Blog Tip: Adding Pages to Enhance your Blog – Part 1


Why would you want to add pages to your blog? Well, maybe you want to add an “About Me” page, or a “Books I’m Reading” page or a “Our Travels” page. Or maybe you are a business, like a library and you want to add an “Events” page or a “Location” page or “Help” or “Our Schedule” or any number of things.

If you add them to your blog, they get mixed in with everything else. If you try to add them to your sidebar, you don’t really have much room or many options. This way, you can have a list at the top of your blog and on your sidebar with “Events”, “Location”, “Schedule”, “About Us”, “Help”, etc. (NOTE: Blogger doesn’t support adding pages, but there are ways to simulate pages that I explain below).

WORDPRESS: The first page you might add to your blog and the most common, is the “About Me” page. I cannot remember now, but I think that wordpress might already have one added for you, although you need to go edit it to add your information. See instructions below for editing or adding a page.

To add a new page, such as “Books I am reading”, you would go to your wp-admin (dashboard) and choose “Manage” and then “Pages”. You will see a list of all the pages you have so far and here you can view, edit or delete them. You could choose to edit your “About Me” page to add content, or to change the title or whatever you would like to do. It is just like creating or editing a post.

Or you can choose “Create new Page” which will take you to a page that looks like the page you get when you want to write a new post. You can give the new page a title (such as “Books I am Reading”) and can write whatever you want to appear on that page. NOTE: You can also go to Write—->Pages to create a new page.

When you publish it, you will see at the top of your blog, a new tab that says “Books I am Reading”. If you click on that tab, you will see your new page. Each theme is a little different but pretty much all of them do this.

You can also add a widget to your sidebar that lists your pages. If you go to Presentation—->Widgets, you can drag and drop the Pages widget into your sidebar and it will give you a list of your pages in your sidebar.

NOTE: If you are using the default sidebar(s) with your blog, dropping a new widget on it will make your default sidebar go away so you will have to set it up yourself by dragging and dropping the widgets on it that you had before. This lets you customize your sidebars pretty easily, but if you don’t want to mess with it yet, don’t add the widget. Your pages will appear at the top of your theme anyway.

Check it out on this blog. You can see the pages listed across the top of my blog and the list of pages in the left sidebar of my blog. You can also see that there are more pages listed in the sidebar than at the top. That is because these are sub-pages that are under “Our Travels”. You can see how they are indented under their main page. In Part 2 of this article I will explain sub-pages and how to add them.

Another way to add pages that are not on your blog is to make a list of links under your Blogroll to those pages. This is one place where I don’t understand WordPress. They don’t have a links widget where you can just add a list of links and name it “ACPL Branches” or “Other Library Sites” or whatever. You have the blogroll and that is it. You can, however, make a new page and call it Information or ACPL Branches, etc. and add the links there.

GOOGLE BLOGGER: Google Blogger doesn’t allow multiple pages, which really surprises me. I really did not realize that until I started writing about this. If you really want to have multiple pages (and especially sub-pages, which I will cover in my Part 2 of this article), you may want to consider moving to WordPress.

Each blog engine has its advantages and disadvantages (see my 3-part review of blog engines) but if this is really important and this workaround doesn’t suit your needs, moving to WordPress.com is an option. The nice thing about going from Blogger to WordPress.com is that WordPress.com has a nice Import feature that lets you easily move all your Blogger posts into your new WordPress blog. Unfortunately, Blogger doesn’t have that for moving from WordPress, although there are tools to let you do it.

Anyway, here is something you can do in Blogger to create ‘Pages’.

Go to Settings—->Archiving—–>Enable post pages—–>Yes—>Save. Then just create a post to create a new page. You can call it whatever you want. Backdate it so that it does not appear on the Main page. It will still be in your blog, but as the first post if you backdate it far enough. See the picture for where you change the date. It is in the lower right hand corner. The picture is a picture of the page post being created. Click on the picture to see it full-sized.

blogger-post-as-page.png

Now you need to get the permanent link for this post. If you go to Posting—->Edit Posts and select “Oldest” on the top right of the list of posts, you will see your new post as the first (oldest) post in your list. Click on View for that post and it will take you to the post. Now copy the URL (link) to that post (in the text box at the top of your browser). You will use it to paste into the page element you create below as the link to your ‘page’.

Now go to Template—->Page Element and add a Link List element to your sidebar. You can call it something like “Pages” and for the link, add the URL to the post you just created and name it whatever you want, like “About Me”. As you add page posts and links, you will get a list that looks similar to a Pages sidebar widget in WordPress (although it will not list each page across the top like WordPress).

One thing you will note if you use the Archives page element in your sidebar, is that it will show up there. I added my Google Blogger “About Me” post by just changing the year to 2001 instead of 2007. You will see in my archives list that I have 2001/November listed with my About Me post. If you pick some date for all your new ‘pages’ (like 1/1/2000), they will just all fall under that which is best. If you pick random dates then you will have a whole bunch of different dates show up in your Archive list.

If you look at my Google Blogger blog Along the Path to 2.0, you can see this in action. The first ‘page’ on my list is actually a blog post. The second ‘page’ on my page list is a link to a page on this (my WordPress) blog. That is another way to add pages. As an example, if you have a blog and a website, you can link to information on a page on the website. If you already have an events or location or about page or home page you can link to it from your blog under your Pages list (or whatever you choose to call it, maybe Information or whatever makes sense).

In Part 2 of this article I will explain sub-pages and how to add and use them.

~Susan Mellott

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