List posts are ubiquitous and due to their numbers (no pun intended) they often get a bad rap. I have been disappointed to note that readers are not locating my list posts and I want to feature them on a static page in index form that will auto-update as I publish more. This post explains how I did that on my Featured Posts page by using the display posts shortcode.
Some list posts are niche specific but many contain useful blogging tips that any blog reader can benefit from employing.
Pamela Vaughan shares common misconceptions about list posts and points out that they can be a powerful part of your blogging strategy In The Top 10 Qualities of High-Quality List Posts.
The rule of thumb for creating list posts is include only high quality posts and be comprehensive.
Creating a Featured Posts Page Using The Display Posts Shortcode
The beauty of shortcodes is that you don’t need to be a coder. You decide which variations you want and type a single line. Then you click to save the post or page and the software automatically provides the list of what you specified structured the way you want it to display.
1. In Use the Display Posts Shortcode to Effectively Feature Content I shared the basics on creating list posts as another way of featuring older content. Here are examples of how you can use the Display Posts Shortcode on a Page or in a Post to:
- Specify display of a list of posts by author.
- Specify display of a list of posts by category.
- Specify display of a list of posts by title, Including the post’s excerpt after the title (and date if provided).
- Specify display of a list of posts with specific image size for displaying the featured image, if the post has one.
- Specify the number of posts to be displayed. (The Display Posts Shortcode has a limit of 100 posts displayed.)
- Specify whether posts are ordered in descending order (DESC) or ascending order (ASC).
2. In Create List Posts with the Display Posts Shortcode I shared four examples of my experimentation with the using different variations of the display post shortcode and the results that three of the shortcodes produced. Here’s the code I used in my fourth display post shortcode experiment:
3. In my fourth experiment I realized that I had more than 20 list posts so I increased the number to 25 posts. (Not the display posts shortcode has a limit of 100 posts displayed.)
Although my Featured Posts page is currently displaying a list of my list posts I can change the shortcode to display any grouping of posts I wish to in the future.
This is a text based blog so the display posts shortcode variations I used did not include thumbnail images. However, doing so is a variation that’s described in the display posts shortcode support documentation and I’m sure those with image based blogs will use that option.
Hopefully, my experimentation with the display posts shortcode will be helpful to readers who either want to
- feature links to pillar posts AKA as evergreen content in list posts;
- feature links specific posts and/or groups of related posts on index pages;
- feature brief lists of groups of related posts in text widgets.
What’s your response to these two new ideas for making older content and/or groups of related posts available to your readers?
Will you be inclined to use the display posts shortcode in list posts or in index pages in your blog?