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The WordPress Home Page, Posts Page and Front Page

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In this basic lesson I discuss the differences between the home page, the posts page and the front page. WordPress uses these terms in very specific ways. I also demonstrate how to create a static front page and the behavior of a posts page.

Video Transcript

And so what we’ll do now is we will move on to talking about homepage, posts page, and front page. Now, let’s see… we’re going to close some of these. In mycategories.byobwebsite, I’ve got lots and lots of posts and sample pages that I’ve done stuff one and we’re going to use this as a demonstration. In WordPress, the home page always means the posts page. And a posts page is a page that displays your blog posts. So ignore my little carousel here which is inserted with a custom function. A post page shows you some combination of featured posts and then teaser posts or teasers and shows them in the order in which they were published. So the latest post is in the top, the post before that is below it and then they just keep on going in that same order. So at the bottom of the page, you have the you know, the least… the oldest post.

And if you actually… this is also inserted with a custom function so I want you to ignore that too because this is where the page really ends is right here if we didn’t have that custom function. And then if you select these previous entries, it just takes you to the next set of older posts and you just keep working through these older posts until there are no more older posts to see. And you get to the end of the post and we’re not there yet. Page 5 looks like we’re dang close, yeah. Page 5 doesn’t have another page for you to go to and you can see that that’s page 5. If we go back to page 1, this is you know, that’s our first page of posts.

Okay so that is what the home page is by default and what a post page does is it displays posts in order in which they were posted with the ability for you to scroll backwards through time, looking at those posts.

Okay so if we go over to our dashboard though and if we look at my page for example or my site, oops, pardon me. Go back to my site. This is my home page, right? If you type in byobwebsite.com, this is where you end up. This is clearly not a post page and that’s because this is called a static front page. And so, in order to create a static front page, you go to WordPress settings and then reading. And here’s where you see this whole question of front page, blog page thing play out. By default, this is the way it works in WordPress, the front page displays your latest posts. But you can in fact, decide that the front page will be a static page and in that case, you select the page you want to be your home page. In this case, it’s my page named home. And you select the post… the page you want to show your posts. And so in that case, it’s a page that I created called blog. And if we hit save changes now and go back and look at the site, now we have our home page where there’s a static content and then where I’ve added these functions for you know, showing posts and teasers in a different way. But you can see it looks different than it used to.

But the blog page goes back to this blog layout just like we saw before. And that’s because I configured the home page to be a front page and this page I created called blog page to be my posts page. Now in order for this to be the case, you actually have to create a blog page. So for example, if you look at pages, I do in fact, have a page that I created called home and that page has this home text. The purpose of this site is to demonstrate and test various functions related to the use, display, and manipulation of categories. If we go view that page, that’s what this says right here, right? So that’s my page that I created and turned into my home page.

Alternatively, if we look at pages, scroll down and find my blog pages, there’s another page that I created. It has absolutely no content in it at all and in fact, if I add content, for example, if I add content, it won’t show. If we update this and view this page, you can see there’s no… if I add content, it won’t show. Because all of that is being replaced by the blog functionality so it’ s a page that I created but it doesn’t… besides being a page, it’s not going to behave like a page. It’s going to behave like a blog page by displaying all the posts.

So that is the home page, posts page, and front page. And we regularly use the term you know, if you want to do this on your home page but that’s very loose and colloquial and it’s important, I think, at the very beginning to have in mind, a clear understanding that your home page is either a posts page or a static front page. And WordPress uses the terminology home page for something that is the blog posts page and it uses front page for a static front page. And as a beginner, it doesn’t really matter too very much because you’re not really doing anything that distinguishes between those two. But once you start adding code and you want to start adding conditional code to add something to the posts page but not to the front page, you will use conditional code that identifies either if is home or if is front page.

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