Now that you got WordPress installed it is time to start creating content. But what is this? Posts? Pages? Which one are you supposed to choose. Let me explain the difference between a Post and a Page in WordPress and show you how to get started.
Pages in WordPress
I tend to say to people that pages in WordPress are meant for the more static type of content on a website. Static content is content that doesn’t change very often through the year and doesn’t – at least in all basics – require much interaction with an audience.
By default pages do not have comments enabled, do not display the date of publishing or the date of the last update and don’t have any form of tags or categories attached to them.
They just show the content that you add to it and that is it.
Pages could very well be used for:
- Your mission statement / vision
- About page
- Contact page
- Your “Where To Find Us” page for displaying address, route to get there and a map.
- Affiliate Disclaimer (and other forms of disclaimers)
- Product pages (for as far as they do not require additional plugins)
Most brick and mortar businesses and also non-profits will want to place their mission and vision statement somewhere on their site. These are pieces of static text content which can easily go in a page.
On a sidenode, nothing in WordPress is truly static however. Everything is loaded from a database with template pages.
Your about me or about us page can nowadays be either post or page. I have actually moved all my about me pages into posts, because it makes it possible for my audience to communicate and see how long ago I updated my content.
The where to find us page is a typical brick and mortar type of business website content, not nearly as often required for an online marketing business.
Product pages could also be pages, as long as you are not planning to use a shop plugin to sell your products or some other form of database plugin to display them better.
Posts in WordPress
Posts are part of the blogroll. Posts can easily be seen as a sort of newsfeed. Every time a new item is added to the newsfeed or blogroll (every time you publish a new post), the older posts will get pushed down. The newest post is always the first to be displayed on the blogroll part of your site.
Posts do display a created date (or last updated date). You can also attach categories and tags to them to make them easier to find and relate to. Comments are also automatically enabled (by default) for all posts.
Posts are best used for:
- A Newsfeed
- A Blog
- Content that you want audience feedback on
- Content that shows the updated date, meaning they show that the site is active
- Content that you want to categorize and/or tag for
- Reviews, guides
- Actually most other content on your site
Apart from disclaimers, policies, contact page and a number of special pages, I use solely posts for my content.
How To Create A Page Or A Post In WordPress
You can find both Posts and Pages in your WordPress Dashboard menu as shown to the right.
When you hover over either, it will come with a submenu to add or show, but you can also click on either posts or pages to see the full overview and menu unfold. The unfolded menu also allows you to click on New posts / page.
To create a new page or post, hover over or click on either pages or posts and click add new. A visual text editor will appear where you can start writing your content. Your content is automatically in intervals saved as a draft into WordPress.
You can use the buttons on top of the editor for the creation of headers, change of font and fontsize, colours, the usual bold, italic and underlining markup and a bunch of other things. You can hover with your mouse over each option to see a small description of the functionality.
Here it is really all about trial and error and see which option does what to your editor and text.
When you are done creating your content, you need to click on publish to publish the new content to your site.
Note that if you are creating a post, you will also have to choose a category. You also have the option to add tags to your post. Categories are required, tags are not. It is entirely up to you if you want to use tags or not. In the next section I will explain what categories and tags are.
Categories And Tags
First of all, let me explain what a category is and what a tag is. They seem similar, but there is an essential difference.
Tagging your posts is similar in the way that we tag a photo on Facebook with whom is on the picture and where it was taken. Tags add value to the post in that they are defining attributes of the content of your post.
You should see categories as the general topics of your content. When you view a category on your website, you will find all the posts that are linked to that category.
Categories are required by every post, while tags are not. You can have zero to several tags linked to your post, while you have to have minimal one category linked to your post.
If you do not set any categories, than all new posts will automatically be categorized as “uncategorized”.
It is important to name categories a bit broader than you would do with a tag. That way you can link multiple posts under one category (topic), but be careful not to make too vague broad category names.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that you do not categorize or tag your posts for SEO, but for the usability of the site by your users.
The featured image is there to show an image next to your post in the categories, tags or blogroll overview pages. It usually doesn’t get displayed when you read the entire blog post, but this can be anyway the case with some of the themes that leverage featured image in displaying the full content.
My theme does only show the featured image on the recent posts and blogroll post streams. You can easily add images to your WordPress website and use them as your featured image here.
In some cases featured images are also used as the display image when sharing your post in social media.
There are a lot of other options when creating content within WordPress. For example, when you have installed plugins with additional content helpers, they will be displayed as extra options below and beside your page/post editor.
Examples of popular plugins are SEO plugins such as All-In-One-SEO or Yoast that improve the search engine visibility of your content.
There are also plugins that add functionality to the WordPress text editor itself.
In this tutorial I have explained you the difference between pages and posts and which one you should use for the type of content you are going to write. The actual content writing is similar for both posts and pages because they utilize the same text editor.
Posts and pages that you work on are automatically saved and do not get publicly available until you publish your post. If you post content in the past they will also get published, but with a different date. When you put out content with a future date they will be scheduled for a later release.
Categories explain the topic of your content, while tags are attributes to your content. There are a lot more options available through plugins to extend the functionality in WordPress.
Have I made you interested in creating your website with WordPress? Do you need more help creating your content? Learn how to create your very own WordPress business website now.