What is custom post type in WordPress? WordPress comes with only a few types of built-in content types, and the most popular ones are posts and pages. These are quite useful in most cases, but you might want something more to extend the functionalities of your website and appeal to more audiences.
Enter custom post types, which let you define pages based on your need, specifications, and preferences.
A custom post type adds functionalities that you won’t see in a regular post or page content type. For example, a page showing reviews or a portfolio is considered a custom post type.
So, wondering what is custom post type in WordPress, and how to create and manage it? 🤔 Here’s a handy guide from Themeisle. Let’s jump right in!
Creating a custom post type
With custom post types, you can turn your WordPress website into a full-fledged content management platform (CMS). 👨🔧
However, custom post types aren’t built-in in WordPress, so to create one, you’ll need plugins. You could try creating custom posts with code, but that’s a bit complicated.
What you can do instead is find the plugins that offer the functionalities you want. There are ones for ecommerce, marketing, forms, reviews, testimonials, and more! For a more in-depth guide to creating custom post types, check out our article.
Managing custom post types
After you’ve created your custom post type on WordPress, you’ll want to keep things in order to maximize your investment in the whole thing. From the user’s point of view, managing your custom post type entries (or pages) works just like managing normal pages or posts. In other words, you’ll be able to find a section for the custom post type among the other types of content you have on the site.
In the blog post shared above, we used Pods as our custom post type plugin. This plugin has several features that allow us to change and add new content, check the previews, as well as add custom taxonomies or categories to our custom post type pages. Of course, these functionalities will differ from plugin to plugin, so choose one that’s intuitive and easy to learn.
Displaying custom post types
In general, there are three ways you can display your custom post types on your WordPress website:
- 👉 Default Archive Template: WordPress has its default template for handling all types of content – normal pages, posts, and custom post types as well. This is a kind of a “fallback template,” which means that WordPress will use it each time it can’t find a dedicated template for a given custom post type. What this means in practice is that you can view your custom post type normally – like you’d view any other page – simply by navigating to that page’s address in your web browser.
- 👉 Custom Templates: This step involves creating a file in your theme’s directory that will take care of displaying the contents of a specific custom post type. WordPress will use that custom page instead of the default archive that we mentioned in the previous point. Here’s more info on how to create templates in WordPress and customize them.
- 👉 Displayed With Other Content on the Front Page: This method is more technical, but allows you to display content from your custom post type along with text, media, and elements on your home page.
Final thoughts 🧐
Understanding what is custom post type in WordPress is how you can diversify the capabilities of your site and turn it into a very useful CMS platform. To create custom post types easily, you’ll want to find the right plugins that can generate them the way you need.