The early versions of WordPress were simple and barebones. Users could instantly get to grips with them due to the small numbers of options available to tinker with. As the WordPress software became more complex, the WordPress team realised that it was becoming increasingly daunting for new users, and so they streamlined a number of WordPress’ core features to ensure that these new users could easily get to grips with them.
One of the first things novice WordPress users will need to learn is the difference between ‘posts’ and ‘pages’. While they may seem similar on the surface, there are some key differences between the two. This article will explain the difference between posts and pages, explaining the circumstances in which they should be used.
- Posts – chronological frequently updated content often used for news and personal updates
- Pages – static pages, generally linked to in your navigation. Used for things like your about page, contact page, and sitemap
A blog is an ever evolving website.
Generally the front page of a blog will show a number of articles written by the author of the blog. Visitors will be able to click on the title of these articles to read the article in its entirety, and they will also be able to post comments and interact with the author in the comments section found at the end of the article.
These types of articles are known as ‘blog posts’. Blog posts are articles written in the ‘post’ format.
With most themes the front page of a blog is updated whenever a new blog post is written with the posts being shown in reverse chronological order; the newest posts are shown at the top, while the oldest can be found at the bottom.
Blog posts can be also placed into categories, and they can be ‘tagged’ with relevant keywords, too. For example, if a blog post was written about ‘oranges’, it could be tagged with the related keyword ‘oranges’ and it could be placed into a category called ‘fruit’.
Additionally, blog posts have a date on them indicating when they were written and a variety of other elements of metadata.
Pages are static pieces of content that do not change often. They are not updated on the front page of a blog and they do not feature a date. Whereas blog posts are time sensitive, blog pages will stay on a blog forever, easily reachable through links found on the blog home page.
Unlike posts, pages cannot be put into categories and they cannot be tagged with keywords, either.
When to use posts and pages
Pages should be used for important content that will remain static and will always be relevant. Since pages are not cycled and replaced like posts, they should be used for content that blog visitors will want to read every time they visit.
Posts should be used for everything else. Since they are replaced often, posts should contain content that is not timeless and won’t be required to be read by all visitors to the blog.
Posts will make up the majority of content on a WordPress blog, while pages will only be used for important content that will remain on the blog for a considerable period of time.
Learning the difference between posts and pages is important. While they may appear similar at a glance, they each have their own situational uses. Pages should be used for timeless content that will remain relatively unchanged for long periods of times, while posts should be used for content that will eventually be replaced by newer blog posts on the front page of the blog. Make sure to experiment with both posts and pages – they are both useful in their own ways.