[Note: new data added under Updates section below.]

I’ve decided to share some Excel user survey data in hopes that others find it useful. Trying to find data for the market share of the various versions of Microsoft Office products is hard. Microsoft doesn’t publish it, and the only references I find online are typically in articles about the just-around-the-corner ascendancy of open source alternatives. So I decided to run my own survey. For the past year, a random sample of FlowBreeze users has been polled to determine which version of Microsoft Excel they are using. What the data is:

  • Microsoft Excel versions 2000, 2002 (XP), 2003, and 2007.
  • FlowBreeze trial users.
  • Windows only.
  • Can be extrapolated to Microsoft Office versions, since Excel is typically sold as part of the Office suite.
  • Represents primarily business users.

What the data isn’t:

  • A survey of Microsoft Office vs. other office suits such as OOo or Google Docs. (FlowBreeze is an Excel add-in.)
  • It does not include Microsoft Office Sharepoint.
  • It does not include Mac Office. (FlowBreeze is Windows only.)
  • It is not scientific.

(See notes after the graphs.)

Microsoft Office Version Stats - Graph 1
Microsoft Office Version Stats - Graph 1

The graph below is the same data as above but in a stacked column.

Microsoft Office Version Stats - Graph 1
Microsoft Office Version Stats - Graph 2

I didn’t create a raw data tabulation for publishing, but the following table shows the monthly percentages by version. (The total sample count is 1373 users.)

Microsoft Office Versions - Data Table
Microsoft Office Versions - % Data Table

Notes

  • Total sample count: 1373.
  • It is impossible to say whether the early trending is due to the migration toward Office 2007 or the non-scientific data gathering method.
  • The adoption of Excel 2007 seems to have leveled off. One interpretation of this could be that business users that migrate, tend to migrate early.

Conclusions
The most salient point to me as an Office developer is seen in Graph 2. The user share for Excel 2000 is still roughly 10%. The world of Office development has been moving toward .NET (C# or VB.NET) for some time, but Managed COM Add-ins for Excel 2000 are not officially supported by Microsoft. Even developing Managed COM Add-ins that support Excel 2002 forward can be problematic, raising the hurdle to 20% of the Excel market.

Martin Green did a survey in 2006, showing the market share for Excel 2000, 2002, and 2003 to be 18%, 21%, and 54% respectively. His survey included pre-2000 versions as well as Office Mac, so the numbers don’t correlate exactly. But taking those figures as a rough benchmark versus the data above, it suggests that Office 2007 users leapfrogged from previous versions of Excel more than from Excel 2003.

Updates

This section will contain monthly updates to the data, as time permits.

January 2009 – sample size = 147

  • Excel 2000: 4%
  • Excel 2002: 11%
  • Excel 2003: 54%
  • Excel 2007: 31%

February 2009 – sample size = 157

  • Excel 2000: 4%
  • Excel 2002: 15%
  • Excel 2003: 42%
  • Excel 2007: 39%

7 thoughts on “Microsoft Office Market Share by Version – 2008 Data

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  2. I have just started a new site on ms office. I was wondering that on which version should i focus.According to Jan update it if office 2003 but in feb it is almost even. I think the for next few months the equation will be in favor of office 2003. I shall visit and check the stats for March which i think will on published in April.

    Reply
  3. The functionality of MS Office products is mostly the same throughout the versions. They key difference is with the ribbon interface in Office 2007. So if you are covering generic Office user tips, I wouldn’t focus on any version, per se, but would explain how to access the features via the both ribbon and older menu system.

    Reply
  4. Thanks for sharing that info Nicholas. It’s good to have a real insight (even with the caveats) into the distribution of the Offices, and re-affirms my view that I should target 2003 and 2007 as the main platforms.

    Cheers.

    Reply
  5. Hi Nick, I’ve been tracking the same thing for Energy Lens. Here are my stats for March 2009, based on a sample of 117:

    Excel 97: 0% (woohoo!)
    Excel 2000: 8%
    Excel 2002: 9%
    Excel 2003: 36%
    Excel 2007: 47%

    Reply
  6. Pingback: In the Flow » Microsoft Excel User Data - 2009

  7. Pingback: Things Every New Excel Developer Should Know « In the Flow

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