WordPress Tip: Integrate WordPress into an Existing Website

I integrated a WordPress blog into another website this weekend. The original site, pictured below, was http://tamarabonet.com.

Original site (built in Dreamweaver)

Original site (built in Dreamweaver)

Here’s the WordPress blog I customized (http://tamarabonet.com/blog) to look identical to the existing site:

Blog (built in WordPress)

WordPres Blog (created to match original)

This is my third blog design in which I ported over an existing html site into a WordPress theme. I’m getting better at it, but it still takes me a full day to do it.

I also recently created a WordPress blog for a voiceover site. The following image shows the original site.

Original Site (Built in Dreamweaver)

Original Site (Built in Dreamweaver)

And here is the WordPress blog I customized to match the original.

WordPress blog to match original site

WordPress blog (created to match original)

As you can see, the WordPress blog looks almost identical to the original site. By far the most difficult part about porting over an HTML site is dealing with tables. People often use tables when they build sites in Dreamweaver. But WordPress doesn’t use tables — it uses div tags to structure the layout.

When I create the WordPress theme, I’ve found I can’t just remove the original site’s tables and have the WordPress theme match the original site in a seamless way. So I leave the tables in.

The only post I’ve written on integrating a WordPress blog into a Dreamweaver-built HTML site is this one: “Seamlessly Integrating a Blog into Your Existing Website.” From it, I’ve had a handful of people contact me.

I would write a tutorial for this process, but it would take me too long, and most people don’t want the hassle of doing it themselves anyway. If you’re thinking about adding a blog that matches your existing website, let me know. I can create a custom blog theme for you.  See my WordPress Consulting page for details.

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By Tom Johnson

I'm a technical writer working for The 41st Parameter in San Jose, California. I'm primarily interested in topics related to technical writing, such as visual communication (video tutorials, illustrations), findability (organization, information architecture), API documentation (code examples, programming), and web publishing (web platforms, interactivity) -- pretty much everything related to technical writing. If you're trying to keep up to date about the field of technical communication, subscribe to my blog either by RSS or by email. To learn more about me, see my About page. You can also contact me if you have questions.

10 thoughts on “WordPress Tip: Integrate WordPress into an Existing Website

  1. Eranda

    Is the process too difficult for a non tech user? I d love to convert few of my existing web sites to wordpress but did not try yet.

  2. Tom

    If you’re comfortable with CSS and understand WordPress template tags and hierarchy, it’s not difficult. However, why not just migrate all your content into an existing WordPress theme? It’s actually easier to do that. For example, Woothemes has some compelling designs that may be better than trying to create a custom theme that matches your original site. However, some people are really in love with their site design, or have built up a brand around it, and want to keep it.

  3. ephra

    Hi,
    this is exactly what I’m looking for. I also use dreamweaver and want to integrate a WP-blog in my existing html-site and not the other way around. Too bad you have no tutorial how to do this! I don’t use tables -only div’s and css.
    Can’t you write a bit more on how to start?
    regards,
    ephra

    1. Lewis

      Hello,

      have you managed to find a solution to intergrating a wordpress blog into an existing html? I’m desperate to find a solution. I also do not want to give my whole site over to wordpress. I’m about to learn some php to see if that helps.

      kind regards,
      Lewis

      1. Tom

        Lewis, there’s no easy way to do it. You have to basically create a wordpress theme that matches your existing site’s design. I offer this as a service. See my contact form to contact me with more details about your site, if you’re interested.

  4. terry @ Online Degrees

    Aarrgghh! What you did with the websites that you showed above is exactly what I am trying to do. Looks like I may have to break down and spring for you or someone else to actually create the blog to mirror my website design. Frustrating that I can’t do this myself.

    1. Tom Johnson

      If you want to hire me to create a wordpress theme for you, let me know. I do usually do this for $300 to $600. It does require knowledge of CSS, PHP, XHTML, and WordPress.

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