ABC’s of WordPress with Worship Times: Pages, part 2

Yesterday we re-introduced you to Pages, and how to enter basic content on your WordPress site. Today we will look at the additional tools you can use to build beautiful pages throughout your site.

Your page content and format is the main way you will distinguish your pages from others on the internet, and even others within your website.

Extra Tools:

WordPress has some additional tools built into their sites, as well as Worship Times plug-ins that can help you create a great page.

With the ‘Add Media’ tool, you can not only add individual pictures, picture galleries, video or pdf documents from your Media Library, but upload pictures from your computer, and more. You can add event lists from the Event Manager, and embed videos, calendars and social media content directly from other websites and platforms:

Other tools are available to help you add forms and picture sliders you have created in your site as well as maps, location addresses and office hours. Explore these tools, and see all the things they can do as you make your pages unique and welcoming to your website visitors.

Helpful Hint: We recommend adding and editing your text content before adding in media, forms, maps, etc., for ease of editing.

Visual vs. Text

You may notice as you’re editing that you are editing in the Visual editor of the content box:

What is the text editor, and do you need to worry about it? The text editor displays code that assists in building your page. You will almost never need to look at or worry about that tab in your content box. BUT, you might accidentally click on it and see a bunch of code. You can always click back over to the Visual tab, and see the view you are used to.

One more note on the content box: Because the fonts and font styles are unique to your theme, the layout of the content box will not look exactly like the actual page. If you look at the actual page, and want to move text or pictures, or change headers size or styles, you can always go back into the page’s editor and make those changes quickly.

Screen Options

You will notice that there are other boxes with options for your page. For most pages, you will not need to do anything with these options, but we will introduce you to them briefly. If you can’t see some of the available tools, you can find them in the screen options for the editing section, and choose which sections you want to see or hide:

Page Attributes:

There are two main options within Page Attributes that you will use. Parent pages indicate whether the page you are creating is a “child” page to another page in the site. For instance, you might have a main ministry page, and list pages for specific ministries as child pages.

Example: “About Us” would be a parent page. “Our Staff” would be a child page of “About Us”

Templates determine the type of page that will appear to your site’s visitors. You can create blog, blog archive and landing pages as well as the typical pages that will make up most of your site’s content. The best way to see what each template looks like is to test them out.

Page Layout:

With the page layout settings, you can easily change the look of a page. For most themes, the options are a right sidebar, a left sidebar or no sidebar. Some themes have more layout options. You can use these options as it makes sense in different parts of your site.

Featured Image:

Featured images can be added to pages you intend to use as featured pages in a widget section on your home page, landing page or in a sidebar.

Yoast SEO:

SEO, “search engine optimization,” is how your site and individual pages and posts within your site show up in search engines. We will address this further in a future post, but we encourage you to spend some time learning about SEO, and how this plug-in can optimize your site’s search appearances. There are some great posts on SEO on the internet, and you can explore the Yoast plug-in on your own to discover some of its tools, as well.

 

Next Steps:

Have fun! If you haven’t spent much time exploring the tools in your WordPress Pages section, try them out! Create a test page, and play around with adding different types of content, editing, different headers, page templates and layouts. Plot out a potential content layout, and enjoy the creative options.

 

 

*Most blogs on WordPress-based sites utilize ‘Posts’ rather than ‘Pages.’ Look for future information on Posts, why you use them to build a blog, and other uses for Posts.

ABC’s of WordPress with Worship Times: Pages, part 1

Periodic refreshers are helpful from time to time. These how-to can be a help to remind, encourage and instruct WordPress users as they work on their sites.

Pages

Pages are the basic building blocks of your WordPress site. Unless your site’s overall focus is a blog*, most of your content will be contained on pages.

This displays what you see when you add a new page (labels are courtesy of Worship Times):

Page Title:

You can change this later, but the original page title gets incorporated into the page url (web address), so if this is a page for an annual event, like Vacation Bible School, you might consider naming it the more general name, ‘Vacation Bible School,’ rather than ‘Vacation Bible School 2017.’

