Your website, powered by WordPress

Apr 17, 2008   //   by Stephan Spencer   //   Blogging, Content, Search Engines  //  23 Comments

Remember those old commercials… “This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs.” ? Well, if you do, then just imagine a take-off on the commercial… “This is your website. This is your website on WordPress.” But in this version, imagine the latter is an Olympic weightlifter on steroids. If I hadn’t made the case enough for WordPress as a CMS for regular websites (not just blogs) in this recent post and in this recent case study, then I guess the traffic increases must not have been impressive enough for ya! ;-)

So we decided to start experimenting with WordPress on microsites for clients. The first client guinea pig was Countrywide, and the site was Credit Demystified. I don’t have any Before and After stats to share on this one, because the site was launched under WordPress from the get-go. Once we have a bit of a track record going (the site is less than a month old), I’m hoping that our client will give me permission to share some metrics here. So stay tuned. And in the meantime, check out the site. Any feedback is welcomed!

Here are some of the advantages of a website powered by WordPress:

  1. tag clouds — which provide keyword-rich text link navigation, which link to…
  2. tag pages — which contain excerpts of posts/pages that are related (by the fact they have the same tag in common)
  3. RSS feeds — which help with link building and garner you visibility in the feed/blog search engines like Feedster and Google Blog Search
  4. Technorati tags — to garner visibility on Technorati’s tag pages, thus delivering you Google visitors too by the fact that Technorati tag pages tend to rank really well in Google
  5. keyword-rich, search-friendly URLs — that are spider-friendly and tend to be indexed and ranked better in search engines than the complex, dynamic-looking URLs that are typical of content management systems
  6. content-rich, search-friendly HTML — thanks in part to the presentation layer (usually) being cleanly separated from the content layer, along with semantic mark-up, which gives the search engines good clues as to what copy is important and what is not
  7. visitor participation — through comments, trackbacks, and pingbacks
  8. post-dating of content — to automatically “go live” on a scheduled date
  9. ease of maintenance — with no, or minimal, HTML skills required
  10. extensibility — through plugins (it’s pretty easy to write your own. Heck, I I managed to), sidebar widgets (like the Swicki buzzcloud**), and direct hacks to the open source PHP codebase.
  11. easy handling of “rolling events” — like speaking engagements, news releases etc.
  12. free support — from the very responsive developer and user communities

The first six of the above list are of primary benefit to your site’s SEO.

These were compelling enough reasons that search marketer Alan Rimm-Kaufman is porting his corporate site to WordPress. Good on ya, Alan! Now who else can I count on to make the switch? :-)

So remember, you don’t have to have an actual “blog” to reap the benefits of having a “blog”. I recommend you peruse both or and prove it to yourself.

** Footnote: In case you were wondering what the heck a swicki was, it is a custom search engine, like this one, and a buzzcloud is a tagcloud type thing, but of popular searches rather than tags, that displays on your site along with the Search box, like the one displayed in the right column on my daughter’s Neopets Cheats site.


  • Those are the great features, you have explained about wordpress blog. But what about backing up your wordpress blog? I have heard that it is still not an easy to backup just your blog if it is in wordpress. Is that right?

  • Hey Stephan,

    Thought I’d let you know you should get in touch with your client as the Tag Cloud widget’s background doesn’t repeat-y and it looks terrible! If you convert the Tag Cloud widget’s HTML to include a content background – set repeat-y on the background – and below a bottom background it’ll solve your issue.

    I’m planning to blog the Search Engine Room 2007 you’re attending in March, think we’re allowed to audio/video record the sessions?

  • Hi sanderson,

    It is easy to back it up. Just use the WordPress Database Backup plugin.


  • [...] No es ninguna tontería. Ya se que existen paquetes orientados específicamente a la gestión de contenidos y no a la edición de blogs, pero tras leer este artículo de Stephan Spencer, un especialista en SEO y blogs, la verdad es que tiene bastante sentido plantearse esta plataforma como web corporativa siempre que uno tenga voluntad de alimentarla con cierta frecuencia. Ahi van algunos de sus argumentos: [...]

  • I love wordpress I use it when I feel lazy I don’t have to edit what it does to much to get valid code. I think your doing a great job here with yours installation loks fantastic. I only wish I could get mine looking this good. I will be back to check you out for more info.

  • I’ll second Stephen on the WordPress Database Backup plugin.


  • welcome to wordpress – its a great CMS program to use – I have just recently switched and I find it better than my past 2 CMS programs I used!

  • [...] last year there was a great amount of talk about using WordPress as a CMS. Stephan Spencer has always been an advocate of using WordPress as a [...]

  • WordPress is the way to go for sure. It takes a little while to figure out but once you do it is great.

  • WordPress is great. I have it running my blog and am planning to use it for a video site that I have in mind. What I really like about WordPress is that there are so many available plugins. Most of them free as well.

    I’m still learning a lot about what WordPress can do and how to make it do what I need it to do. I can see the possibilities that WordPress has and I am excited.

  • I would pay thousands for WordPress. That is how valuable it is to me.

  • [...] has a plug-in for WordPress: SEO Title Tag 2.1.2 I’m not certain, but I believe this is the Stephan Spencer article Matt Cutts was referring [...]

  • Jim, we used the Ultimate Tag Warrior plugin.

  • This CMS is so easy to use and being open source you can add any type of monetization you choose to. I’m starting to prefer WP to my conventional web sites. GD.

  • Stephan,

    With the shake up in the mortgage industry, is Countrywide still working this avenue? Has management directive changed since the buyout from BOA?

  • Your right on this one Stephan WordPress can be used for a multitude of reasons. And the Site Admin doesn’t need any hardcore coding experience although it is nice to know a little. Some of the styles don’t fit what your looking for and have to edit CSS and so on. But for the most part having a free CMS that’s constantly up to snuff makes it real nice.

  • I use WordPress for all my blogging. In my opinion it’s a great application, and best of all it’s free. I have to agree that it is very search engine friendly, and there are loads of great plugins you can add for additional features.

    It’s fairly easy to install especially if your web hosting company provides you with a cPanel.

    Another great thing about WordPress is that there is plenty of support out on the Web. I’ve run into technical problems in the past and have remedied them simply by doing a search. There is an abundance of information out there on all aspects of WordPress.

  • Now Joomla and WordPress together would make an incredible CMS open source platform.

  • I used WordPress for a blog and really liked it. However I don’t currently have a blog but may use WP again if I get one.

  • Hi Stephan, that was really helpful. But I see this article is quite old, do you have new SEO techniques? I’ll be following your weblog closely has I’ve just launched my website and am definately in the need for good SEO.

    Keep up the good work! :)

  • WordPress is a good candidate for CMS, just as good as Joomla, if you ask me. However, I wouldn’t use WordPress for a main website, due to security. Secondly, many of the configurations and tags are esoteric to someone who is used to traditional HTML.

  • to Ludogames: here is good SEO plugin for wordpress

  • Awesome, Thank you!

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