It used to be that blogs looked like blogs and websites looked like websites. One could easily tell blogs and websites apart.
Then the WordPress CMS came along and changed everything. Now, it’s getting increasingly harder to tell if the site is running on a “blogging” CMS application like the WP CMS, or if it’s been created using web-building software. Not so much in terms of what the sites are being used for, but in terms of web design and also being able to tell what kind of web application is actually powering the site.
(Can You Tell Which Application Is Powering Your Website?)
For website owners, understanding the difference between a Content Management System tool like WordPress and other website-building tools is huge, not so much in terms of the technical differences, but more importantly, in terms of the areas that many website owners care about, such as web development costs, ease of use, ability to maintain the site up-to-date, managing content, etc.
Think about this …
Which of these options would you choose?
A) An eye-catching, professional-looking website that turns out to be fairly expensive to build, or
B) The same eye-catching, professional-looking site, but at a cost that turns out to be significantly less than the cost of getting option “A” above.
If you picked option “B”, then you need to learn more about the benefits of using WordPress, why WordPress can give you an expensive-looking website that will normally cost far less to build than websites built using website-building software … and how to tell these apart!
WordPress is the world’s most popular online publishing platform and content management system (CMS). It is a powerful CMS application suitable for most business needs.
Whether your reason for having a website is for personal blogging or business use, WordPress is easy enough for a novice with no knowledge of web coding to use and manage, yet it offers a range of helpful functions that make your web presence highly effective in terms of getting your content published, promoting visitor interaction, generating business leads and sales, enhancing your site’s capabilities, scalability, etc.
With almost one in every five websites around the world currently being powered by WordPress, chances are that if you already own a website, your site is also driven by WordPress.
And if you don’t have a website yet, or are considering getting one built, then wouldn’t it be great to be able to show your web developer an existing website with the design and layout that you like, know that it was built with WordPress and that you can, therefore, get something similarly built for your business to a smaller budget if required?
Is It A WP Web Site?
Do you need to know if a website uses WordPress? Maybe you’ve come to this page because you’ve heard or read wonderful things about WordPress, and you’re now wondering if your site was built using the WordPress software, or some other website application.
Also, have you ever looked at a competitor’s website and wondered what they’re doing to try and get better results online?
Knowing if your competitor’s site is built with WordPress can tell you a few things about their strategies and methods, such as what themes or plugins they are using.
Here are some simple methods you can use to quickly tell if sites are running on WordPress:
Search The Source Code For TellTale The WordPress Footprint
If you know how to access the source code of a web page (e.g. Firefox Menu > Web Developer > Page Source if using Firefox, or Google Menu > More Tools > View Source if using Google Chrome), you can look for an obvious tell-tale footprint …
(View your web page source code using the Firefox web browser)
Let’s say that you are surfing the web and you come across a site that you like, and you’re wondering if the site was built on WordPress …
First, bring up the site’s source code on your screen, using the methods described above.
In the source code, search for “wp-content” either by visually scanning the code …
Or use the browser’s “Find” function …
(Using Firefox’s ‘Find’ function)
This will quickly tell you if the site runs on WordPress or not.
Note: If you are unable to find “wp-content” within the page source code, it does not mean that you are not looking at a WordPress site.
There are other ways to find out if a site was built using the WordPress software, as we will soon see.
As the focus of this post is to try and help non “techies”, however, below you will find a number of easy methods you can use to check if your web site is built using WordPress other than looking at the source code.
Ask Your Webmaster
While this may seem like the most obvious thing to do, some web developers, for whatever reason, will build their clients a website and not tell them it’s been built with WordPress.
If you paid a website developer or got somebody else to build your website, just ask your developer or whoever built your site if your website was built with WordPress.
That was easy, huh?
Okay … what if you can’t reach the person who looks after your site, or what if you’ve come across a site that you really like while surfing online and you want to know if it was built using WordPress?
Check Below The Footer
If the site uses a WordPress theme and the theme templates have not been modified, you will typically find a “Powered by WordPress” message showing at the bottom of the site …
(Proudly Powered by WordPress)
If these simple methods aren’t helpful to you, here are some other ways of identifying WordPress sites …
Sites That Can Tell You If A Website Uses WordPress
Here are a couple of tools that will tell you if the website uses WordPress or not, and what themes or plugins the site uses …
(Is It WordPress?)
Is It WordPress? is a free online tool that can tell you very quickly if a site uses WordPress or not.
Using this tool is super easy. Just enter the address of the website into the search field and click the button.
The tool will go through the site code and tell you if the site was built using WordPress, and if so, which version of WordPress it is currently using …
If the site was not built using WordPress, you will see a message like the one shown below …
To visit this site, go here:
(WordPress Theme Detector)
WordPress Theme Detector by Satori Studio is a free tool that can help determine whether or not a website uses WordPress as its CMS engine; it will also tell you which theme the site is using and provide a link to the theme’s official page.
To use this tool, paste the URL of a web page (it doesn’t have to be the home page) into the ‘Enter website URL’ field and click on the ‘What WordPress theme is that?’ button …
(Enter website URL and click the button)
The Theme Detector will automatically scan the website and output its theme information …
(WordPress Theme Detector displays theme results)
If a website is built with WordPress but the theme is too customized to contain any traces of its origins, the Detector will still let you know it’s a WP site by outputting a message on the right.
(Modified WordPress theme message)
If the website is not using WordPress at all, the tool will also let you know …
(This website is not WordPress)
You can try the Detector yourself by visiting this link:
(Wappalyzer – Web Browser Add-On (Firefox / Chrome))
If you use a browser such as Firefox or Chrome and would like to be able to see if the sites that you are visiting use WordPress, then Wappalyzer is a great extension to install on your web browser.
Wappalyzer tells you what software is installed in the sites you are visiting.
According to their website …
It’s also a very easy to install and very easy to use browser extension.
Once you have installed Wappalyzer, icons will appear in your browser menu, in the URL field allowing you to see which technologies are being used by all the sites you visit …
If you see the WordPress icon displayed on the browser menu (as the above screen shot shows), then the site has been built with WordPress.
(This site has been built with WordPress!)
Visit the Wappalyzer add-on website here:
(SpyBar – Browser Addon For WordPress)
SpyBar is a browser addon that lets you ‘reverse engineer’ any WordPress site you visit and see which WordPress plugins and themes are being used, right inside your web browser …
(SpyBar – Discover WordPress Plugins And Themes Used By Your Competitors)
SpyBar can be installed as a browser extension on Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox and is compatible with PC and Mac.
To download or learn more about SpyBar, go here:
(Plugin Sniper – Find out what plugins a WordPress site is using)
Plugin Sniper lets you find out what plugins a WordPress site is using. This is a useful tool if you want to know what WordPress plugins are being used by your competitors.
Plugin Sniper is also a useful tool for researching what kinds of plugins businesses in certain niches are using …
(Search WordPress sites by categories and location)
To download or learn more about Plugin Sniper, visit the site below:
We hope you have found this tutorial useful.
"This is an awesome training series. I have a pretty good understanding of WordPress already, but this is helping me to move somewhere from intermediate to advanced user!" - Kim Lednum