Search engine optimization often abbreviated as SEO is the key metric that all of the major search engines in the world use in order to present the billions of users the most relevant and highest quality results.
The traffic to your website provided by search engines is gold, as it is cost-free and it is abundant thus offering much better returns than the other traffic sources out there such as paid advertising and social media.
In this article, we are going to be addressing the question of is WordPress better than HTML for SEO.
Content is king
One of the biggest impacts on how highly your website’s pages rank is the content that is featured on those websites.
To rank your website you need quality content that people will be interested in and will help them.
You could lure visitors in by simply having a catch and engaging title, this will admittedly get you clicks to your site but it can actually reduce your SEO ranking if those visitors do not find any value in the content your website has and decide to leave very quickly.
Another metric that is boosted by producing quality content is what is known as the retention rate which measures the number of users that continue to return to your websites over the coming months.
You will not have a lot of return visitors if the content that you are producing for your website is not providing some type of value.
Overtime as search engines recognize the quality of the content fo your website they will start to rank those particular high-quality pages higher than even more popular and authoritative competing websites.
If you are having trouble choosing whether to use the WordPress platform or code your website from scratch using HTML you should first ask yourself what method you are most comfortable with.
For people that lack HTML coding knowledge, which will be the majority of people that have never created a website, it is better to use WordPress which allows them to easier create sites using free and paid for ready-made websites templates known as themes.
You shouldn’t choose an option that you are not very knowledgable about or you are not comfortable currently using as using either option is not going to naturally boost your site’s optimization for Google and other major search engines.
Each option comes with its own negatives and positives however ultimately they can all be overcome so you can properly optimize your site.
Choose a platform where you can produce content
As mentioned before, content is king for SEO ranking. You should choose a platform where you are able to easy produce that type of content your visitors or customers are looking for.
Either if it is easier for you to creat a HTML page or a WordPress page, you still need to produce the content that should rank on the search engines.
WordPress SEO plugins
A potentially useful feature that may sway you towards using WordPress for your website is the SEO plugins that you can use on WordPress.
The most popular ones are YoastSEO and SEMRush both of which have free versions that can be upgraded to unlock extra features.
Me personaly, sometimes I don´t eaven install any SEO plugins on my websites. Why is that you might ask? There is a common misconception that you need to have all of the latest and most expensive SEO WordPress plugins when in reality that is not true.
Such plugins are not some kind of magic bullet that we will tell search engines to rank your websites more prominently in search results.
Instead what search optimization plugins do is that they notify the owner of the website what steps they need to take in order to improve the SEO and also to keep track of certain metrics such as keyword density, internal site links, and the number of words on the page.
It can be very useful but it is not essential and without doing the work required to meet the recommendations that your seo plugin is making.
Speed is another factor to take a look in this is WordPress better than HTML for SEO article.
On average HTML websites tend to be faster than WordPress websites. This is because WordPress websites use PHP which takes a lot more time to load than a website that is made using HTML.
Although a HTML site can also be as slow or even slower than a WordPress site if it also happens to incorporate PHP and CSS.
Google and other major search engines use page speed as one of their ranking factors as the aim of search engines is to provide their users with the best website hosted content possible.
If the loading speed of your site is inhibiting performance and usability than your site will likely be ranked down.
But you do not feature too much on this, your site does not have to be super fast, it is recommended that your site loads within just 3 seconds.
Control over your website
Generally, using WordPress, it is much quicker and easier to create a website by using ready-made website themes and plugins. But a major problem with WordPress is that you can feel a lack of control over your website – if you are an HTML-programmer or web expert. If you are creating a informational website, you will find all neccesary control and settings inside the WordPress platform.
A lot of premium themes are closed off in order to stop people from using them without entering the code they got when purchasing the theme from the developers.
Apart from that, the parts that you can edit in a WordPress site have the potential of leading to fatal errors which we will cover in more detail in a point below. This lack of easy control can make it more difficult for programmers to optimize their site the way that they want to but if you are someone with poor HTML language knowledge and general web design experience then it will be currently more beneficial to stick with WordPress.
If in the future you have time to learn how to make HTML sites then you could always switch over by exporting the databases of the posts, pages, and media into your new site.
Another ranking factor that you need to be aware of if you are not already is that of whether your website is compatible with mobiles and in general smaller screens such as that of tablets and other devices. With small screens, sites will likely not be able to fit properly within the device display.
Search engines track this by first seeing whether you are using a website design or template that is known as responsive meaning that it is coded in such a way that it will automatically fit into the type of screen that the site is being viewed from.
Sites that are not designed in such a way are increasingly deranked with mobile traffic to websites now making up around half of all traffic on the internet according to Statista.
Additionally, your site will lose rankings due to this as mobile users will on average spend less time on your site and are also less likely to return.
Fatal error frequency
The WordPress platform is notorious for its fatal errors, which can occur for a variety of reasons such as a problem with the website’s theme, coding that the website owner has added themselves but the most common factor is plugins.
Plugins are a very common reason for fatal errors because not all plugins are compatible with each other and can instead clash. Such errors are common to arise on WordPress after updates to the theme or plugins so they can go undetected for a few hours or even days.
Keep your list of installed plugins as short as possible on your WordPress site.
While with HTML such fatal errors are less common as sites are much simpler and a lack of plugins being used. This is a key area to keep in mind as the amount of time that your site is down is taking into account by search engines when they are indexing their rankings.
An issue like this can be avoided on WordPress by using a simpler website template and incorporating fewer plugins by only using the ones that you need.
In conclusion, SEO is a topic that may seem very complicated at first with so many different bits and pieces that you need to take into account.
But in reality, not all of those pieces are as important, the most important part is that your content is providing value that will lead to visitors spending a long time on your site and return in the future.
Other factors can be met fairly easily and are not influenced by whether you use WordPress or a HTML website. It is all just personal preference to which option you use and you shouldn’t spend too much of your time worrying about insignificant metrics.
- Discussion about this topic on Quora https://www.quora.com/WordPress-vs-pure-HTML-CSS-websites-%E2%80%93-which-is-better-for-SEO
- Google Web Vitals https://web.dev/vitals/
- Google PageSpeed Insights https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/