since they released Pro. But it shouldn’t be top of Akeeba backup/admin tools. This give me doubt.

            1. Last major release was Oct 2016 and they just provide necessary fix till now. No major release, no feature no vision. Isn’t it called dead product in software industry?

  5. Nice and interesting list.
    Very interesting, the death(?) components…
    K2 example. What do you think?

    Or anyone know recommend the (K2) alternative in Joomla?
    Image generation, attachment file, supported design, supported modules.
    Thanks.

    1. Hi CYberX, my point of view is that K2 is far from dead component. I had several tweets with JoomlaWorks confirming K2 is & will be alive. But it is known that they have their own understanding of the update announcements (specially for their V3 ;). That said, I had a bug lately and a version 2.9.1 “Dev Build” was generated in the week to fix it. Now if you really want to try some other solution, have a look at Seblod. It is really powerful, and you will have almost no limit ! But you have to understand first the way it works.

  6. A thought I have… How much is the top list being influenced by older Joomla! sites. For example, before fields were introduced into the Joomla core, my understanding was the K2 provided those kinds of functionality (only used it once, so not very up on it.) So there could be A LOT of K2 out there that, if redone, might use core fields instead. And, older sites needing that functionality would probably be those that will “stick around” longer with no need to rework things that are working. If this is a valid thought, this weighting could be giving a false picture of today’s most popular and useful extensions. Just my 2 cents.

    1. Thanks Anne. Yes, that’s a very good point. This list is definitely not the same as “What extensions are people choosing now for new sites?”

      1. There’s another consideration also. New sites built by more experienced builders might continue to use K2 while a new site built by a less experienced or new Joomla users might just use core. Interesting, form builders remain some of the most popular extensions despite a form infrastructure in the core. I bet this varies quite a bit based on extension category.

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