Setting Up the Homepage and Other Essential Blog Pages


At this point, you’re ready to put pen to paper (well, fingers to keys) and start creating some actual content for your blog. We’re not talking about blog posts quite yet, though. First, you’ve got to set up the core blog pages.

This is chapter 6 of a bigger guide on how to start a successful blog.

These are the static pages that will always be there no matter what. And while they aren’t blog posts, they do provide your readers with important information about you and your site.

Start with your homepage

“A homepage? I’m writing a blog. Won’t my homepage just display my latest posts?”

Yes, it will, here’s what that usually looks like:

Example of a homepage displaying latest posts:

That being said, the default blog archive listing homepage does kind of…suck. You can read this post for all the reasons and examples why you’re usually better off going with a dedicated homepage.

Creating a dedicated homepage as the first one among your blog pages lets you:

✅ Control what first-time visitors see, rather than leaving it up to fate based on what you’ve published last.

✅ Direct visitors to your most important content right away.

✅ Build an email list or otherwise promote an offer.

Plus – you can still display your latest posts on your homepage – just make it a part rather than the whole.

So what should you put on your homepage? While there might always be something specific to your site, these are some core details to consider:

Homepage elements.

A clear headline that describes your blog in one or two sentences

A little bit about you and why visitors should care

Links to your absolute best content and your other blog pages

Some of your latest posts

An email opt-in, if you want to grow an email list

Smart Passive Income is a great example of how to do it right

Home

Smart Passive Income homepage.

* Screenshot from Smart Passive Income.

Not sure how to create a homepage? You generally have two options:

Some themes, like Neve, come with a dedicated homepage template that you can easily edit to make your own.

WordPress page builders make it easy to create your own custom page using drag and drop.

Create the other necessary blog pages

Once you check off your homepage, you can move onto the other blog pages. These can usually be a bit simpler – regular pages using the normal text editor should be fine enough.

Again, here are some necessities to get you started, though you might also want to add other pages that are specific to your niche:

🧐 About – this one can get a little personal. Tell people about both the blog and your own background so they know what you’re all about. Give our about page a look for some inspiration.

🏁 Start here – this page has become pretty common for blogs nowadays. It gives you another chance to direct readers towards your most popular content. See a good example here. Some bloggers will even combine the About and Start Here pages into one single page, which is also a solid approach.

🙋‍♂️ Contact – Contact Form 7 will handle the contact form itself for you. However, to make your contact page complete, you still have to add some instructions, guidelines, and info about your site or business. Check out our contact page for inspiration.

✍️ Blog – if you create a static homepage, you’ll need to create a separate page to display the list of your most recent blog posts. Just create a page called Blog and make it display your latest posts by going to Settings → Reading.

Blog page.

⚖️ Legal pages – terms of service, privacy policy, affiliate program disclosures … all that legal mumbo-jumbo. It’s not sexy, but it’s important. You can see our ever-so-exciting privacy policy here.

🤝 Hire me – while not every blogger will need this one, a good “hire me” page can be the first method of monetizing your blog (we’ll talk about more options in the subsequent chapters). The idea behind this page is pretty straightforward – it’s a page where you get to showcase your services and tell people why they might want to buy them. Here’s an example by Karol.

Once you get your pages all set up, you’re ready to start blogging!

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