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Lesson 12 – Part 6 – Add Blog Functionality to the Site

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In order for us to add blog functionality to the site, I want to first look at the architecture that we set up for this site at the very beginning.

Site Architecture Before Blog Functionality

This is the site architecture before adding the blog functionality. We have our home page and under our home page was our services, our testimonials, case studies and about. The services had 3 different sub pages and the case studies had 3 different sub pages. And these are all static pages or static sub pages.

Site Architecture Once Blog Functionality is Added

Now once we add the blog functionality to this site, we’ve got our articles page. And the articles will have a couple of different categories and each of those categories will have posts. And so this is essentially, the map, the hierarchy of the site. And so we’re just going to start off with that right off the bat.

Add First Post to the Site

And we’re going to come over to our site and I’m going to start off with this new, add new post. Okay and I’m going to just use this content and design the master bathroom, that’s going to be the name of the post. Then I’m going to come over here and just use all this text. And then I’m going to paste from Word. Now I’ve got all my text in there.

Set Featured Image

And now I want to set the featured image so I’m going to come down here and set the featured image. And I need to upload a file so I’m going to select my bathroom file. And I’m just going to say set featured image.

Add a Category

And then finally, what I’m going to do is give it a category. Now I can give it a category from here. Right now, there’s only uncategorized. So I can add a new category here and that category is how to design your home, okay.

I could choose to make that a parent or a child of uncategorized. Obviously, I don’t want to do that so I’m just going to add a new category. And that automatically adds a category to this post.

View the Finished Post

And if I hit publish, I can go view the post and here we are. We’ve got our title. We’ve got our you know, the name and the category name and then we’ve got the text and we’ve got the previous post. And if we looked at our articles, now we have how to design a master bathroom as sitting there with view the rest of the article and 0 comments.

Create Additional Categories

Now we’re going to create 3 more posts in rapid succession but first I want to create a new category. I’m going to create the other category. So under post, go to categories. Now you can see the categories that have been created, how to design your home and uncategorized.

We’re going to actually create 3 more. We’re working with an architect design ideas and site design. So we’ll create one, working with an architect and it’s not going to have any parent, add the new category. And then design ideas is also not going to have a parent.

If I was creating a hierarchy like if I was going to do how to design your home and then bathrooms, I can do that, right? We could say bathrooms. And then the parent, I could choose how to design your home and now you have this nice, little hierarchy here, how to design your home and then bathrooms. And then site design was the last one.

Add Additional Posts

Now I have all those categories created. Let’s come over here and add a new post. I’m going to add 3 new posts… 1, 2, 3. Okay so designing around a difficult site. Let’s just go get that content one more time. In fact, we’re going to do that to all of these. Okay, designing around a difficult site.

Now you can see we’ve got more categories to choose from here, right? So we’re going to go ahead and choose site design. And then we’re going to set our featured image and I think we have to upload that file, select the file. Here’s our difficult site image. Set it as a featured image and publish the post.

And then the next one was craftsman front porch. And let’s see, design ideas was that one. And then I’ve set our featured image. Upload that file, select the file, craftsman front porch. Set the featured image and then publish it.

And then the last one, choose the right architect, working with an architect as its category, set the featured image, upload files, select the file. We’ll just use that one. Set the featured image and publish.

Let’s view this post. I think we’re going to find that all our posts are in there now. Yeah okay so choose the right architect.

Changing the Number of Posts to Show

We come over to articles. Now we’ve got two articles and we’ve only got two articles because I have still got this thing misconnected. I limited the posts to only two so I that I could see the previous post and next post navigation when I was designing it. But then I never changed it back.

So the way you change that back is inside the Thesis Skin Editor under Home, you click on this little gearshift there, go over to wp loop and then under number of posts to show, I’m going to say 10. That’s normally what you would say, something like that. We’re going to refresh this now and now, all 5 posts including the Hello World post show up here.

SEO – Change the Permalinks to Show Categories

Okay so there’s one last thing we want to do here. Notice how this is the name of the domain and then the name of the post? That’s actually not that great for SEO.

Remember that when we talked about SEO, we learned that Google wants the content to be organized hierarchically and if every post is just name of the website plus post name, there is no hierarchical organization. So Google sees the site as not being organized then. So what we want to do is we want to change the permalinks so that the category shows up in advance of the post name.

So the way we do that is to come over here to our dashboard and go down to settings and down to permalinks. And you have a number of options here. Right now, it’s post name. But what we’re going to do here is add category post name. That is a slash and a percent sign and then the word category and then the percent sign. That’s all it is for the permalink.

And this will now put the category in front of the post name. And if your category is hierarchical then it will create the hierarchy of categories before the post name which can be a very useful tool in getting an SEO-friendly URL.

Review the Changes

So if we hit save changes to this and then we come back over and visit… let’s see. Okay so now you’ve got the name of the site, design ideas, craftsman front porch, right? The name of the site, working with an architect, choose the right architect. You can see how that is an excellent SEO title. If this was rickandersonarchitects.com/workingwithanarchitect/choosetherightarchitect, everybody in the world would know what this page was about based on that URL.

Now we’ve essentially set up the blog aspect of our site. We’ve created the blog posts. We’ve created categories. We’ve assigned those categories to these posts and we are in the position to use blog related widgets.

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