Wordpress

Why Should You Convert Your HTML Website Into a WordPress Theme

Ankita Tanti
Ankita Tanti
Sr. WordPress Developer
24th August 2021 7 mins read

Still using archaic HTML websites? It’s time you convert your HTML website to a WordPress website and benefit from the plethora of features offered by this popular content management system. We will be focusing on why you should switch to WordPress and how you can achieve that.

Introduction

Pure vanilla HTML has been the golden standard for website development for a long time. However, the websites of yesteryears were skeletal, with no elaborate bells & whistles, and using HTML for those sites made sense back then. 

With the current market trends and needs, you can now convert HTML to WordPress and leverage the Content Management System to run your website, instead of you writing the code. Read more to have a broader understanding of WordPress Development.

reasons-to-convert-html-websites-to-wordpress

Reasons to Upload or Convert HTML Websites to WordPress

These are some of the top reasons why moving from a static HTML website to a WordPress website is an ideal step:

  1. WordPress is a fantastic tool for creating and curating one-of-a-kind user interfaces that aren’t easily possible with static HTML templates for website designs.
  2. WordPress has a strong community of developers who can assist you with your site and guide newcomers’ past challenges. 
  3. If you are looking to customise the layout quickly, the same cannot be achieved with plain HTML layout. WordPress’ Page builder facilities allows the user to customise the layout & look and feel of the website on the go.
  4. In case you do not want to use your existing HTML files, you can choose from thousands of themes available. There are very strong chances you might find a theme that is very similar to your HTML look and feel. That way you save cost and effort to convert your existing HTML layout to WordPress and leverage on ready made templates
  5. WordPress has evolved over the period and during the evolution the WordPress community has made sure that it’s SEO friendly. It has some amazing SEO boosting plugins, one such plugin is YOAST SEO, the gold standard for SEO management in WordPress. It aids in achieving greater search engine rankings, which is the ultimate goal of constructing business websites.
ways-to-convert-html-websites-to-wordpress

Different Ways To Convert HTML Websites To WordPress

After discussing why it’s advisable to convert HTML to WordPress, we’ll dive in to understand how to accomplish that.

There are three options available

  • Manual method, which requires constructing it all from the ground up. 
  • The child-theme method comprises using a basic WordPress theme and customizing it to your specifications. 
  • The plugin technique.

The method you choose depends on your coding knowledge, the amount of time you intend to devote to this project, and your preferences.  

steps-to-convert-html-websites-to-wordpress-using-manual-method

Manual Conversion of HTML Website to WordPress 

The HTML code of your present site can be a reference point for manual conversion. Experts advise that you have sufficient coding knowledge before attempting this translation procedure. You should be familiar with HTML, CSS, and PHP in particular.

Here’s how to convert HTML to WordPress manually:

Step 1: Create a new theme folder

Create a new file on your PC to store your theme files. You are free to name this category anything you choose (it will act as the attribute’s name). Make the appropriate files and keep them open in your preferred coding editor:

  1. Style.css
  2. Index.php
  3. Header.php
  4. Sidebar.php

Step 2: Copy CSS code to the new stylesheet

You can recopy your CSS code once you’ve created the files. Those that want to replicate their site and move it to WordPress will need to locate and extract the CSS code from their previous location. The style.css file is responsible for the site’s appearance. Therefore add the following lines to it:

/*
Theme Name: Replace with your Theme's name
Theme URI: Your Theme's URI
Description: A brief description
Version : 1.0
Author: You
Author URI: Your website address
*/

Step 3: Separate current HTML code

To begin, open the index.html file.

Copy the code from the produced WordPress files and paste it into the following areas:

  1. Header.php — This file contains everything from your HTML code’s introduction to the major content area. You’ll need to copy and paste <?php wp_head();?> just before the </head> section.
  2. Sidebar.php — This is where you’ll insert all of the code from the <aside> section.
  3. Footer.php — This part runs from the bottom of the sidebar to the top of the file. Add a call for <?php wp_footer();?> before ending the bracket with </body>.

Step 4: Change Header.php and Index.php for WordPress

You’ll then modify header.php and index.php to conform to WordPress’s format.

<?php if (have_posts()) : ?>
<?php while have_posts()) : the_post(); ?>
<div id="post-<?php the_ID(); ?>" <?php post_class(); ?>>
<div class="post-header">
<div class="date"X?php the_time( 'My'); ?X/div>
<h2><a href="<?php the permalink(); ?>" rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent link to <?php the_title_attribute(); ?>"X?php
the_title(); ?X/ax/h2>
<div class="author"X?php the_author(); ?></div>
</divx!--end post header-->
<div class="entry clear">
<?php if ( Eunction_exists( 'add_theme_support' ) )
the_post_thumbnail(); ?>
<?php the_content(); ?>
<?php edit_post_link(); ?>
<?php wp_link_pages(); ?X/div>
<!--end entry-->
<div class="post-Footer">
<div class="comments"X?php comments_popup_link( 'Leave a
Comment', '1 Comment', '? Comments! ); ?X/div>
</divX!--end post footer-->
</div><!--end post-->
<?php endwhile; /* rewind or continue if all posts have been fetched */ ?
>
<div class="navigation index">
<div class="alignleft"><?php next_post_link( 'Older Entries'); ?
X/div>
<div class="alignright"X?php previous_posts_link( 'Newer Entries'
); ?></div>
</divx<!--end navigation-->
<?php else : ?>
<?php endif; ?>

To do so, look for a link that looks like this in the <head> section:

<link rel=”stylesheet” href=”style.css”>.

