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How to tackle in WordPress

  • # July 9, 2013 at 7:14 pm

    Hi,

    I created this site for a client a while back http://www.jaybe.com it’s just a static site that uses some php to help edit.

    If I was to do something like this in wordpress what would be the best way? In particular the home page.

    This is for a client so it needs to be easy to edit but it will be under my full control I.e. not sold.

    I’m just currently building a site that uses custom post types with the advanced custom fields plugin and I could certainly achieve what I want using a custom post type but is this the best way? Or should this level of customisation be put in a theme options panel? Or us WP not really the best tool for a site of this nature?

    Would like to hear your views. Looking at theme options looks a bit of a nightmare having to create things programmatically as apposed to using the excellent custom post type ui plugin.

    Or is it just whatever works for me and the client?

    Just seems odd to create a custom post type for one page I.e. the home page.

    Thanks Richard

    # July 9, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    You do not need a custom post type just for a home page. The WordPress template system allows for a specific home page template.

    If you go into the WordPress admin panel, then go to Settings > Reading, there is a spot to change the Front Page display. It can either be the default “list of recent posts”, or you can set up a Static Front Page, and a Blog Page.

    For my parents store website, http://CrystalGatesCollectibles.com (always a work-in-progress), I used this functionality. I created 2 generic “Pages”, one called Welcome, and the other called “Recent News”, and set those as the two pages in the Reading settings.

    The “Welcome” page will default to use the template file “front-page.php” if it is in the template directory, instead of the usual “page.php” or “index.php” template files. This allowed me to design the landing page in a very specific way.

    The Recent News “Page” then gets overridden and becomes what we all would think of as the normal WordPress blog post listing.

    Hope this helps you along.

    note – when I say “Page”, I am referring to the built-in “Page” post type.



    On a side note about the “Advanced Custom Fields” plugin, another nice plugin to use along with that is “CPT-onomies: Using Custom Post Types as Taxonomies”. As the name describes, it allow you to turn a custom post type into a Taxonomy. This would allow, for example, a movie website (think of IMDB) to have a custom post type for “Movies” and one for “Actors”, then both can be used as a tag/taxonomy for the other.

    I will be reworking my podcasts website, RobAndDan.tv, in the near future, and we will be using both plugins for our game reviews and game videos. Individual games will have their own post type, acting as informational pages for the games themselves, but they will also act as tags for our Lets Play videos and any reviews we have for those games.

    As a more current example, I am building a website for a small motel and am using custom post types for things like Rooms, Rates & Motel Policies. I am then using the CPT-onomies plugin to make the “Rates” post type into a taxonomy for the “Rooms” post type. This way, the owners only need to adjust the information within the “1-bed room” or “2-bed room” Rate posts, rather than having to change each “Rooms” post.

    # July 9, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    If I were building that, the home page would probably just be a blank page in the backend, then each one the boxes would either be a widget, or I would pull the excerpt from the page I was going to be linking to there along with the featured image in the front-page.php file. You could also do it with the advanced custom fields and just have each one of the boxes call a custom field, both would work, really depends on which you feel makes the most sense.

    The people I work with are a bit widget crazy which is why that’s my go to solution, custom fields may make more sense from a newbie user standpoint.

    # July 10, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Thanks for the replies guys. macharborguy I think you’ve missed my point a little perhaps I didn’t explain myself properly.

    I know you don’t need a custom post type to do a custom home page. I was considering a custom post type to allow for more structured data.

    The site you linked to is a very standard style WP site with not many content areas on the home page which doesn’t pose any issues.

    Thanks for the heads up on the taxonomies plugin.

    will_wallace Thanks mate. I never thought about pulling in the excert from the particular page that is a good idea when they have pages of course.

    Never really considered widgets either for this type of thing.

    What are widgets like from a performance point of view if they just contain text?

    Finally, are theme options pages then just the domain of theme builders that sell their theme on the likes of theme forest etc?

    Thanks guys!

    # July 17, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    I’ve honestly never looked into performance hits on widget ares, but I would assume there wouldn’t be as it’s all just regular old boring php. If performance is an issue, you’re probably going to run a caching plugin anyway which negates any performance concerns.

    I add an options page to every custom theme I roll out for a client with things like address, phone number, social media urls for the business, header image and other items that will either need to be referenced frequently or could change from time to time. There’s a whole bunch of tutorials, some with videos, on how to add theme options to your theme. A quick google search should fill you in.

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