Front page customization in TypePad versus WordPress
One area that many bloggers do not always pay attention to is the front or home page. The ability to customize your home page is one of the most important factors in making your blog attractive and thus keeping visitors on your site. How does wordpress,com compare to typepad.com when it comes to front page customization?
Your front page is YOU
Obviously, not all visitors enter your blog through the home page, but the home page is what you use in order to market and advertise your blog. That’s why it is so important. So what is the full potential of customization in TypePad versus WordPress?
As mentioned in a previous post, WordPress’ pages are far ahead of TypePad’s pages. Besides that, in many WordPress themes, the pages make up the navigation bar, creating easy access to the more typical website features like an About page or a Contact form. This navigation bar feature does not exist in Typepad.
Static front page
A typical blog front page is simply a list of the most recent posts. Sometimes you prefer to have a static front page to welcome your visitors or to promote a certain. With a static front page this is possible. Both TypePad and WordPress offer this feature. But WordPress offers more. Thanks to the navigation bar, you can have a tab designated as “Posts” or maybe “Blog”, listing your posts. With this in plain sight on your navigation bar it is easy to find your posts. This blog shows you how to do it. In TypePad you would have to click a Category link in the sidebar or an Archive link to bring up your posts.
What WordPress does not have, but what TypePad has is sticky posts, the ability to pin posts at the top of your posts list. Instead of having a static page in front, or a text widget on top in your sidebar, sometimes you simply prefer a sticky post. In TypePad this is possible, in WordPress not.
If a sticky post is not enough, in TypePad you can also “filter” the categories in your posts lists, and thus include only one or multiple categories. I’m not sure how useful this is, but sometimes I have posts in a miscellaneous category that I don’t want to display openly, but which I still want to have in my blog.
Order of posts
The default order of posts is descending, that is, the newest posts always appear on top. In TypePad you can reverse this, and have the oldest posts first. This can be very useful if your blog is a step by step tutorial or book chapters, such that people can start reading from the top and dwn, just like a real book.
Looking back at the page tabs, they can effectively be designed to link to a certain category or tag, or for that matter, link to an external page. That makes it very easy to link your blog to your website, or to a different website for that matter, although THAT would be a violation of TOS, if it is an totally unrelated website.
All WordPress themes have navigation links on the front page that link to “older posts.” (or “older posts” and “newer posts” and the older posts page). In TypePad you can turn this feature off, not sure why this would be useful, but anyway… In addition, the text itself can be customized, again, not sure why this is useful or why you would want it to say anything else than “older” or “newer”, but anyway…
Number of posts
This is so trivial that I almost forgot it. Both platforms of course offer the ability to limit the number of posts that appear on your front page.
Both TypePad and WordPress offer different forms of customization, and it’s near impossible to say that one is better than the other. It depends on what you want to do with your blog. In summary a blog using many pages will fair better in WordPress than in TypePad.
TypePad versus WordPress: TypePad – 1, WordPress – 1.