If you want an easy way to manage your content online, then you really should consider building your website with WordPress.
WordPress provides users with two main content publishing types: WordPress Posts and WordPress Pages.
In this article, you will learn about the significant differences between WordPress Posts and WordPress Pages and which type you should use when publishing content to your website or blog.
First, we’ll help you understand the main differences, and then we’ll focus on ways to use Posts and Pages on your site.
WordPress Posts vs Pages
With WordPress, you can publish content using either Posts or Pages.
Although your blog readers and site visitors may not care whether you use Posts or Pages to display content on your site, it’s important that you understand the main differences between these two features, so you can choose whichever one you feel is the most appropriate type whenever you have new information to share online.
Let’s take a look, then, at these differences, starting with WordPress Posts.
What do you think about when you hear the word “blog”? Most people associate weblogs with content related to documenting personal experiences, sharing latest news and updates, and so on.
When writing content for a blog, you would normally use a post. We refer to these as “blog posts.”
Blog posts can be used to publish all of this content online, but there is another reason for using WordPress posts, and that is discussed in our WordPress Traffic Blueprint article series.
To learn more about this article series, go here: Web Traffic Blueprint Part 1 – Learn How To Create A Traffic-Getting Machine With WordPress
By default, Posts are entries listed by date and typically displayed in reverse chronological order on your site home page, so that the most recently published post entry shows above the older posts …
(Posts normally display in reverse chronological order, with the latest blog post showing above earlier posts)
How WordPress Posts Display
A Post can display as an entry summary in the site’s main page or the blog page …
(Blog posts displayed as entries on a blog page)
And also as a single post on your site’s single post template …
(Single blog post)
To learn how to create a blog page in WordPress, see this tutorial: How To Create A Blog In Your WordPress Site
Learn how to create a new Post in WordPress here: How To Create A New Post In WordPress
”Sticky” Posts feature before your other blog entries …
(WordPress Posts can be featured on your blog page)
Note: We cover how to make a WordPress post “sticky” in another tutorial.
Where WP Posts Appear On Your Web Site
Posts can be referenced in different sections of your web site like Archive Pages, Category Pages, Recent Posts, as well as in a number of widgets …
(Posts appear throughout various sections of your site)
Posts also display in your RSS feed section, making your content easier to syndicate …
(Posts automatically display in your WordPress RSS feed)
Posts can display a comments section below the main content area, allowing blog readers to comment on your post …
Posts can be grouped according to Post Categories…
(Post Category Archives)
And posts can also be referenced using Tags …
Note: We explain WordPress Categories, Tags, RSS Feeds, etc. in more detail in other articles.
Now that we’ve seen some of the unique characteristics of Posts, let’s take a look at what makes WordPress Pages and Posts similar.
Similarities Between Posts Vs Pages
pages and posts have a number of things in common:
- WordPress posts and pages both share the same features and methods for adding post/page titles using title fields and composing and formatting content using the WordPress Content Editor.
- WP pages and posts both use theme templates to help maintain a consistent look throughout your entire site.
- WordPress pages and posts let you use search engine friendly URLs
- WordPress posts and pages are both viewed as indexable content by search engines.
- Depending on the theme and plugins you have installed on your website or blog, WP pages and posts both give you control over SEO settings like Title, Meta Description, and Meta Keywords.
- Depending on the plugins and theme you have installed, content from or links to WP posts and pages can display in your menu and widget areas.
Although pages and posts have many similarities, pages have several key distinctions that make them different from posts.
Pages typically live outside the blog chronology and are mostly used to showcase information to readers that is less likely to change, such as:
- Your “About Us” Page
- Contact Us Page
- Products And Services
- Resources Section
- etc …
A Pages is not listed by date and doesn’t use tags or categories.
You can, however, use Pages to help you organize and manage your site content hierarchically.
