Posts vs. Pages

WordPress features both post and static page support.

This tends to confuse new users, so here’s a quick overview of both, and on when to use them.

On Posts, Pages And Entries

In the WordPress jargon, blog posts, or posts are time sensitive pieces of information that get listed on your site’s blog pages, i.e. (typically) its front page, category pages, monthly archives pages, and so on.

From a technical standpoint, static pages, or pages, differ from posts in five ways:

  • They live outside of the blog chronology
  • They’ve no categories
  • They can live in a hierarchy
  • They can be ordered in an arbitrary manner
  • They can have special page templates

Put otherwise, they’re time insensitive pieces of hierarchical information. Their use will usually seem more natural to users who were previously creating sites with Front Page or Dreamweaver.

On this site, in Semiologic Pro, and more recently in WordPress, you’ll occasionally see entries. It is short for posts and static pages.

On Whether To Use Posts Or Pages

Very quickly, you’ll be confronted with deciding whether to use posts or pages on your site — or both.

I’ve done my own trials and errors during my early days of blogging. I feel comfortable writing that blog posts are tailored to be assigned keywords and listed in reverse chronological order. Full Stop. Try organizing them any differently and you’ve a recipe for premature hair loss.

The underlying reason lies in that the WordPress internals related to categories are broken. Thus, consider the advise I give in the silo web design resources:

  1. Place your important content on static pages.
  2. Use your blog to inundate your site with links.
  3. Tag your posts and pages (especially if you’re using Related Widgets).
  4. Use categories to deliver continuously fed, topic-specific RSS feeds.

As a bonus, your “important” content won’t end up on a spam-blog (splog) that picked up your RSS feed.