How many freelancer developers in the world?
Hello! Thanks for your question about the global market volume of freelance developers. The short version is that 7% of developers are freelance consultants according to StackOverflow. Globally, there are an estimated 1.5 million freelance developers. Below you will find a deep dive of my findings.
METHODOLOGY AND FINDINGS
Evans Data Corporation conducted secondary research to determine the number of developers in the world. The purchasable report includes "the number of developers in each country or region," along with statistics on what programming language and platforms they use. StackOverflow surveyed over 56,000 developers in 173 countries and published results based on geographical location, age, experience, gender, education, and more.
According to Evans Data, there are 21 million developers in the world with a projected volume of 25 million by 2020. StackOverflow estimates 16 million developers use their site every month. Of those surveyed by StackOverflow, more than 65% work full-time jobs and 7.1% were self-identified as freelance contractors. Therefore, there are an estimated 1.5 million freelance developers in the world. (21 million developers * 7.1% = 1.49 = 1.5 million)
INVISION AND BEHANCE
InVision has 2 million users. Behance is a website run by Adobe which allows artists and designers to showcase their work. There is no way of knowing if these are amateur or professional designers, or whether they are freelancers or looking for full-time work. As a side note, most developers are full-stack developers, not designers. Designers only have to know HTML and css while web and software developers need to know at least 4 languages and platforms. If we assume that they are all professionals, then 142,000 would be freelance designers. As you mentioned, Behance has 2 million users, we can estimate that Behance also has about 142,000 freelance designers and artists. (2 million InVision/Behance designers * 7.1% = 142,000). This gives up 380,000 freelance designers between the two sites.
The United States has the highest concentration of developers. The UK, Canada South America, Brazil, Australia, India and Russia are leaders in developer volume. The countries with the most remote workers include Argentina, Mexico and the USA. China, India and Russia have the highest growth rate of developers.
Russia and India have the youngest average age globally. Most developers are 20-35 years old. Over 92% of developers are men. 12% of women are designers. "Women are more likely to be Designers than any other developer type. They are far more likely to be Machine Learning Developers than men. Additionally, women are more likely to be Quality Assurance developers. Men and women appear to be about equally as likely to be either an Executive or Engineering Manager."
Types of developers that may purchase design tools include full-stack, back-end, mobile, desktop, and front-end. 24.8% of those surveyed said their companies have outdated technology. This may be an indicator of the demand for purchasing design tools.
96% of developers work on a team. Most lone wolves are Quality Assurance developers. Most developers work on a team of 10 or less.
12% work remotely full-time. 17% work remotely part-time, and almost 50% almost never work remotely.
To wrap it up, there are 21 million developers in the world with a projected volume of 25 million by 2020. The countries with the strongest growth in developers are India, China and Russia. Most developers are full-stack developers and can code in 5-6 languages and frameworks. Most freelancers work on small teams of less than 10 people. The majority of freelancers have a physical office that is not their home. Front-end, full-stack, back-end and mobile developers would be interested in buying design tools. Thanks for using Wonder! Please let us know if we can help with anything else!