If you’re regularly building different types of websites, you may reach a point when the default WordPress Content Types are no longer sufficient for your projects. That’s when you need to get started using Custom Content Types on your website. Pods gives you the functionality to build Content Types, but you need to put thought and planning into what you need.
Think About Your User
The first thing to keep in mind, is that your Content Types are going to be used day-to-day by the website’s user, which may not necessarily be you. Think about your user’s workflow. This is going to be very different to a development workflow. Put yourself in the position of your user. How are they going to create content within this website? What sort of content is going to be output on the front end? The type of content that your user needs is going to determine what you create.
Sit down with a piece of paper and sketch out the user’s workflow. Figure out how they’re going to create and use your content types.
When you are creating an interface for someone else, you need to ensure that all of your terminology and labelling is clear. Avoid using developer terminology or terms that would be unfamiliar to the user. As much as possible, be precise. If you can’t think of the correct word, a thesaurus is your friend.
Think About Your Visitor
As well as thinking about your user, you need to think about the content that your website’s visitor will see on the front-end of the website. The Content Types that you create are going to be output, either through your theme or using Pods’s built-in shortcodes. Ask yourself some questions:
- What information does the visitor need?
- What information is most important?
- How will the visitor navigate the content?
- How will the visitor search the content?
Plan Your Content
With that advice in mind, start planning out your content. You’re going to need to decide the following things:
- What Custom Post Types do you need on your website? Each of these will be an individual item of content. For example, on an Ecommerce website, the Custom Post Type needed would be Products.
- How should the content be organized? You may decide that you want to create more than one Taxonomy for a Post Type. This will create a website in which the content can be queried in multiple ways. For example, for an Ecommerce website you might wish to have the non-hierarchical taxonomy Brand and the hierarchical taxonomy Product Type.
- What additional data will enrich your content? You can create Custom Fields which are meta data attached to your Content. Examples for an Ecommerce website might be price, release date, and colour.
Remember that while Taxonomies are ways to group Post Types together, Custom Fields are a mechanism for attaching individual data to your content.
Here are some examples of basic Content Types you might create for different types of websites.
An Ecommerce website:
A book review website:
|Books||Author||Number of Pages|
An events website:
Creating Your Content Types
With your website planned, you’re ready to start creating your Content Types. We’ve provided tutorials to walk you through the process for each of them.
- How to Create a Custom Post Type
- How to Create a Custom Taxonomy
- How to Extend a Post Type
- Extending a Taxonomy with Custom Fields
- How to Create Advanced Content Types
- Choosing Advanced Content Types
- How do I decide between a Custom Taxonomy or a Custom Post Type?
If your item (taxonomy or CPT) can stand alone by itself as a page of detail, it should be a CPT. If it can only exist as a group of things, it’s a Custom Taxonomy.
For instance, I don’t feel Authors is a Custom Taxonomy of Books. They’re both Custom Post Types and related to each other because they stand alone as unique items.
However, Genre is a Custom Taxonomy, because while you can define it, give it a featured image, a color on your website, a nice description and an icon, it doesn’t exist on it’s own without a list of books or authors in that Genre.