8 interesting stats you didn't know about Chrome Web Store

Chrome extension stats

Google Chrome is the world's most popular web browser, and Chrome Web Store offers variety of different tools that help you become safer, smarter, and more productive with just one click.

You have probably installed an ad blocking Chrome extension, or install Honey to save you some money while shopping, or customize your browser with a theme you like. There is no denying that Chrome extensions have become an important part of our lives, but they can also be very dangerous. Many Chrome extensions have been caught stealing personal data, injecting ads, or replace your search engine, etc.

On the other hands, Chrome extension developers are struggling to become successful in Chrome Web Store too. Only a small handful of developers are able to create wildly used extensions. Most extensions have less than 1000 active users, and >90% of extensions are free.

This is why we built chrome-stats.com - to give users and developers more insights into what is going on in Chrome Web Store. All data are updated daily (there might be one day delay between when the data shows up in Chrome Web Store vs. here). Here are some interesting facts that we have found:

1. Extensions, themes, and apps

There are 196,596 items in Chrome Web Store. Out of those, 147,891 (75.23%) are extensions , 29,300 (14.90%) are theme , 19,405 (9.87%) are applications. What are Chrome applications? They are like a regular websites with extra capabilities. Chrome applications are deprecated, though many existing ones can still be found and installed from the Web Store.

Break down by type
Number of extensions in each type
Extension 147,891
Theme 29,300
Application 19,405

2, Publishers

There are 113,538 publishers who have published to Chrome Web Store. 83.34% has published only 1 extension. However, there are 7 publishers who have published 1000+ Chrome extensions. Interestingly, these publishers publish only themes!

# of extensions
Number of extensions by a publisher

3, Active user count

86.44% of all Chrome extensions have less than 1000 active users. Only 285 Chrome extensions have 1M+ active users.

Similar stats can be seen at the author level (looking at the sum of all active users across all extensions owned by a publisher). 82.95% of all authors have less than 1000 active users. Only 285 authors have 1M+ cumulative active users.

Break down by # of active users
Number of active users in an extension
Cumulative # of active users
Sum of active users for all extensions by a publisher

4, Ratings

41.48% of all Chrome extensions have 0-stars ratings, while 25.47% of all Chrome extensions have 5-stars ratings. Looking at the average ratings for a publisher, we again see a lot of 0 and 5 stars ratings: 35.07% of all authors have 0-stars ratings, while 28.61% of all authors have 5-stars ratings.

Based on these, we speculate that most extensions are not even rated by the authors themselves, or are only rated by the author and their friends.

Break down by ratings
Number of extensions with the given ratings
0 stars 81,555
1-1.99 stars 4,757
2-2.99 stars 5,869
3-3.99 stars 17,748
4-4.99 stars 36,593
5 stars 50,074
Author's average ratings
Average ratings across all extensions by a publisher
0 stars 39,823
1-1.99 stars 2,532
2-2.99 stars 3,619
3-3.99 stars 11,747
4-4.99 stars 23,336
5 stars 32,481

5, Categories

Although the developer may select a primary category for their Chrome extension, Google Chrome Web Store may automatically tag it under more categories. As a result, each extension may appear in one or more categories below. The most popular Chrome extension category is Productivity, capturing 24.50% of all Chrome extensions. The Fun category takes second place, with 15.50% of all Chrome extensions.

Break down by categories
Number of extensions in each category. (Note that an extension may belong to more than one category)
Productivity 48,171
Fun 30,470
Photos 14,778
Web Development 14,082
Communication 13,010
Accessibility 11,446
Shopping 7,495
Search Tools 7,205
Games 5,272
News 3,537
Others 34,259

6, Pricings

Chrome Web Store is dominated by free Chrome extensions - 91.38% are free. Within the paid extensions, about half support a subscription model (pay monthly / annually), while the other half requires a one-time fixed payments. In-App payment make up a small percentage (only 0.42% of all extensions), but they are able to attract more users than their paid / subscription counter-part.

Break down by pricing model
Number of extensions with the given pricing model

7, Last updated time

Believe it or not, 52.03% of all Chrome extensions have not been updated in the past 2 years. In the past 30 days, 4.26% of extensions have been updated.

Break down by last updated time
Number of extensions last updated in the given time frame

8, Permissions

Chrome extensions are powerful because they have additional permissions to perform operations that a regular website cannot. However, some permission requests may look suspicious. Here are the breakdown of common permissions requested by Chrome extensions.