How to create a WordPress site that does not look like a WordPress site

WordPress is one of the best things to happen to web publishing enabling people with little coding skills to create fairly complex websites optimized for web searches.  The popularity of WordPress however can be a drawback if you want to create a website that uses WordPress but don’t want it to look like a blog. There are many commercial and free skins available to do just this but I find some of them somewhat limiting.

Here are some of the key things you have to do to disguise WordPress.

  • Create a static home page.
  • Turn off comments.
    • Go to Settings-Discussion and uncheck both Allow link notifications from other blogs and .
  • Change permalinks.
    • Go to Settings-Permalinks and choose Day and name. (Anything but default will work).
  • Remove identifying footers.
    • This step is probably the most difficult. The steps will vary depending on the theme you are using. First backup then copy footer.php or function.php from your theme folder into a text editor (Not word processor). Search for a unique word used in the footer credits and remove it. Sometimes, these are called from a database entry so you might have to dig around. For the Atahualpa theme, I edited function.php and made the following changes.
      • Change:  footer_content .= ‘<br />Powered by <a href=”http://wordpress.org/”>WordPress</a> &amp; the <a href=”http://wordpress.bytesforall.com/” title=”Customizable WordPress themes”>Atahualpa Theme</a> by <a href=”http://www.bytesforall.com/” title=”BFA Webdesign”>BytesForAll</a>. Discuss on our <a href=”http://forum.bytesforall.com/” title=”Atahualpa &amp; WordPress”>WP Forum</a>’;
      • to: footer_content .= ‘<br /></a>’;
  • Redirect some pages to links instead of opening pages. I want to have some links in the menu to go to links rather than opening pages. WordPress themes use pages as menu selections so I need to add a plug in called Pagelink to do just that. It’s simple to install. Just create a blank page and at the bottom enter the url you want the redirect to. You can see it in action as I used it for my Portfolio page.