As of April 2023, five website builders have released their financial results for 2022. How did they perform? Which website builder saw the most success and how was it achieved? Did the economic situation in 2022 have any impact?
The purpose of this article is to give you a top-level overview of website builder earnings as they’re reported. We’ll continue to refresh the page with the latest data each quarter and update our readers on how these website builders are evolving as time goes on.
Let’s dive into the figures!
Now, for the juicy part. In 2022, the website builder industry achieved an estimated $594 million in the US alone, but how did each builder perform globally last year?
We’ve collected the published reports from five website builders, including our top-performing website builder, Wix, and summarized the key information below:
As you can see from the graphic above, Shopify sits way ahead of the competition with $5.6 billion in total revenue for 2022, with GoDaddy just behind at $4.1 billion. IONOS and Wix sit comfortably together with similar results to each other, while Squarespace lands just below the billion mark with $867 million in total revenue.
However, it’s worth noting that a lot of these builders offer extra services, such as hosting plans, domain name registration, and email marketing tools, in addition to their website builder product which adds a hefty boost to the numbers. This is especially true for GoDaddy and IONOS which both offer hosting packages as well as web builder services.
If any financial reports are published by other website builders, we’ll make sure to add those to this page as well.
To give you the key highlights, here are some of the top data points from Shopify’s financial report:
- Total revenue of $5.6 billion in 2022 – an increase of 21% since 2021
- Gross profit of $2.8 billion in 2022 – an increase of 11% since 2021
- Gross Merchandise Volume increased by 12% to $197.2 billion
In the words of Harley Finkelstein, President of Shopify: “Our platform and solutions enable our merchants to stay ahead of the dynamically changing commerce landscape.” With this in mind, Shopify’s revenue saw impressive growth in 2022 despite difficult hurdles.
- Shopify Review: Learn everything you need to know about Shopify in our full review.
Here are some of the key data points from GoDaddy’s 2022 financial report:
- Total revenue of $4.1 billion in 2022 – up 7.2% since 2021
- Achieved $4.4 billion in total bookings (sale of products to customers)
- EBITDA earnings of $1 billion – up 16% since 2021
- Net income of $352.9 million – an increase of 45.3% since 2021
When looking at these huge numbers, it’s important to remember that GoDaddy offers plenty of additional services beyond its core website builder plans, including web hosting and domain names.
- GoDaddy Review: See if GoDaddy is the perfect website builder for you.
Take a look at the data from IONOS’ 2022 earnings report:
- Total revenue of $1.4 billion – an increase of 17.2% since 2021
- EBITDA earnings of $349.6 million – adjusted EBITDA earnings are down 2.7% since 2021
- Secured an additional 110,000 customers in 2022 – this brings the total to 6 million
IONOS also directly called out energy costs and hikes in marketing expenses as a reason for any drops in numbers since 2021. A lot of effort and investment were put towards raising brand awareness in 2022.
- IONOS Review: We take you through all the key areas, including features and pricing, in our IONOS review.
Here are the highlights from Wix’s financial report:
- Total revenue of $1.39 billion in 2022 – up 9% since 2021
- Creative Subscriptions revenue = $1.04 billion
- Business Solutions revenue = $348.2 million
- Revenue from partners = $348.2 million
- Achieved $1.47 billion in total bookings for 2022
- Secured 96,000 net premium subscriptions in 2022 – putting the total at nearly 6.1 million by the end of 2022
- 10% increase in registered users in 2022 – achieving 243 million users by December 2022
Wix specifically focused on improving its marketing strategy in 2022, targeting higher-intent customers and reducing costs when it comes to acquisition marketing. Ultimately, the shift in strategy paid off for Wix, and the brand continues to grow in strength.
- Wix Review: Wix is our top-rated website builder for a reason. Find out why in our full review.
Take a look at Squarespace’s earnings in its 2022 financial report:
- Total revenue of $867 million in 2022 – an increase of 11% since 2021
- Commerce revenue grew by 17% since 2021 to $269.7 million
- Achieved $906.1 million in total bookings – an 11% increase since 2021
- Net loss of $252.2 million – a higher loss than 2021
- Subscriptions increased to over 4.2 million in 2022 – up 3% since 2021
As Anthony Casalena, the Founder and CEO of Squarespace said: “The enduring strength of our business speaks to the success our customers achieve online and why we’re excited to grow with them in the future.”
Squarespace made great efforts to launch new products and features for its customers in 2022, which we’ll examine in more detail below.
- Squarespace Review: Not only is Squarespace the best value for money, but it’s ideal for creatives. Check out our detailed review for more information.
Now that we’ve examined the key figures from the 2022 financial reports, let’s take a closer look at what these website builders introduced and launched last year.
To kick things off, Shopify launched the bi-annual Shopify Editions, debuting over 100 new products, and it recently released its Winter ‘23 Edition too. The platform also rolled out a number of new features in 2022, including Shop Promise (to display verified expected delivery dates), Shopify Markets, Shopify Tax, and more.
If we look at GoDaddy, the website builder introduced a lot of new features in 2022, including Pay Buttons, the ability to promote your business on social media, sales reports, and enhanced customization tools. GoDaddy also updated the functionality and structure of its Online Appointments feature, as well as its Smart Terminal.
