When WordPress was first released, back in 2003, it was primarily a platform for blogging. However, it has since grown far beyond just blogging and is currently the most popular Content Management System (CMS) on the Internet, powering over 14% of the “top 1 million” websites in the world. In today’s post we’re talking about Custom Post Types (CPTs) which are one of the key features that allows WordPress to be so versatile and powerful.
WordPress started with 1 content type. A post. Over the years, that was slowly expanded to encompass links, pages, even media uploads. Around Version 3.0 (Thelonious) WordPress really expanded that power with Custom Post Types (custom post types were around before 3.0, but that’s when they really started to gain momentum). Custom Post Types allow you to extend and modify the WordPress Dashboard (or “back-end”) for many applications. When combined with custom theme templates, they are a powerful combination that allow WordPress to be customized into a powerful CMS (Content Management System). Here’s what custom post types look like in the backend of WordPress:
If you are familiar with WordPress, you can see the extra post types that we added to this theme: Portfolio, Testimonials, Team Members, News and Resources. Pages and Posts are built into WordPress by default. Those already familiar with WordPress might also notice that we have hidden the links panel and moved comments and media into their own section. Custom Post Types are all about modifying the WordPress Dashboard to fit the needs of our clients. In the new post type areas, we modify the interface to fit the needs and requirements of your content. These custom interfaces allow you to easily enter and edit data, create associations, and organize the content that drives your website. Here’s an example of the interface for a property listing (a parcel of land) for a Real Estate website that we developed:
And here is how that information displays the public facing (front-end) side of the site.
As you can see, WordPress has moved far beyond blogging. It’s now a mature, growing platform that’s robust enough to handle millions of sites all around the world. What are some pages and types of content on your website that could be more easily managed and presented by utilizing WordPress Custom Post Types?