Starting WordPress is a series I am doing on how to use WordPress in easy to understand terms. I found the Codex to be helpful but felt that it was very technical. These are my instructions in a more non-technical way. Visit the series page for a list of all the topics in this series.
Pages are used when you will have a static page that you will add information that can change and you would like your readers / visitors to access them possibly from a main menu.
You can add sub pages by adding a new page and assigning a parent page to it. You can also create different page templates. For example, if you website has a sidebar you may not want a certain page to have the sidebar and so you can create a template for this page that doesn’t load the side bar. I won’t be getting into that today because it’s more for users who dare to access their FTP or File Manager and add files there. It requires some technical work to get it functioning.
You would use pages to add things like a contact form, an about page, a list of your rates, policies, etc.
Posts are used when you want to share blog entries, news or updates that you expect your readers to read regularly. You will constantly be adding new content via this method and you would want all of this content to be found in one main location. Posts can also be grouped into different categories and tags or other custom taxonomy types.
Types of Posts
There are several different post formats. All themes come with support for the Standard format but WordPress allows different formats to choose from although you cannot add anymore formats other than these ones.
The below is an excerpt directly from the WordPress Codex.
- aside – Typically styled without a title. Similar to a Facebook note update.
- gallery – A gallery of images. Post will likely contain a gallery shortcode and will have image attachments.
- link – A link to another site. Themes may wish to use the first <a href=””> tag in the post content as the external link for that post. An alternative approach could be if the post consists only of a URL, then that will be the URL and the title (post_title) will be the name attached to the anchor for it.
- image – A single image. The first <img /> tag in the post could be considered the image. Alternatively, if the post consists only of a URL, that will be the image URL and the title of the post (post_title) will be the title attribute for the image.
- quote – A quotation. Probably will contain a blockquote holding the quote content. Alternatively, the quote may be just the content, with the source/author being the title.
- status – A short status update, similar to a Twitter status update.
- video – A single video or video playlist. The first <video /> tag or object/embed in the post content could be considered the video. Alternatively, if the post consists only of a URL, that will be the video URL. May also contain the video as an attachment to the post, if video support is enabled on the blog (like via a plugin).
- audio – An audio file or playlist. Could be used for Podcasting.
- chat – A chat transcript, like so:
John: foo Mary: bar John: foo 2
Note: When writing or editing a Post, Standard is used to designate that no Post Format is specified. Also if a format is specified that is invalid then standard (no format) will be used.
Not all themes come with these post formats enabled. If your theme has enabled additional formats, then you will see them in the Format section in your post editor screen.
You can however enable this yourself by adding code to you functions.php file. You can do so via FTP or through Appearances > Editor [but if you make a mistake here you will need FTP to fix it so be careful].
Add this code within the PHP confines i.e., After <?PHP and before ?> and make sure it’s not within any function so make sure the function you are pasting this code after is closed. That’s normally indicated by a semi-colon [;].
add_theme_support( 'post-formats', array( 'aside', 'gallery' ) );
you can add more formats to this code by wrapping the name in quotes, e.g., ‘status’ and separating each with a comma.
After that you should be able to see the Formats chooser in your post editor.
Next week, we’ll discuss more features available in adding post and get you started with your first post and page.