When you’re building a WordPress website, you’re going to make the decision on whether or not to use a static front page for your WordPress website. Choosing a static front page certainly has its benefits but so too does keeping the traditional blog layout. A simple way to think of a static WordPress home page is that it’s not your blog. By default, WordPress assigns your homepage as your blog. If you don’t want your homepage to feature content that is regularly updated with every blog post, then you’re going to want a static page for your front page–also known as your homepage.
Table of Contents
- 1 Uncertain about choosing a static front page?
- 2 When to Use a WordPress Static Front Page on Your Website
- 3 When to Avoid Using a Static Front Page on your WordPress website
- 4 The Effect of Having a Static Front Page on Your WordPress Website
- 5 The Pros and Cons of Using a Static WordPress Front Page
- 6 Making the Decision on a Static WordPress Homepage
Learning WordPress will help you more fully understand the importance of the designation of your home page, the pros and cons of doing so, and the types of websites most likely to benefit from having a static front page. (And which sites won’t.)
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Uncertain about choosing a static front page?
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When to Use a WordPress Static Front Page on Your Website
Anyone can choose a static homepage for their website. It is important, however, to understand that certain businesses or website types derive a greater benefit from having a static homepage. Generally speaking, if you want to generate business directly from your website, you should choose this option. Here are a few ways different types of businesses can use the static front page option:
- Business Websites: Local businesses, eCommerce websites and service-based businesses can better showcase offerings on a static homepage.
- Creative Portfolios: Highlight your best work through a static front page portfolio. Include past work, a way to contact you, and testimonials from clients.
- Nonprofits: Explain your vision, share your message, and create a call-to-action to encourage visitors to join the cause.
If you fall into one of these categories, going static can provide you more opportunities than a blog-focused design. Because you have several focal points, a static homepage allows you to showcase the different functions and aspects of your business.
There’s no law saying you can’t still use a blog front page, but it’s important to understand what you’ll miss out on if you do.
When to Avoid Using a Static Front Page on your WordPress website
Despite many opportunities to utilize a static front page, there are times when it makes more sense to go the traditional route. Generally speaking, keeping a blog-style front page is smart when you’re creating feed-like updates.
The best website styles that benefit by keeping a blog feed format include:
- News Websites: Newspapers, television outlets, and online journalism websites.
- Blogs: If the blog is the center of your brand, you fall into this category (as opposed to if a blog is just another marketing tool).
- Showcases: Any business focused on regularly showcasing work (e.g. photographers, real estate professionals, travel agents).
Now, this isn’t to say that you have to stay in these categories. I’ve seen plenty of blogs that use a static page and several businesses using blog-style front pages.
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The Effect of Having a Static Front Page on Your WordPress Website
For those that are still scratching your heads, WPBeginner does a good job of explaining things:
A WordPress website can have a dynamic blog-like front page, or a static front page which is used to show customized content which is updated with less frequency. WordPress will default to the first option by showing all of your most recent posts on the front page. Some users prefer the second option which is also known as a “splash page” or a “custom home page”.
This feature is particularly useful for websites that want to keep a blog separate from other sections of their website or for users who want to showcase content other than blog posts on the front page of their website. It can also make the site feel less like a blog and more like a full feature website. Often this feature is used on business sites.
The Pros and Cons of Using a Static WordPress Front Page
As with any decision regarding your website, you will need to evaluate the pros and cons of that decision. As I’ve referenced above, if a blog is the center of your brand, you will likely want to avoid a static front page. Otherwise, I’ve provided a list of the pros and cons of doing so for you to consider.
The Advantages of a Static Homepage in WordPress
- You’ll be able to feature a more diverse selection of content.
- Your website will look more like a business than a blog.
- Your homepage can serve as an alternative method of navigating the contents of your website.
The Downsides of a Static WordPress Homepage
- Your returning visitors will see the same content on your homepage each time they visit. If they visit daily, then your website can begin to appear boring and out of date.
Making the Decision on a Static WordPress Homepage
You now have some clearer direction in your choice. These guidelines work well for most. But, as with everything in life, what works for most may not work for all.
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box and go beyond conventional.
“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” – George Bernard Shaw
If you have any other questions, about static front pages or WordPress in general, to contact our friendly office.