WordPress vs Custom CMS – Which is Better For SEO?


If you’re in the process of revamping your website or are starting from scratch and want the website to be SEO-friendly, you may be wondering which route to go when it comes to choosing a content management system (CMS).

The first CMS that comes to mind is WordPress which is a fully featured CMS with lots of options and built-in SEO features. However, if you want more control over your website then a custom CMC might be a better choice.

In this blog post, we’ll be discussing WordPress and custom CMS regarding SEO friendliness. We’ll go over the pros and cons of each option to help you make a decision that’s best for your business.

Table of Contents

What Is WordPress?

WordPress is a free and open-source content management system that’s based on PHP and MySQL. Even if you don’t have any technical knowledge, you can still easily create a website thanks to its themes and plugins system.

WordPress themes allow you to create a website’s front end and plugins add various functionalities such as forms, custom posts, eCommerce capabilities, and more.

And different SEO plugins will help you to optimize your website according to SEO best practices. Despite this, it’s recommended to hire a professional SEO agency to manage your website’s SEO, because there is plenty of details that affect rankings in SERP and need specific knowledge.

What Is Custom CMS?

Now let’s take a look at custom CMS. A custom CMS is just what it sounds like – a content management system that’s been specifically designed for your website. Because it’s tailor-made for your site, a custom CMS will offer you more flexibility and control than an off-the-shelf solution like WordPress.

A custom CMS allows you to create any kind of front-end design where WordPress might have some limitations unless you create a custom WordPress theme from scratch. Also, with custom CMS you can create a back-end architecture to your liking.

But that also means that it won’t have built-in SEO options as WordPress does and you have to implement SEO features and options by yourself.

Get SEO Audit for FREE

Simply, send us a link to your website and we’ll provide you with a detailed report, outlining what you can do to improve your SEO.

WordPress SEO Benefits

When it comes to choosing the right content management system for SEO it’s hard to beat WordPress because it’s a very SEO-friendly CMS out of the box and can be optimized additionally with SEO plugins.

wordpress seo benefits

With WordPress, you can optimize a website’s technical and on-page SEO easily and it works for every type of website whether it’s a blog, agency, business, or eCommerce. You can optimize the website very fast with the SEO plugin.

For example, RankMath is a very popular and powerful plugin for SEO that allows you to optimize everything with the free version. With the correct settings, your website will have great technical and on-page SEO optimization.

It’s great for optimizing local SEO, writing SEO titles and meta descriptions can edit robots.txt files, adding sitemaps, implementing Google Search Console and Analytics within the plugin, and has a built-in redirection tool.

Also, it’s great for Ecommerce websites because RankMath includes settings for Woocommerce such as product schemas and more.

And because WordPress offers SEO optimization out of the box and offers easy implementation of different SEO features with the plugins, it’s the easiest CMS for SEO optimization.

WordPress Pros:

  • WordPress is easy to use and has a low learning curve. This makes it ideal for small businesses and startups who might not have the budget to hire a web developer.
  • It comes with basic built-in SEO features and you can use various SEO plugins to optimize it according to best practices.
  • WordPress is open source, which means there is a large community of developers always working on new updates and security patches.
  • Since WordPress is so popular, most hosting providers offer specialized WordPress hosting plans that can give your website a little boost.

WordPress Cons:

  • Because WordPress is so popular, it’s also a target for hackers. If you’re not careful, your website could be hacked and taken offline.
  • One of the main complaints about WordPress is the website speed. However, with good hosting and optimization, you can get a good performance.
  • While many resources are available for WordPress, it can still be tricky to troubleshoot issues if you’re not a technical person.
  • Sometimes it can take effort to find the perfect plugin or theme for your website. There are so many low-quality options out there that you may feel discouraged from continuing with making websites at all!

Custom CMS SEO Benefits

Building a website with a custom CMS is a great option when you want to have a custom design and back-end architecture and all the custom features. However, it will cost you much more and it won’t be SEO-friendly right away.

custom cms benefits

You will need an experienced developer who knows SEO to correctly optimize it and also implement various SEO features to be easily managed from the admin panel.

However, custom CMS gives you freedom and you can implement the SEO features you need and make it minimal and not bloated. However, the system must be built in the right way because you might have issues later.

And there are cases when developers have issues implementing SEO options and features when they build custom CMS. So, you might choose a different approach like WordPress or pre-made CMSs for different frameworks such as Laravel, Django, etc.

In a nutshell, a custom CMS is a great option for building custom websites but it cost more than WordPress, and it might not have all the SEO features you need if and may cause some issues later.

Custom CMS Pros:

  • A custom CMS gives you complete control over your website. You’re not reliant on anyone else for updates or security patches.
  • You can tailor the CMS exactly to your needs, which means you won’t end up paying for features that you’ll never use.
  • A custom CMS can be more secure than WordPress since it’s not as well-known and doesn’t have as large of a target on its back.
  • You have complete control over your server environment, which makes it easier to properly optimize your website for search engines.
  • A custom CMS can be faster and more efficient since it’s not weighed down by unnecessary features and bloatware.

Custom CMS Cons:

  • A custom CMS can be expensive to develop and maintain if you don’t have an in-house team of developers.
  • If you’re not careful, a custom CMS can become bloated and difficult to use. This can make training new employees or making changes to your website difficult and time-consuming.
  • A custom CMS can be more difficult to use than a platform like WordPress since it won’t have as many resources available if you need help.
  • You have to build and implement every SEO feature by yourself.


So which is better for SEO – WordPress or custom CMS? There isn’t necessarily a right or wrong answer here – it depends on what’s best for your business. But WordPress offers very easy SEO optimization implementation and many different SEO tools and features you can manage. While with custom CMS you have to optimize the website and implement every SEO tool by yourself.

Get SEO Audit for FREE

Simply, send us a link to your website and we’ll provide you with a detailed report, outlining what you can do to improve your SEO.

Sandro Germisashvili


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