Once you publish your page, the permalink url will appear under this title bar:

Content Box:

The content box has several parts. The editor or main box is where content is added. This includes text, pictures, forms, maps, etc. The tool bars above the editor or content box help you add content.

 

Main tool bar:

When you first log in to your WordPress site, and open a page (or post*) you will likely see only the top line of the main tool bar. You can make the second line visible by clicking on the Toolbar Toggle option.

You will notice most of the tools are similar to a basic word processing program. You do not have the option of choosing exact font size, but the drop-down menu in the upper left of the tool bar does allow you to choose whether your text is Paragraph, or one of the Heading sizes and styles built into your particular WordPress theme. This is both to streamline your choices, and to help you create a web site that is easy on the eye, without a mishmash of fonts and font sizes.

Another unique WordPress tool is the quotation option – where you can highlight a section of text within your page by selecting it and choosing the quotation option. This will set apart the selected text from the rest of your text, often with indentation and a separate font style.

You can add links within your pages by selecting the link text and choosing the little chain link icon, and entering the url into the address bar:

You can also select the gear on the right of the url box to choose more options, including linking to other pages within your site:

You can learn what each of the other tools in the tool bar are by scrolling over them with your cursor. We encourage you to  explore the different headings and tools to discover what each of them can accomplish.

Preview, Publish and Update

The publishing box, located in the upper right corner of your page editor has helpful tools for you to know about, and one very important function that you will use on every page you create:

Regarding the appearance of your page, you can preview your newly created page (this will open a new window – to continue to edit, go back to the original tab or window), or any future edits before you publish your page, using the ‘Preview’ option, which will open a new tab or window with a page preview. You can then simply close that window or tab when you are done with the preview, and continue working in the editing section of your original window or tab.

When you are ready to publish, you will need to click on the ‘Publish’ button (the text will change to ‘Update’ once you have published the page) to make it live on your website.

Note: Simply publishing your page will not automatically add it to your site’s menu. If you want the page to appear on your site’s menu, you will need to go to your menu options under ‘Appearance’ in the main WordPress Dashboard.

There are a few other tools within the publishing box that are not used as often, such as Visibility – whether your page is public, private (only people who can log in to your website can see it), or password-protected, publishing schedule (can set it to publish in the future), and some other information about the page status and search engine optimization (SEO).

Now you have the tools to publish a basic page. Tomorrow we’ll cover more important tools offered in WordPress Pages to create a unique and welcoming website.

 

*Most blogs on WordPress-based sites utilize ‘Posts’ rather than ‘Pages.’ Look for future information on Posts, why you use them to build a blog, and other uses for Posts.

New Feature: Instagram Gallery

Instagram is becoming more and more popular as a social media platform for organizations as well as individuals. Storytelling through images is both ancient and brand new.

In ancient times when few people were literate, word pictures created through oral storytelling kept the story of Jesus alive. But visual arts were also central to the practice and passing on of our Christian tradition, from wall paintings to stained glass to frescoes to illumination to iconography.

Some traditions stripped away visual media, favoring the word as they centered Word and Sacrament. At the same time the printing press allowed the printed word to get to everyone, which encouraged literacy. Words became the central means of transmitting the tradition.

But people haven’t changed all that much. We learn and absorb stories in different ways, so words alone are not enough. Even the most well-read among us can appreciate pictures, sculptures, movies and memes. It is no wonder that Instagram and Snapchat are growing so quickly, and that some of the most popular posts on Facebook are ones with pictures or videos.

Pictures are a quick way to tell a bigger story, which is why we encourage our members to have pictures on their websites that communicate who they are, and share the stories of their ministries. We have a new tool to help you do just that.

Our new feature added the ability to put an Instagram gallery directly on your Worship Times site. We know many currently have Instagram accounts, and would love to easily share those pictures to your websites. For those of you considering adding an Instagram account for your ministry, this new feature may help in the decision

Check out how easy it is to add an Instagram gallery: