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Top 15 startups built using PHP development

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PHP is known for being able to provide different capabilities suitable for a variety of purposes and can quickly solve many performance issues. Therefore, even 20 years after its first release, PHP powers some of the most frequently visited websites.

From the business perspective, PHP development services became a significant part of the web development market due to their cost effectiveness and speed of development, which can quickly satisfy the rapidly growing demand for building reliable web projects.

PHP technology is at the core of every successful business, or practically at every one. Don’t believe us? Below, we will list the most influential web services every avid Internet user has heard about. So, get comfortable to take a closer look at our list.




First things first, still. PHP is a general-purpose programming language developed to suit the back-end (i.e., server-side) web development needs. PHP code can be embedded directly in the HTML code of the application.

Since its appearance in 1995, PHP has been one of the most popular programming languages among developers and is constantly being upgraded and improved. There have been seven significant versions of the language, with PHP 7 being the latest one at the moment of writing.

Almost 35.5 million websites are currently running that are built using PHP, which allows it to beat its competitors easily (ASP.NET is used for 24 million websites, Ruby on Rails – for less than a million).

Why has it gained such popularity among developers? PHP development services ensure easily manageable coding, delivering quality outputs fast and cost-efficiently, an array of features, and a wide selection of remarkable PHP frameworks for developers – these are just some of the reasons why PHP is so often used in today’s web development era. Besides, the Laravel framework, Symfony 2, CakePHP, CodeIgniter, and Phalcon contribute to PHP’s popularity.

PHP is especially popular among startups since it’s free to use and can cater to various needs – and this is the combination suits beginning entrepreneurs the most during web app development.

It should be added that there’s also a pretty solid PHP development community, so finding the right PHP solution won’t be a problem for you, no matter which PHP project you are involved in. After all, PHP is an open-source software development solution supported by developers voluntarily – and it wouldn’t have survived for so long if it weren’t for such a vibrant community.


