What’s the difference between pages and posts?
Your WordPress website is divided into two main sections when it comes to content: pages and posts. Each item has its own unique role in making your website “work” for visitors.
Pages are items that stay around and don’t frequently change. You can think of them as pages in a book, specifically a history book–your history. The material is more or less timeless; it doesn’t change frequently. You’d only change to update a tiny bit like you would with the new edition of a textbook.
Examples of pages are things like:
- Contact Us
- Our Mission
- Our Schedule/Hours of Operation
- Typical programs we run, or services that we offer
Posts are items that are only valid for a time, they are transient. Think of them like Post-it notes. They contain information that changes frequently or expires. Posts have dates on them so people understand how recent ( or not) the item is by the date.
Posts are best used as a news/upcoming events feed. You can then link information that is in the post to other places for people to sign up or get more information. They are a place to celebrate, to congratulate, to inform, to ask for help.
Examples of Posts:
- Save the date for the annual picnic. Sign up at this link.
- Congratulations to Tom for being named volunteer of the year.
- Our hours of operations changed on you can find full information on our schedule page
- Please read this important letter from our CEO/Pastor/Founder
Developing your Posts Feed
Each piece of news needs to have it’s own separate post. Don’t aggregate all your news into one big post. This way you can send people to specific articles or pieces of news.
The real power of posts as News Feed is when you link it to your other media. The posts can be longer and have more detailed information than is really practical in a single email, an email newsletter, or in social media like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.
With the News Feed, you have a location for that longer information, and you can put links to these posts in other forms of media. For example, a short “teaser” couple of sentences in an email/newsletter/Twitter, concluding with a “Click here for more info” that is a link back to the specific stand-alone post of that topic.
A best practice would be to use the URL of the stand-alone post page in your link (instead of the chronological-order news-feed/blog page), since by the time your reader gets to the home page, you may have made other posts, so what they are looking for won’t be on top any more.
Are there other benefits to creating a news feed?
SEO Search Engine Optimization
Google ranks site in a number of ways. One of the ways it decides if a website is relevant is that site being active. Google sees new posts being created as activity, and will therefore rank your site higher than one with no activity. This item known as ( SEO) is an important factor in people finding you online.
A news feed shows a continued commitment to communicate and to hold activities. It shows people a slice of your business’/organization’s life. It lets them have an idea of what to expect. People shop around for businesses, non-profits, churches that are up-to-date. Posts make a great first impression. As the old adage goes, “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.”
Even if an event has expired, DON’T TAKE IT DOWN! Remember it is dated; people understand that things naturally expire. With a news feed, the date-stamped posts give you the best of both worlds– as long as you keep making new posts at least every month. If your newsfeed looks old and stale (Like the latest post in May being about your Christmas sale), so does your organization/business, so keep it up! It doesn’t have to be long. A brief sentence or two will usually do.
Everyone loves a this strategy of using posts for a news feed. It greatly simplifies dated content management on your website:
- The person putting content on the site doesn’t have to think about which page of the site it goes on — they just create a new post for each piece of news, and it goes into the chronological structure of the blog/news feed.
- The person managing content never has to take old news down, only put new news up!
Are there some examples of successful news feeds?
- Faith-based organization: Kansas Oklahoma Conference of the United Church of Christ
- Author: Bryan T Clark
- Business: Mennonite Insurance Company
- Church: Pioneer Walla Walla UMC