Typically, most websites have a main page that acts as the virtual ’reception desk’ of your business and greets every person who arrives on your site via the front door.
The front page of your website is important because it is generally the first page a visitor sees when they arrive on your site if they type in your domain name on their web browser, or navigate to your website from a search engine or directory listing.
The main page can also serve as a landing page to catch the attention of visitors, let your visitors know who you are, what you do and also to help them navigate to important sections of the website.
In a static website, the main page and its content are normally ‘fixed’ to a specific home page file (e.g. www.mywebsite.com/index.php), so if you want visitors to see different content on the front page when they arrive on your site via the main URL (i.e. www.mywebsite.com), you would normally need to edit the content of the page itself, or log into your server and modify file names around.
WordPress makes this easier for users, especially for non-technical users who don’t want to mess around with stuff like editing web page code in server files.
In a default installation, WordPress acts as a ‘blog’ and presents a changing list of recently-published posts, with the post titles and first paragraph or two of the content visible for each article published, and links to separate post pages where your visitors can then keep see the full content (e.g. ”click here to continue reading” …).
With WordPress, however, you have the flexibility of creating as many pages as you want and then specifying which of these pages you would like designated as being the static page your site visitors will see.
Better still, you can also change the home page of your website or blog as often as you like, without touching the content, simply by having a number of different pages you can point to as the site’s static page, and then selecting the one you would like to display as your home page.
This feature is very handy to have. For example, you may want visitors arriving on your site’s home page to:
- Read a sales letter
- See a ‘splash’ page before navigating through to the rest of your site
- Promote a new ‘book of the month’ each month, or ‘product of the month’
- Promote seasonal offers (e.g. a ’Valentine’ themed page as Valentine’s Day approaches)
- View different product categories on your e-commerce catalog at regularly-spaced intervals (e.g. fortnightly), or special occasions (e.g. themed events happening in your area)
- View information on ‘split-test’ sales pages (create two or more sales pages with similar content to test different page elements, e.g. headlines, pricing and discounts, different layout, etc., then display one version as the home page for a specific period of time and then replace with the other version for the same amount of time to see which page ultimately results in better conversions)
- Or even land on a ‘pre-launch’ page if your site hasn’t officially launched yet!
This tutorial shows you how to create a static WP home page.
How To Make A WordPress Page Your Home Page: Step-By-Step Tutorial
Web developers often refer to the “home” page as the main page where visitors can go to learn more about what your website has to offer or the starting page where they can navigate to other sections.
On the other hand, the ‘homepage’ (one word) is the actual page or file visitors go to when they click on a link to visit your “home page” (two words).
WordPress lets you select any page on your blog as the ‘homepage’ and assign it as the main page of your website (i.e. your “home page”).
To set any page in your site to display as the Home Page log into your site, then go to your admin menu and select Settings > Reading …
In the Reading Settings screen, change the following:
- Front page displays: select ‘A static page …’
- Front page: Click on the drop down menu and select the page you want to set as the Home Page (choose any of the pages showing in this dropdown menu)
Click Save Changes after selecting your options to update your settings and change the home page …
After saving, click on Visit Site (tip: right-click and select ‘Open Link In New Tab’ to view the homepage in a new browser window without leaving your Reading Settings screen) …
The page you have specified in Front page displays > A static page should now show as the new home page of your site …
You can specify a new home page for your site as often as you want, just by repeating the above steps and selecting a different page …
Your newly-selected page will become the new home page immediately …
When you select any page as the homepage of your site, WordPress reassigns the domain root to the URL of your home page.
What this means is that if you select the page with the URL shown below your new home page:
The above page will automatically be assigned the following URL:
If you type the ‘old’ URL of the page you have now specified as the new home page into your browser, WordPress will direct you back to the home page.
Also, if you specify another page to be the static home page, WordPress assigns your old home page back to its original URL …
Congratulations! Now you know how to set a page in WordPress as a static home page.
"These tutorials have so much information and are easy to understand. If you use WordPress or plan to in the future these will help you with everything you need to know." - Valisa (Mesa, Arizona)
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