Wix didn’t shy away from rolling out new features in 2022 either. The biggest highlights include Wix’s new editor – giving users greater control to design the website of their dreams – and the improvements made to Wix’s SEO offering. Not only did Wix integrate with Semrush for advanced keyword data, but the platform also introduced a Site Inspection tool and the SEO Learning Hub to help users optimize their pages.
Squarespace tackled 2022 with a similar initiative to Shopify, in that it launched Squarespace Refresh – an announcement revealing 100 new features and product updates. In this, Squarespace unveiled enhanced multilingual tools, an asset library, and custom merch capabilities. But, most impressive, was Squarespace’s launch of its new website editing system, Fluid Engine.
Despite these huge revenue figures that we’ve already mentioned, website builders faced a lot of challenges in 2022. The ongoing economic crisis has forced every website builder to increase its prices, and many have also had to let staff go or downsize teams.
Shopify, for example, saw its stock prices fall dramatically after releasing its 2022 financial report – despite the high earnings for 2022, Shopify’s soft projections for 2023 worried investors. The company dismissed 1,000 employees last summer, and though Shopify has said there are no more layoffs to come, it’s clearly still concerned about the economic climate and customers avoiding non-essential spending.
GoDaddy has faced its own set of hurdles in the form of hackers. Though the disruption doesn’t seem to have cost the company too terribly when it comes to revenue, it’s still a severe blow to brand trust and consumer confidence in the product.
Wix also flagged its concern in regard to the overall challenges facing website builders and made efforts to tackle the situation last year. When speaking about Wix’s 2022 performance, Avishai Abrahami, the Co-founder and CEO of Wix, said: “In the face of a dynamic macroeconomic environment this year , we shifted our focus toward tightening spending and becoming more efficient in the execution of our priorities.”
Unfortunately, Wix was also forced to let staff go, seeing a decrease of 15% in company size since the start of 2022.
If the situation changes or new challenges arise, we’ll make sure to update this section with the latest information.
With each website builder’s financial report for 2022, the platforms also shared their plans for 2023. They generally detail what they hope to deliver to customers and their overall goals for the year.
We’re a quarter of the way through 2023 already, so some strategies are underway. For ease, we’ll break it down builder by builder:
Shopify President Harley Finkelstein said: “In 2023, we will continue to bring innovative modern commerce solutions to the millions of Shopify merchants and their buyers.”
To kick off 2023, Shopify’s pricing has increased across its Basic, Shopify, and Advanced plans; it has introduced Commerce Components for large-scale businesses; and the Winter ‘23 Shopify Editions arrived, sharing details on hundreds of new and upcoming features.
As we’ve already mentioned, Shopify expects slower growth this year due to the challenges listed in the section above. Here are its projections:
- Expected total revenue growth in the high-teen percentages
- Gross margin to be just ahead of Q4 2022 gross margin (46%)
GoDaddy has started 2023 by announcing a restructuring plan in an effort to save roughly $100 million in annual costs. This will be achieved by reducing staff by around 8% – this has already begun – and minimizing operating expenses, as well as integrating functions to save money.
With this strategy in place, GoDaddy is aiming high in 2023:
- Expected total revenue of $4.250-$4.325 billion – an increase of 5% since 2022
GoDaddy will share its first quarter 2023 financial results at the start of May.
IONOS didn’t share much about its 2023 plans in its financial report, but with a suite of products to offer customers and energy put into raising brand awareness in 2022, IONOS predicts a lot of growth this year:
- Expected total revenue of roughly $1.530 billion – an increase of 10% since 2022
Wix’s Co-founder and CEO, Avishai Abrahami, said this of Wix’s outlook: “We enter 2023 with great confidence that we are creating a best-in-class platform that will bring forth innovation and create lasting value for our users and shareholders.”
Unfortunately, Wix has started the year with a round of additional layoffs, losing approximately 6% of its workforce in February 2023.
Despite the challenges of the market, Wix remained our top-rated website builder in our 2023 research, scoring a nearly perfect 4.8 out of 5. The company has described that its focus for 2023 will be to continue providing innovative solutions and products to customers while saving costs across the business.
The platform expects to improve on last year’s figures in 2023:
- Expected total revenue of $1.510-$1.535 billion
Squarespace introduced a ton of new features in 2022, and its outlook for 2023 is bright. Nathan Gooden, CFO of Squarespace, described the company’s performance in the financial report: “2022 was a year of innovation and steady execution across the organization. We enter the new year confident in our financial positioning and the value our platform brings to customers worldwide.”
Take a look at its 2023 plan below:
- Expected total revenue of $955-$970 million – an increase of 10-12% since 2022
- Expected Q1 2023 revenue of $232-$234 million
Shopify scored the biggest earnings in 2022 with $5.6 billion in total revenue. That being said, its stock prices dropped following the release of the financial report due to Shopify’s predicted slow growth for the start of 2023 and the ongoing economic crisis. However, Shopify continues to roll out exciting new features to support online stores.
Squarespace, meanwhile, is at the lower end of the earnings – it’s the only builder that comes in under the $1 billion mark in 2022. Still, it seems to be one of the most confident in terms of its goals for 2023, expecting to see steady growth.
We’ll continue to update this page with 2023 earnings as they come in.