When you implement a hosted WordPress blog for your nonprofit, one of the first questions you might have is about Pages vs. Posts. When would you use one over the other, and why.
Social Versus Static
The biggest difference between Posts and Pages is this: Posts are social media instruments, Pages aren’t.
The WordPress Post is the tool you’ll be using within your blog to engage readers. Posts are what everyone on Twitter and Facebook are sharing. They enhance sharing and engagement with:
- Comments – Although Pages and Posts have commenting features, it’s generally a good idea to deactivate the comments on Pages. You want your readers to comment on your latest post, not your legal disclaimer.
- Sharing – There are hundreds of WordPress plugins that enable your readers to share content – quickly and easily. Most of these plugins give you an option to deactivate sharing on Pages, as shown below:
I use a few on this blog: AddThis (below each post), Simple Facebook Share Button (above each post), Tweetmeme (above each post) and WP Google Buzz (above each post). Comment systems, like DISQUS, Intense Debate and Echo embed sharing into the commenting process.
Time Versus Timeless
Posts are published in reverse chronological order on your Home Page or Blog Index Page, depending upon how you’ve configured your blog (Sticky posts will remain above your latest posts). This allows visitors to see your most recent content first, and digg for related posts within the archives.
Pages have no date and time associated with them.
Posts can also be scheduled for future publication at a specific date and time, as shown below:
RSS and Email Subscriptions
The Journey Versus The Pitstop
Posts are short, bite-sized pieces of content intended to bring your readers with you on a journey over time. For example, in January, I wrote a series over 31 days about optimizing your blog with social media (now an ebook!). This series gave me and my readers an opportunity to get to know each other – to go on a journey together. Pages, on the other hand, are pitstops my readers can visit along the way if they want to learn more about me or my services.
Children Versus Orphans
Pages allow users to create a hierarchy structure within your site, often referred to as a parent/child structure. Posts do allow for a parent / child structure, although you can do that with the Headway WordPress Theme (see “How To Create A Bootylicious WordPress Nav Bar” for more info).
Traffic Cop Versus GPS
The hierarchy feature of Pages turn site owners into traffic cops where visiters are pointed towards specific pages in relation to each other (a hierarchy. Posts, on the other hand, enable visitors to decide where they want to go via tags and categories.