Replace the previous URL with this one:

<link rel=”stylesheet” href=”<?php echo get_template_directory_uri(); ?>/style.css” type=”text/css” media=”all” />

Save and exit the header.php file now.

Open the index.php file in your web browser. It’s supposed to be vacant.

Fill in the blanks exactly as follows:

<?php get_header(); ?>
<?php get_sidebar(); ?>
<?php get_footer(); ?>

Step 5: Download your new theme

When your theme folder is complete, upload it to your website and complete the HTML to WordPress conversion. To do so, go to the place where you downloaded WordPress and add the newly created folder to the / wp-content / theme.

Check the list of attributes in your WP-Admin page, theme, and themes to see if the attribute name exists. If this is the case, you performed everything correctly and can now activate it.

steps-to-convert-html-websites-to-wordpress-using-child-theme-method

Converting HTML Website through a WordPress Child Theme

Step 1: Select a theme

First of all, choose a suitable HTML design theme. Look for a sub-theme that is similar to your current website. If you find the pattern it includes, you won’t be seeking coding as much.

You should supply the starting feature because it gets built on fundamental lines of code.

Step 2: Build a new theme folder

In the same way, you did in the last method, and you’ll create a new folder on your desktop.

The folder should have the same title as the parent style, but with the addition of “-child” at the end. Note that there should be no spaces in the name.

Step 3: Create a new sheet style

Then, within the folder, create a style.css file and add additional lines of code:

Remember that this is just an example. You’ll have to start over with your details. When the process finishes, save the file.

Theme Name: Twenty Nineteen Child
Theme URI: http://example.com/twenty-nineteen-child/
Description: Twenty Nineteen Child Theme
Author: John Doe
Author URI: http://example.com
Template: twentynineteen
Version: 1.0.0
License: GNU General Public License v2 or later
License URI: http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gp1-2.0.html
Tags: light, dark, two-columns, right-sidebar, responsive-layout,
accessibility-ready
Text Domain: twenty-nineteen-child
*/

Step 4: Create a Functions.php

Then, for the child theme, you’ll write a functions.php file and copy the parent styles.

Create a new file called functions.php to accomplish this. Make sure, to begin with, the <?php. tag.

Now type the following code into the box:

function child_theme_enqueue_styles() {
$parent_style = ‘parent-style’;
wp_enqueue_style( $parent_style, get_template_directory_uri() . ‘/style.css’ );
wp_enqueue_style( ‘child-style’,
get_stylesheet_directory_uri() . ‘/style.css’,
array( $parent_style ),
wp_get_theme()->get(‘Version’)
);
}
add_action( ‘wp_enqueue_scripts’, ‘child_theme_enqueue_styles’ );

This code tells WordPress to go over to the parent theme and use the child theme’s styles which are specified there.

Step 5: Activate the subject of the child

Finally, you must configure the theme. Before submitting the folder to WordPress, unzip it using the Appearance menu, Themes, and then “Add New.” From there, you may retrieve the zip file. Look in the wp-content / theme folder as another option.

steps-to-convert-html-websites-to-wordpress-using-plugin-technique

Import your Content from HTML Website into WordPress using a Plugin

Step 1: Set up a new site

Download the WordPress theme of your preference on your new site. Ensure it’s a template you want and can change quickly. To suit your identity, you’ll need to update the look.

Step 2: Install the Plugin

The first step is to download and install the HTML Import 2 plugin. (Are WordPress Plugins safe to use? Read on to know more). The simplest way to do this is to go to Plugins > Add New and type in the plugin’s name in your WordPress Admin Panel. Click Install Now when you locate it on the screen (it may be close to the bottom). When it’s finished, launch it.

Step 3: Upload pages

Publish your pages to the same server as your WordPress installation once the plugin installs.

Information you will have to fill:

  • Directory to Import 
  • Old site URL 
  • Default File 
  • File extensions to include 
  • Directories to exclude 
  • Preserve file names 

After that, navigate to the content tab and configure the HTML element that carries your site’s content.

The second step is to set up a redirection from the old to the new URLs. You won’t lose any existing SEO value this way.

Save your options and then click Import Files after you’ve gone through each tab.

Conclusion

In today’s ever-changing competitive market, having a flexible WordPress website can be the most effective way for your company to develop.

With handy tricks to improve the speed of a WordPress website and ways to scale up your WordPress website for high traffic, WordPress can evolve with your businesses, be it large or small.

Although HTML to WordPress converter plugins may appear to be a viable solution, they cannot compare to the results obtained through human coding, especially when converting an HTML website to a WordPress theme.

Transferring from a static HTML site to a more effective content management system with established capabilities, such as the WordPress platform, is a good option if you have one, especially when compared to other similar platforms like Wix. When you convert HTML to WordPress, it makes your site easier to administer and manage due to WordPress themes and the user-friendly WordPress features. Contact Us for custom WordPress solutions among a plethora of other services and make your ideas a reality with Creole Studios!

Ankita Tanti
Ankita Tanti
Sr. WordPress Developer Team leader for Wordpress & CMS technologies at Creole Studios, and a die-hard believer in the power of open source technologies.

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