WordPress Parent And Child Pages
For example, you can organize content topics into “Parent” pages (where each of your main content areas gets its own page), and then add nested pages (called “child” pages) to each of your secondary sections …
(In WordPress, main pages and nested pages are referred to as “parent” pages and “child” pages)
You can add as many “child” pages as you need to keep your content organized within “topic hierarchies”, as shown in the diagram below …
(Organize Your Pages Using Parent & Child WordPress Pages)
Pages can be displayed in the sidebar of your site using the Pages Widget …
(Display A List Of Your Pages Using A Pages Widget)
In the above example, a “Pages Widget” is used to display links to five parent pages and three “nested” pages.
As well as displaying pages through sidebar widgets, most WordPress themes also display pages in menu areas within the header and footer sections of your site …
Templates For Pages
Pages can also use different page templates. These page templates normally include template files, template tags and other PHP code that allow unique, complex or sophisticated features to be added to pages.
This is useful for creating different page styles, such as:
- Sales Pages
- Opt-In Pages
- Video Pages
- Membership Pages
For example, below are just some of the sales page templates of a popular theme called OptimizePress …
(Sample sales templates from OptimizePress)
At its simplest, “pages” should be used for ”non-blog” type information and “posts” for promoting your business. In fact, if you removed all content published using posts from your website, you would end up with something that resembles a traditional website structure (i.e. a website that comprises of the standard web pages found in most business websites.)
What Pages Are Not
Another way to understand the important differences between WordPress pages and posts is to look at what pages are not:
- Pages are not posts. Pages are not processed by the WordPress Loop, which is PHP code used by WordPress to display posts and to cycle post data (like time, category, etc.) through the main page of your blog. Note, however, that you can change this using various plugins or customizations.
- Pages cannot be associated with post categories and cannot be assigned post tags. This means that pages can only be organized according to a hierarchy where you specify and arrange the order of main pages and subpages, not by referencing tags or categories.
- Pages are not server files. Unlike traditional websites that are built from a collection of static pages saved as individual files inside your server, WordPress pages are created, managed and stored in your CMS (like Posts).
- Pages are not included in your site’s RSS feed. Earlier, we explained that posts automatically show up in your RSS feed section. Pages do not. Note: there are plugins available that will display pages in your site’s RSS feed.
- Pages (or even a specific post) can be set as a fixed “main” page. In separate tutorials, we explain how to specify a page to be the home page of your WordPress site, and show you how to create a blog page (where a list of your most recent blog post entries display in a separate blog page).
Because posts and post content are referenced from many different areas of your WordPress site (e.g. archives, searches, tags, categories, RSS feeds, custom menus, etc.) than content published using pages, many SEO experts recommend publishing content designed to attract more exposure from search engines using posts rather than pages.
What Types Of Content Can You Add To Posts And Pages?
WordPress lets you easily add and edit the following types of content into both Posts and Pages:
You can add plain, formatted and/or hyperlinked text-based content in a variety of fonts and styles to posts and pages …
(Add text-based content to WordPress)
WordPress lets you use both a Visual Content Editor and a Text (HTML) Editor (or both) for adding text-based content into posts and pages.
Depending on how have configured your settings and plugins, you can also add SEO information to posts and pages (e.g. titles, keywords and descriptions that let you specify how you want your posts or pages to appear in search engine results), create custom excerpts, etc.
You can add or embed media content into your pages and posts, such as videos, audio files, Flash presentations, images, photos, graphic elements, banners, etc …
(Add media-based content to WordPress)
Many of these scripts also allow you to control the content that appears on your site remotely. This is useful for managing site-wide banner ads, subscription forms and time-sensitive content (e.g. special pricing), or adding information such as tax rates, feeds, etc …
(Add content to WordPress via externally-managed scripts and applications)
To learn more about pasting scripts into pages and posts, see this tutorial: Inserting Code Into WordPress Posts And Pages
Content can also be added to posts and pages by inserting code directly into your file templates. Please note, however, that in order to modify site templates, you will need to have at least a basic understanding of code languages like HTML and PHP.
As you can see, pages and posts have a number of significant differences, and knowing what these differences are can help you decide when to use one or the other type to publish content about your business.
Hopefully, this article has given you a better understanding of the differences between WordPress Pages and Posts.
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