A Blog script can not only be used to post your opinions but it can be used as a content management system for your entire website. One such script is WordPress.
A detailed overview of what WordPress is capable of is as follows:
1. Customized Template
You can completely customize the look of your website by using your own custom template. You will however, need to know XHTML, CSS and some PHP in order to do this. It is recommended that you hire a professional web designer who specializes in custom blog templates. Once your template is set up, you can update your website yourself.
You can add pages to WordPress. That is pages like About us, Contact, etc. The content is added via an easy to use interface. It is easy to setup headings and bulleted lists by just clicking on already set buttons which generate the code for you.
- Select your Text
- Click on Heading
- Your selected text will now be displayed as a heading (how this heading will be displayed will be set up in your CSS file by your web designer).
If you want to set up a category based blog, you can add unlimited sub levels. However, the recommended level is one level deep and at max two levels deep. Therefore your categories can be:
Articles (main category)
— Web Design (sub category – one level deep)
—-XHTML (sub sub category – two levels deep)
You can also choose not to add any categories. In this case, the default category (Uncategorized) will be used. You can then show the posts based on a time line. They can be archived according to the day, months or years.
- December, 2005
- January, 2006
- February, 2006
- And so on…
This is what your blog is really about. The content! These can be articles, opinions, reviews, etc. Posts like pages are also added via an easy to use interface. They are then dynamically shown in your template design. Posts can be assigned to categories or as explained in ‘Archives’ above.
Interactivity is key to a Blog. You can turn comments on, off and on moderation. The latter is recommended.
Trackbacks are like comments, except they are posted at the site of the person making the comment. Generally these are longer articles related to your post. A snippet/teaser will be displayed in your comments with a link to the full article.
You can use the inbuilt Link Manager to exchange links with other blogs and websites as well as add useful resources.
9. Search Function
What use is a blog you cannot search through? WordPress has a built in search function which searches through posts.
10. RSS Feed
Feeds are read by programs called ‘FeedReaders’. You just need to add the feed URL for a blog to your FeedReader which then checks that blog for updated content. As soon as a blog has a new article, it is downloaded and displayed by the Feedreader. This way you do not have to visit all your blog websites to check up on new content.
WordPress has its own RSS Feed option. You can add RSS feed for your entire website as well as for individual articles for their updated comments.
These are tools which enhance the functionality of WordPress. There are lots of third party plugins available, each with their own function. Some of these are follows:
- Adsense Plugin: Easily add and save various Google AdSense codes. You can save different codes for the various sizes available. To add them to your posts/pages you just need to pick which one you want to add from a drop down.
- Add Meta Tags: Add custom keywords and description to your posts and pages. Set defaults for each as well.
- External Links: Automatically open external links in a new window.
- Page Navigation: Use page numbers instead of the default WordPress navigation which uses Next/Previous Links.
- Search: Search through the entire website instead of just posts.
- Smart Update Pinger: WordPress automatically announces your website to Ping-o-matic every time you publish a post. This plugin makes sure that is done only when the article is first published and not every time it is edited.
- Backup: Make a back up of your database from within WordPress admin. This is a default WordPress plugin and comes with the installation.
- No of Posts/Page: By default you can set only one number and that holds true for your categories as well as search results. This plugin lets you set a different number of posts per page for each of these.
- Polls: You can add polls to your blog.
- Stats: Different plugins that show the number of post views and the current online users.
As you can see, WordPress offers lots of features that can not only help you put up a blog and interact with your visitors, but it also lets you manage your complete website yourself.