When to use a "page" and when to use a "post"

One of the greatest areas of confusion that people come across when using WordPress for the first time is the difference between a page and a post. This is particularly so for people who are using their WordPress site for their school website. The difficulty arises through a misunderstanding of the language that WordPress uses in that posts and pages have quite different functions.

“We need a page for letters”

No, actually, you don’t.

Remember that your WordPress site is still a blog even if it is being used as a website and the difference between a page and a post is crucial to understand if you are to make the most of this most powerful of publishing platforms.

Posts

  • Each post is a diarised entry with a date and publishing time attached;
  • Each post can be tagged or categorised as to its content or purpose;
  • Each post has it’s own unique URL (web address) so it can be linked to directly;

All children's work, therefore, will always be published as a post. If you want to group posts together you use tags, for example, "poetry", "science", "The Tudors", "100 word challenge" etc

Pages

  • A page is a static web page which, if you add to it, simply increases the length of the page;
  • A page cannot easily be split up into separate posts;
  • You cannot categorise or tag pages;
  • The purpose of a page is to provide a space for static reference material that rarely changes.

It follows then, that a school newsletter should be added to the blog as a POST and NOTa page. Each newsletter should be tagged with a consistent tag (I suggest “Newsletter”). Provided that you do this then the tag “newsletter” will appear in the tag cloud of your blog. Moreover, once tagged correctly you can use the unique URL of the newsletter tag to add this as a custom menu item on your blogsite. Thus, when you click “Newsletters” on the menu you are NOT taken to a “page” of newsletters, but you are instead looking at a list of blogposts tagged “Newsletter”.

In other words, the tag is filtering your view of the blog.

When to use a page

If you have followed so far then you should realise that a page should only be used for reference purposes, for example:

  • A statement of ethos and values
  • Policies
  • Statutory information such as pupil premium reports
  • Holiday dates

The confusion arises, I think about the term, “webpage”. Technically you are quite correct in saying that each blogpost is a unique webpage. However, what WordPress means by the word “page” is quite different.

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