WordPress is perhaps the most universally-loved content management system (CMS) on the web. According to a recentCMSanalysisof the top 1 million sites on Alexa, WordPress commands a 54.8% market share, followed distantly by Joomla (10.5%) and Drupal (6.0%). Beyond its legendary user-friendliness, there’s another key reason why professional web developers consistently turn to WordPress: SEO. WordPress is exceptionally versatile when it comes to integrating search engine optimization best practices, and it has been since its inception in 2003.

Here are a few of the top reasons why:

1. WordPress Separates SEO from Design and Content

Separation of presentation from content is one of the cornerstone principles of web design. The same principle holds true for SEO, and for many of the same reasons. WordPress allows SEO professionals to tweak the search engine critical components of a website without disrupting the design or content on the site. This allows search marketers to efficiently keep pace with the constantly evolving search engine algorithms.

2. WordPress is Easy for End Users

WordPress SEO changes can be done entirely on the “backend” of your website. This means that, as a client, you don’t have to keep track of the new SEO best practices while posting to your blog or updating site content. It’s a bit like buying a new car–even though the car you drive today may be safer and more fuel efficient than the car you drove when you first got your driver’s license, you don’t have to take a class in order to learn how to operate it.

3. WordPress Loads Quickly

WordPress, like all major content management systems, is database driven. Database queries have a big impact on how fast a page loads. In some cases, the way a CMS handles database queries can have a larger impact on your site speed than factors such as bandwidth, net congestion and the size of your content.

Out of the box, WordPress queries databases very efficiently. But there’s still plenty of opportunities for SEOs and web developers to implement WordPress database optimization best practices to reduce site load times even further. This is particularly important because, starting last year, Google factors sitespeedinwebsearchranking. In other words, quick loading pages rank better.

4. WordPress is Open Source

To the layman, open source simply means free. While that’s an important factor in determining your overall web development budget, for SEO professionals, open source means near limitless opportunities for expanding the functionality of the platform. With WordPress, this is done in two primary ways: WordPress themes and WordPress plugins. Thanks to the open source community, there are numerous mature SEO plugins readily available for deployment.  From creating XML sitemaps to optimizing meta tags, plugins allow WordPress sites to integrate SEO best practices in a modular and seamless fashion.  And for any feature that doesn’t yet exist, a skilled WordPress developer will be able to create his or her own plugin or theme from scratch to serve the client’s specific needs.

5. Google Likes WordPress

In 2009, Matt Cutts, head of web spam at Google, praised WordPress as the bestbloggingplatformforSEO during the WordPress Conference WordCamp. Cutts called WordPress a “fantastic choice” for SEO. In fact, he uses WordPress on his own blog, where you can find a video of his WordCamp presentation entitled “StraightfromGoogle: WhatYouNeedtoKnow.”

According to Cutts, WordPress takes care of 80 to 90% of the mechanics of SEO, with a little help from some popular SEO plugins. For the remaining 10 to 20%, you can call FirmMedia.

To learn more about the SEO benefits of WordPress, be sure to attend our upcoming webinar: WordPress 101 on July 14.