We’re going to start off here by actually creating pages. This is our page outline, right? We’ve got our Finished Projects, our Testimonials, Services, About and Article. Those are our main pages and then inside of some of those main pages, there are subpages. For example, inside of finished projects is West Seattle view home, East Side luxury spec and Edmonds View remodel.
Current Pages on the Site
So we’re just going to do that. We’re going to start that right there in our site. And this is our home page right now and it’s displaying the standard blog post that comes in WordPress. We’re going to come over here to our dashboard and I’m going to dismiss this thing here. And you can see we’ve got posts and pages here.
First we’re going to look at all pages. This is a list of all the pages on your site. Right now, when installed WordPress just comes with a single page. But if you come over to my site for a moment and look at the page list on BYOB Website, I have so many pages on my site that I need to use tools to help organize it. So if we look at all pages I have 141 pages on my site. This is all of the pages that are on my site and right now we’ve only got a single page and it’s just a sample page.
How to Create New Pages
In order to create a new page, all you do is come over here to add new. Click on that add new and give your page a name. I think what we’re going to do is start off with the homepage.
So we’ll create a page called homepage and just over here, hit publish. And then we’re going to create another page so we’ll click add new. And the next page we’re going to create is going to be finish projects. Now hit publish and then we’ll say add new again and we’ll say Services. Hit publish, add new. And About, hit publish; add new, Testimonials, hit publish. Add new and then we’re going to create our Articles and hit publish.
Now if we come back over to all pages, you can see we have all of our pages laid out here and they are laid out in alphabetical order. If we come over and take a look at my site, you can see these are not laid out in alphabetical order. These are laid out in what is called menu order and I’m going to show you how to do that here in a moment. But in the absence of menu order, WordPress lays out your page list in alphabetical order.
Why You Want to Edit a Page Rather than Trashing it and Starting Over
Something that I see new WordPress users do all the time is they’ll do something on their homepage and they’re going to say, “Oh my gosh, I did that wrong.” And they decide, well they’re just going to move it to the trash. You know, you don’t need to do it that way. All you need to do is just change the page. You don’t need to delete it, throw it away and start from scratch.
It’s very easy to change the content of a page. It’s very easy to delete all of the content of the page and start all over again. You’re much better off if you do not try starting over. But if you just go ahead and keep with the same one.
One of the things that new people do all the time is they’ll say, “Oh well, gosh, that’s not really good, I don’t want to do that. I’m just going to throw this one away and then I’m going to create a new one.” And so they will decide to put it in the trash and then create a new one. You can see here what happens. I’ll send Home to trash and add a new one. I’m going to call it home and hit publish.
You see the URL is now called home 2. If I come along and try to delete that and make it home, hit okay, it won’t do it. It won’t let you have two pages with the same name. And since you can’t have 2 pages with the same name, you’re going to be stuck with this home 2 for the rest of your site which is one of the good reasons for not doing it.
This confuses people all of the time because they’ll say, “You know, I don’t understand why this menu is going to home 2 when I told it to go to home or vice versa.” They don’t realize that even though they threw it away, what has really happened is it resides in their trash. And if they go to trash, they’re both there. Here is the original one and here is the new one.
The only way to get rid of them is to delete them permanently and that still doesn’t always get you back the original name. So do yourself a favor and just modify and edit pages rather than throwing them in the trash unless you don’t want them anymore. Go ahead and just edit it rather than throwing it in the trash and starting from scratch.
Why You Need to Make Sure You Give Pages Titles
Something else people do that causes them problems is they will create a page and not give it a name. So I’ll come along here and I’ll hit publish. And then it gets this funny little URL here. And I don’t know why this happens, that is, I don’t know why it doesn’t occur to a new user that they always have to give their page a name but you do.
You always have to give your post and page a name and this is what happens when you fail to do so. Let’s see, we’ll update this. If you come over to all pages now, you’ll see a page that says no title. And if you’ve got a bunch of those no title pages, you don’t have any idea what to do with that. You can’t add a no title page to a menu. You can’t really do anything well with the URL in a no title page. Really, you need to make sure that you give your pages titles.
Now what what we’re going to do is create our subpages. Let’s add new here and we’ll say West Seattle View Home, this is a subpage of finished projects, right? And you set the fact that it’s a subpage over here under page attributes. That is you’re going to pick your parent. If it says no parent, it’s a top level page. So what you’ll do is come along here and pick your parent and that parent is finished projects and go ahead and hit publish.
And then we’ll add new and we’ll say Edmonds View Remodel and we’ll give that a parent and say publish. And we’ll add new again and we’ll say Eastside Luxury Spec Home. And pick finished projects and hit publish.
Now let’s come back over to our pages, our all pages, and you can see that these pages are laid out as subpages under finished projects, right? They’re sitting inside of a hierarchy now. They are subpages obviously of finished projects.
Setting “Home” Page in WordPress Settings – Static Front Page
Let’s talk about working with your WordPress reading settings. We’ll come back over and look at our site, here we are at our home page. And right now our home page is showing this one sample blog post and our home page is not the page that we created that we called home. And the reason is that WordPress starts off automatically with your home page being a blog post page because WordPress is a blogging platform and that’s the history of WordPress.
However, in the website that we are creating we actually want a page like this, a static front page, as our main home page. Fortunately, WordPress makes it easy for you to do that. Let’s come back over to our dashboard. I’m going to come down here to settings and reading and it’s a setting front page displays.
