## Pages

### Which Stats Package is the Most Popular

I’ve often wondered which stats package is the most popular around the world. As most stats packages are owned by private companies, there is effectively no publically available information to help answer the question. One indirect way to address the issue is to tabulate the number of hits each company’s website gets. Using information from google’s AdPlanner, Compete, and Alexa, I created a table that lists the “popularity” of each stats package’s website. If we can infer website popularity with software popularity, then this information may help answer the question.

As can be seen in the Table below, Mathematica, with 1,100,000 unique visitors per month, may be considered to be the most popular stats package, followed by Matlab and SAS. For whatever reason, data for SPSS is not available via AdPlanner (do they opt out?), so one has to estimate using Compete data, which is based on US visits only. As SPSS is a US company, I suspect ranking it just below Statisca is about right, although the Alexa World Rank suggests it should be just above Stata.
Table 1. Comprehensive Stats Packages and Corresponding Site Popularity Metics
 Package URL AdPlanner Compete Alexa Rank Mathematica wolfram.com 1,100,000 309,073 7,494 SAS sas.com 570,000 112,650 13,705 Matlab mathworks.com 750,000 108,054 9,335 R r-project.org 240,000 45,768 39,347 Statistica statsoft.com 160,000 38,147 85,995 SPSS spss.com n/a 28,289 58,198 Minitab minitab.com 85,000 22,172 146,970 Stata stata.com 92,000 21,716 99,901 JMP jmp.com 39,000 10,797 346,126 Systat systat.com Lack data 2,535 1,100,294 NCSS ncss.com Lack data 1,478 2,309,000

Notes: AdPlanner = Unique worldwide visitors per month; Compete = unique US visitors per month; Alexa Rank = based on a combination of average daily visitors (worldwide) to the site and page views on the site over the past 3 months; all data were obtained on May 20, 2011.
Rounding out the bottom are Systat and NCSS, which are very significantly less popular than the other packages. In some sense, I find this unfortunate, as both of these packages are not that much less useful or useable than their competitors. In some respects, they are on par or even better.
It will be interesting to keep an eye on R, the only freeware package included in the analysis. Will it one day capture the majority of the stats package market? Years ago, I thought it would, but now I seriously doubt it. I suppose that could be a topic for a future blog entry.
≈ Gilles