How to Import a Static Site Into WordPress
By Nathan McGinty
Static HTML websites are great for businesses looking to get started on the Web, but for a business that wants to get serious about its online presence, a dynamic content management system, such as WordPress, is needed. There are a number of solutions for importing a static site into WordPress, but one of the most powerful and flexible plugins is called HTML Import 2. The plugin is free, installs in seconds and allows you to quickly grab your old HTML and bring it into your new WordPress website.
Log in to your WordPress website using the administrator name and password. If there isn't a login link on the front page, you can log in at the following address: http://www.yoursite.org/wp-admin.php. Change "yoursite.org" for your site domain.
Click the "Plug In" icon that resembles an electrical plug on the left-hand side of the dashboard. Select "Add New" from the menu that appears.
Type "Import HTML" into the "Search" box at the top of the screen and click "Search Plugins." Look for the plugin "HTML Import 2" toward the top of the results. Click "Install Plugin" beneath the "Import HTML" plugin name.
Open your static website in a browser. Select "View Source" from the toolbar menu at the top of the screen. Some browsers will also allow you to select "View Source" by right-clicking on the page itself.
Search through the HTML code for the tags that identify your content. This will vary from site to site. For example, the code could be contained inside an content tag and look something like this:
<div id="main content">
Content could also be contained inside a table:
<td name"main content" width="800">
Make a note of the tag (<div>,<td>, etc.) and any attributes.
Click the "Settings" icon in the bottom left-hand corner of the WordPress dashboard. Select "HTML Import" from the submenu that appears.
Click the "HTML Tag" underneath the "Select Content By" region in the top of the page. Fill in the "tag", "attribute" and "value" tags of the static HTML content that you noted in Step 5. Select "Save Settings" at the bottom of the screen.
Click the "Tools" icon (which looks like a hammer) on the left-hand side of the dashboard. Select "Import" from the submenu.
Click "HTML" from the list of import options. The screen gives you a chance to look over your import options. Change any of these by going back to the "HTML Import" menu from "Settings." Click "Import HTML" when you are satisfied.
If importing static HTML to an already existing WordPress site, back up the site beforehand.
Nathan McGinty started writing in 1995. He has a Bachelor of Science in communications from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Arts in international journalism from City University, London. He has worked in the technology industry for more than 20 years, in positions ranging from tech support to marketing.