What is the difference between a Post and Page? It’s one of the most common questions I get while building a WordPress site for a business owner. Let’s explore the differences (and similarities), and when you might use one or the other.
What are Posts?
A Post is often time-sensitive in nature. Posts are listed in reverse chronological order (newest at the top) and typically have tags and categories associated with them. Posts are what elevate a regular website to a blog. You should think of a blog like a public diary or journal, and each Post represents a new entry in that journal. For example, company news is often represented as a blog, since it matters how new the information is, but it’s helpful to have access to old updates.
On the other hand, some blogs are made up of evergreen material about the same or related topics, where the tagging and categorization is more important than the publish date. This is true of this blog, for example, although I have posted company news updates (example) and current events (example) in the past.
A Post’s author is also more important to Posts than Pages, due to the diary-like nature of the content. Some blogs are made up of multiple authors that post about various topics — you can imagine online magazines and news organizations find authorship very important.
What are Pages?
A Page in WordPress is like a page on any other website. It displays static information on a particular topic. Pages are evergreen, in that the information on them typically does not change over time. An “About Us” page displays information about the owner of the website, for example, and that information is not likely to need updating. Pages are often organized hierarchically, in parent-child relationships (unlike Posts, which are organized by topic). A Page’s author is typically irrelevant.
Why not delete old Posts if they’re no longer relevant?
It may be tempting to create a Page for information that may change or become outdated, update it as necessary, then delete it when it’s no longer relevant, but there are a number of things you lose when you do that. You wouldn’t tear out old pages of your diary as time goes on; it’s useful to know where you came from in understanding where you are now. The same is true on your website. Sometimes, the information your visitors are trying to find is historical in nature; they don’t want to know what’s true now, they want to know what was true in the past. In general, you should be hesitant to delete content from your site.
If information becomes outdated and you don’t want your visitors to be confused or given the wrong idea, it is very common and encouraged to edit an old Post to add an update to the top, stating that the information has changed with a link to direct users (and search engines) to the new information in a newer Post. You may also
strike out individual sentences and words to indicate that the information is no longer true (when you do this, WordPress actually timestamps the strike out and embeds that data into the code of the page, so that search engines know when the information became incorrect).
When to use one over the other
First of all, if your company website does not have a blog or if you don’t have a clear blog strategy, then you should seriously consider creating one. According to HubSpot, the #1 method for increasing traffic to your website is blogging.
If you’re not prepared to begin a greater content marketing strategy and if the information you’re trying to present is a current event, news item, update, press release, or similar, then you should probably make it a Post. If SEO is important to you (and it should be — see above chart), then you should also consider how important the new content is compared to your other Pages. Typically, Pages should be more authoritative than Posts.
|Organized by||Categories, tags, date||Hierarchical|
|SEO||Favors most recent||Favors over Posts|