Strictly speaking a blog is a website but let’s differentiate. The main difference between a blog structure and website structure is the communication style. Blogs are post based structures that provide for and encourage interactive communication. Websites are page based structures that operate as a one-way noticeboards.
A WordPress blog can either be structured as a page based website or its conventional post based structure can be retained. That’s why understanding the differences between posts and pages, comprehending the SEO implications of creating a page based structure, and knowing how to use custom menus are key to decision making when selecting a theme, and setting up your WordPress.com blog.
Post based structure or page based structure?
Characteristics of pages
Static Pages sit outside the blog structure. Static pages cannot have Categories and Tags assigned to them. Pages do not appear in our RSS feeds. Most Pages do not have date stamps in their URLs. They have very little “google juice” Other bloggers rarely if ever backlink to static Pages in their published posts. Consequently, Page structured blogs have a very difficult time:
1. securing traffic;
2. securing comments;
3. securing backlinks;
4. achieving authority in their niche;
5. achieving Google PageRank.
Characteristics of posts
Posts can have Categories and Tags assigned to them. They do appear in our RSS feeds when published, edited, updated and when comments to them are approved and posted. Pages do have date stamps in their URLs. They have lots of “Google juice”. Other bloggers do backlink to Posts in their own published posts. Consequently, Post structured blogs have much better opportunities to:
1. secure traffic;
2. secure comments;
3. securing backlinks;
4. achieve authority in their niche;
5. achieve Google PageRank.
Posts are only displayed on one running page and that’s usually the front page of the blog but it can be changes to another static page here > Settings > Reading.
Other bloggers become aware of Posts via search engine results, RSS feeds, and social media and in social networks updates. They also “pass the news along” that a new posts has been published. When bloggers publish posts on related topics they link to the most relevant and authoritative posts found in the most authoritative blogs in their own niche. This is called backlinking and the number of backlinks a blog earns is one of the factors in the algorithm that determines a blog’s Google PageRank.
You can create as many static Pages and sub-pages as you like but the vast and overwhelming amount of Google juice goes to Posts because that’s the way blogs are designed and how they function. The most Google juice of all goes to the Front page of a blog, because blogs are structured in reverse chronological order, and search engines are programmed to locate fresh dynamic content on the front page.
Pages and sub-pages can be used very effectively for several purposes on a blog but choosing to create a static front page, rather than having posts displaying on your front page is a traffic quenching choice, that has a negative impact on discover-ability and SEO, as well as, holding reader attention.
Without doubt, having to click through the same blah, blah, blah on a static front page to locate your most recent posts every time they visit is an unnecessary reader annoyance. And, placing your own aesthetic appreciation above the convenience of your readers is a form of arrogance that gives rise to these two questions:
- Who do you blog for?
- What is the purpose for this blog?
If you blog for your readers and your purpose is not to sell products and/or services, and you will be publishing fresh content on a regular basis, then having your posts display on your front page will vastly improve the blog’s opportunities to attract subscribers and growing community of readers, to earn backlinks, to gain authority in the niche and to achieve a PageRank.
On the other hand, if your purpose is to sell products and/or services that you yourself provide through the blog, then you may wish to create a page structured “website” on your wordpress.com blog. If so, then please stay tuned. This post contains a brief tutorial on how to use a custom menu to create a website on a wordpress blog.
Related posts found in this blog:
Working with WordPress Pages