  1. Facebook  Yes, the most famous social media web application,
    was developed primarily using PHP. According to SimilarWeb, Facebook is visited more than 22 billion times monthly. So, it has to deal with enormous traffic volumes – and PHP helps the website with this. Of course, this pioneering social network app uses other latest technologies (like React, GraphQL, and Memcached, to name a few) – but still, PHP is at its core. Indeed, at the very beginning, the entire Facebook application code was written in PHP by Zuckerberg and Moskowitz. The front-end is developed using XHP, and HipHop is used for the runtime software development. Interestingly, HipHop was built by Facebook for the web application’s needs and went open-source in 2013. 
  2. Yahoo, One of the leading world search engines, is run utilizing PHP and a combination of other technologies (like Apache and JavaScript). Interestingly, the company was launched in 1995, the same year PHP was released. Nowadays, this website is visited more than 4.57 billion times every month, according to SimilarWeb. Apart from the search engine app itself, Yahoo provides a variety of services powered by PHP to a certain extent (Yahoo Mail, Yahoo News, etc.).
  3. Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia, is developed and edited by volunteers worldwide and hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation. We wouldn’t be surprised if it’s difficult for you to imagine the Internet without this website – or think of any Internet user who hasn’t read anything on this open-source web platform at least once. This socially significant open-source app brilliantly runs on PHP.
  4. WordPress is one of the most commonly used free content management systems. It can offer its users thousands of themes and plugins. Undoubtedly, the website is among today’s most popular web publishing companies, offering almost endless capabilities for 60+ million websites currently using it. PHP and MySQL are two core technologies used during web development to make this a reality. Web developers and agencies that provide PHP development services like WordPress for their flexibility and ease of use. Many websites take advantage of WordPress due to its wide range of features, such as drag & drop editors, media library, and a plethora of plugins available for download.
  5. Flickr  Flickr is one of the most famous photos sharing websites currently available, and it is believed to be the best source to find inspiration. Indeed, the web platform has become a boom right after its launch, and millions of people visit it today. By the way, this PHP-powered web app hosts more than 6 billion images and handles more than 3.5 million images being uploaded to the platform every day. Besides PHP, Flickr developers included Java and JavaScript in the development technology stack, among others.
  6. BLABLACAR  This famous social project was founded in France in 2006. It is more than just a carpool web platform – it is a community-focused web application. Today, BlaBlaCar provides services to 60+ million active users from 22 countries where BlaBlaCar is currently available. Symfony2, a feature-packed PHP framework, powers this robust web app.
  7. Spotify is a world-renowned music streaming service company loved by 191+ million users in dozens of countries. This freemium web platform allows you to access millions of songs instantly. Can you imagine the traffic volumes it has to deal with? Fortunately, it has a robust technology stack to do so. Similarly to the previous web app on our list, this one also runs on a PHP framework – Symfony2.
  8. MailChimp  Being the top-rated email marketing app, MailChimp had to be powered by PHP. This trustworthy website comes with a wide selection of features. It can automate sending bulk emails, from creating letters filling in email addresses, and gathering statistical data. Just for the record, the website sends around a billion letters daily. Currently, the company has millions of customers all around the world.
  9. Tumblr is a web platform where anyone can start their microblog. It is visited 537 million times monthly, and the web app hosts 450+ million blogs. Needless to say, the load the project deals with daily is vast. PHP used during web development helps it do this quite successfully. In fact, the project runs on the latest PHP 7 to ensure the highest performance.
  10. Baidu It’s not a big issue if you haven’t heard about Baidu before. However, according to Alexa’s rating, it is the fourth most visited website in the world. Baidu is the Chinese answer to Google – it is a search engine that offers maps, an online encyclopedia, image search, cloud storage services, and much more. Using PHP for the backend web development of this website helps the company deal with tremendous traffic volumes, just like in the case of any other website on our list.
  11. iStock is one of the largest stock exchange websites with graphics (photos, illustrations, etc.). Started in 2000 as iStockPhoto, it is now visited 20+ million times monthly (according to SimilarWeb). Furthermore, 500+ thousand new files are uploaded to the website every month. PHP helps iStock remain highly responsive and keeps the project’s UX at the top.
  12. Cracked is one of the good examples of printed outlets adapting to the age of the Internet. The company used to be a humor magazine printed between 1958 and 2007, but now it is a website that brings you entertaining and funny content 24/7. It is visited 15+ million times per month, so PHP comes in handy to handle this traffic volume.
  13. Slack is a messenger primarily used for corporate purposes. The project has to handle 128+ million monthly visits, enabling texting and sharing images and other files, calls, etc. Slack’s main goal is to make collaboration easy and trouble-free, and PHP used during the back-end development helps it achieve it.
  14. Freepic is quite similar to iStock, which we’ve mentioned above. The company is a freemium marketplace where creators can sell their photos, illustrations, templates, etc., or share them for free. It is no coincidence that websites built using PHP have to deal with massive loads of multimedia content – it’s proven helpful in keeping the website’s performance high.
  15. Drupal Last but not least, Drupal has made it onto our list. Drupal itself is a content management system, like WordPress. It is open-source, so the website is always lively because of heated developer discussions and constant news. PHP, in its turn, helps it run smoothly.

Undoubtedly, the list of successful websites built using PHP can go on for quite a long time – but unfortunately, we don’t have all the time in the world. There is one thing you have seen for yourself now – PHP powers some of the most popular websites that deal with substantial performance challenges daily. It proves that its potential is worth your attention.

Fancy seeing your company on the top list? Contact Artelogic, a top web development company in 2022, according to Techreviewer, and our strong PHP developer team will create an excellent PHP-powered product for you.

Do you think we’ve left any honorable mentions off this list demonstrating the incredible opportunities PHP has to offer websites? Feel free to express your thoughts in the comment section below!