Typically, most websites have an initial page that acts as the virtual ‘front desk’ of your business and welcomes every person who arrives via your front door.
The home page of your website is arguably one of the most important pages of your entire site because it is generally the first thing 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.
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 facilitate navigation to other sections of your website.
In a traditional website, the main page and its content are normally intrinsically part of the home page file (e.g. www.mywebsite.com/index.php), so if you want your visitors to see different content on your home page when they land 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.
WordPress makes things like managing pages easier for users, especially for those who don’t want to mess around with stuff like editing page code in server files.
By default, 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 post published, and links pointing to separate pages where visitors can then keep see the full article (e.g. ”click here to read the full article” …).
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 assigned as being the static page your website visitors will see.
As you will soon discover, you can also replace the home page of your website as often as you like, without touching the content, just by creating a number of different pages you can point to as the site’s static page, and then selecting the one you would like to show as the home page of your site.
This is very handy to have. For example, you may want visitors arriving on your site via the front page to:
- Read a sales letter
- See a list of navigation options before navigating to other sections of your site
- Promote a new ‘book of the month’ each month, or ‘product of the month’
- Promote seasonal information (e.g. a ‘Season’s Greetings’ themed offer at the end of the year)
- View different sections of your e-commerce store catalog at regularly-spaced intervals (e.g. quarterly), or special occasions (e.g. sports events in your region)
- View information on ‘split-test’ sales pages (create two or more sales pages with similar content to test different page elements, e.g. headlines or a video, pricing and discounts, different font sizes, etc., then show one version as the home page for a specific period of time and then replace with the other version for the same period 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!
In this tutorial, you are going to learn how to create a static WordPress home page.
How To Make A WordPress Page Your Home Page: Tutorial
To specify any page on your site as your home page log into your site, then go to your navigation 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 page listed in this menu)
Click the Save button after selecting your options to update the settings and set your new home page …
After saving, click on Visit Site (tip: right-click and open the link in a new tab to open the homepage in a new browser window without leaving your Reading Settings screen) …
The page you selected in Front page displays > A static page should be showing as your site’s home page …
You can change the home page for your site as many times as you like, just by repeating the above steps and selecting another page from your dropdown menu …
The newly-set page will become the new home page as soon as you save your new settings …
When you select any page to become the homepage of your site, WordPress reassigns the domain root to become the URL of the page.
What this means is that if you make a page with the URL shown below your site’s home page:
The above page will 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 web browser, WordPress will direct you to the home page.
Also, if you choose another page to be the static home page, WordPress assigns your previous home page back to its original URL …
Congratulations! Now you know how to set a page in WordPress as the static home page.
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