By default, front page displays your latest posts. However, we want front page to display a static page and now we’re going to pick a page we want our front page which in this case is home. And then we need to pick a posts page and in this case, it’s articles.
Note that you can’t say you won’t use a static page without actually picking a page to be static so you want to make sure you pick the page here that you want to be static. And let’s hit save changes to this. And if we come back over and look at our site again, now you can see that our page has changed here, right?
The page now says home at the top, that is the page title. And it also has that little piece of text in there. The trash has changed. Remember when I wrote this home page? It’s got that little piece of content on that. And so that’s the way the home page will work now. It’s going to display this static front page.
How the Posts Page Works
Let’s just go back to the pages and look at that. Look at all pages. We have this page called articles. I’m going to add this content to it. This is our articles page and hit update. I’m going to view the page. Notice how that doesn’t… that’s not there. It doesn’t say this is our articles page because the content of the articles page has been replaced by a list of the blog posts. That’s the way the posts page works.
None of the content that you put on your articles page is ever going to actually show on the articles page if you’ve chosen the articles page as your posts page. What’s going to show there is your posts. Okay so that’s something else done. Keep in mind.
So we’ve got a page from our front page. We’ve got a page for our posts page and we’ve looked at that posts page content. The front page content, of course, is the content of whatever page we described as our front page.
Page Order/Menu Order for Organizing Admin View
Let’s talk about page order or menu order as a mechanism for organizing your administrative view. Right now, it’s not that big a deal, right? You look at the pages here, what have we got? We’ve got 10 pages and we’re going to add 3 more pages so we’ll have 13 pages. And it’s probably not that big a deal that they are laid out like this alphabetically.
However, when you have 141 pages, it becomes a really big deal that they are laid out in a way that is logical and rational and that they aren’t just laid out in a way that is alphabetical. And so I suggest a system of organizing your pages by using page order or menu order. It’s called both things.
In this case my home page is my first page. So it’ll be the first page on the menu, right? If we look at the menu here, we got Home, About, Finished Projects, Services, Articles. We’ll put Testimonials and then Articles in that order. So home is number 1, about is number 2, finished projects is number 3. And so what we’ll do here then is we’ll… under order, we’ll give the page order for home as 1 and update. About was number 2.
Now you can use either quick edit or edit and the order is over here and update. So home, about, finished projects. We’re going to go to our quick edit and we’re going to call that number 3. And then services, we’ll call it number 4. Testimonials, we’ll call number 5 and articles, call number 6.
That didn’t seem to rearrange anything but once you refresh your page, now you’ll see that sample page is up at the top. And the reason sample page is at the top is it as a menu order of 0, right? Si nce we’re not using sample page we’re just going to leave it there in place. But sample page is the top; it’s got an order of 0.
Now home is number 1, about is number 2, finished projects is number 3, service is 4, testimonials is 5 and articles is 6. So we’re using page order here to organize our pages in a logical order. And the logic that I chose for this order is the order that they’re going to sit on our menu.
Now the same thing is true for our subpages. So if I want the West Seattle View Home to be at the top, I can say order number 1, update. And then let’s say I want East Side Luxury to be number 2 and then Edmonds View Remodel to be number 3 and hit refresh. Now you see they’ve reorganized themselves again in the order that I want them to show up in the menu.
More Complex System for Organizing the Admin View
This is a fairly simple site. But I do have a more sophisticated system. For our main pages, I use the numbers 1 through 19 generally in their menu order. And the same thing is true for subpages and sub-subpages. That is if they are the primary content of the site, I use this numbering system.
There are hidden pages like a downloads page or a thank you page that you don’t want people just to go to all by themselves but you’re going to automatically direct them to in the case of making a purchase or joining your site or something like that. In that case I give them numbers of 20 through 29.
If they’re administrative pages… you’re probably not going to see any examples of administrative pages unless you do the membership class. But there can be pages that you just want for administrative purposes. And those pages, I make 30 or 39. And then Thesis also gives you this ability to use 301 redirects to redirect a page from one place to another. And in that case, I would use the number 301.
So what that does is it organizes the pages in a nice, neat little hierarchical order inside the administrative menu. It doesn’t have any effect outside of the administrative page. Its effect is only here. Its effect isn’t any place else.
Finish Creating SubPages
We’re going to add a new page and this is going to be builder spec homes as a service. So I’m going to choose a service and I’m going to make that 1, 2. And I’m going to add new and will be custom home design. Make it a child of services and give it a menu order of 1 and then home remodel design. Parent of services, menu order 3.
If we come over and take a look at my pages, now I have all of the main pages of my site. The sample page actually, we’re going to probably use it. I’m going to consider it an administrative page and I’m going to give it a page order of 30 for the time being. And otherwise, everything is laid out in a way that is useful to me. That is, I know where these pages are. I can find them quickly.
Set Number of Pages to Display in Screen Options
If you have a whole bunch of pages, say 20 or 30 pages it can be very useful to you to go over to your screen options and for you to set the number of pages that show up. So for example, rather than 20 pages, maybe you’re going to show 50 pages so that you don’t have to scroll through. And you don’t have to keep paginating through pages to get to where you want to be.
On my site, I have screen options set up to show 360 pages. That way, I don’t ever have to come down here and click next, next, next to get to a page. All of my pages will always show up on the main administrative page. That’s a nice little setting you can set.