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10 Ways to Tell if a Website Is Built With WordPress

You can tell if a website is built using WordPress based on their URL, content, and checking for plugins. Check out this list for details about 10 methods of detecting the presence of WordPress.
Updated November 22, 2022

WordPress is a popular content management system (CMS) that is used by millions of people all over the world. It is a favorite among bloggers and small business owners because it is easy to use and customizable. While many people know that WordPress powers millions of websites, they might want to know exactly which sites use WordPress.

Here are 10 ways to tell if a specific website is built in WordPress:

Check the License.txt

The license.txt file is included in every WordPress download. If you view the source code of a website and see a license.txt file, that is a good indication that the site is using WordPress.

To easily see if a website is built on WordPress, add /license.txt to the end of the domain name in your browser. For example:

www.goldpenguin.org/license.txt

If you see a page that opens up and the first line is "WordPress - Web publishing software", that means the site is using WordPress!

Check the readme.html

Similar to the license.txt file, every WordPress download includes a readme.html file. This file contains information about the version of WordPress, how to install it, and other helpful details.

To see if a site is using WordPress, add /readme.html to the end of the domain name in your browser. For example:

www.goldpenguin.org/readme.html

If you see a page that opens up and the title is "Semantic Personal Publishing Platform", that means the site is using WordPress.

Run a WordPress Theme Checker

Several websites allow you to enter a URL and they will tell you what WordPress theme is being used. This can be helpful if you are looking for a specific WordPress theme or want to find out more information about the website.

Some popular WordPress theme checkers include: BuiltWith and WhatWPThemeIsThat

Both of these websites will give you detailed information about the WordPress theme being used as well as other information about the website, such as the hosting provider, analytics tools, and plugins.

Check the Source Code (Look for “wp-content” in the source code)

Every WordPress website has a “wp-content” folder that contains all of the themes, plugins, and other files for the website. If you view the source code of a website and see “wp-content” in the file path, that is a strong indication that the site is using WordPress.

To view the source code of a website, right-click on the page and select “View source” (or “View page source”). A new tab will open up with the HTML code for the website.

If you don’t see “wp-content” in the code, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the site isn’t using WordPress. Some WordPress sites use a security measure called “obfuscation” which hides the “wp-content” folder from view.

wp content checker inspect element for wordpress website

Look for Common WordPress Plugins

While not every WordPress website uses plugins, most do. Plugins are small pieces of software that add additional features or functionality to a WordPress website. There are thousands of plugins available, and new ones are released every day.

If you know which plugins are common among WordPress sites, you can check for those to see if a website is using WordPress. Of course, if you find plugins on a site, you know it's built with WordPress . Some popular WordPress plugins include:

  • Jetpack
  • Yoast SEO
  • WPForms
  • Gravity Forms
  • Contact Form 7

To find out if a website is using a particular plugin, you can view the source code and look for “/wp-content/plugins/” followed by the plugin name. For example, if a site is using the Yoast SEO plugin, you would see “/wp-content/plugins/yoast-seo/” in the source code.

Look for the WordPress Login Page

The WordPress login page is typically located at www.goldpenguin.org/wp-login.php or www.goldpenguin.org/wp-admin. If you see either of these pages when you visit a website, that is a good indication that the site is using WordPress.

Of course, just because you don’t see a login page, that doesn’t mean the site isn’t using WordPress. Some WordPress sites have the login page hidden or removed altogether.

Look for “WordPress” in the footer

If you scroll to the bottom of a WordPress website, you will sometimes see a link in the footer that says “Powered by WordPress” or “Designed with WordPress.” This is another good indicator that the site is using WordPress.

Of course, most WordPress sites have been customized to remove this link from the footer. But if you see it, chances are good that the site is using WordPress.

Ask The Company!

This one is a last resort – if you can't figure out if a site is using WordPress or not, you can always contact the company and ask them. They might be able to tell you if their site is built on WordPress.

Conclusion

At this point, you should have a good idea of whether or not a website is using WordPress. These four methods should help you determine if WordPress is powering a site. Remember, just because a site isn’t using WordPress doesn’t mean it’s not a good website. There are many great website builders and CMSs out there, and WordPress is just one of them.

If you do find out a site is built on WordPress, you know now how to tell! And if you were wondering if you could recreate a certain website theme or design, chances are good that you can – especially if it’s a WordPress site – with a builder like Breakdance or Oxygen. Happy searching!

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Written by Justin Gluska
Justin is the founder of Gold Penguin, a business technology blog that helps people start, grow, and scale their business using AI. The world is changing and he believes it's best to make use of the new technology that is starting to change the world. If it can help you make more money or save you time, he'll write about it!
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