WordPress Post Formats
Real quick, WordPress post formats are meta information (or ‘tags’) that can be used by themes to customize presentation of a post. You can think of post formats as a feature that allows you to present your posts in different styles.
In essence, you are creating a normal post, but the post formats feature allows you to tune said post into an aside, video, image, gallery, link etc. without doing too much work. You don’t even need to create categories – as it were in the past – to style your posts differently.
Without a doubt, the content you input for each of the formats is slightly different. We mean, a gallery post will contain a couple of pictures (or the gallery shortcode), a video post will contain a third-party or self-hosted video, a link post should have a link to an external resource and so on and so forth.
Post formats allow you to display posts in different styles depending on the effect you wish to achieve. For example, you might want your quotes to look different from your asides, your image posts different from your video posts and so on. Still, you’d be working with normal blog posts.
What are Post Formats?
If you are using a theme that supports post formats, it is possible to change the way a post is formatted or displayed, depending on which format is chosen at the time of publishing.
On the ‘edit post’ page, there is the option to select a post format when working on a post. At the moment these options can be found in a rather discrete menu box that you would be forgiven for having not noticed, or at least not taking much interest in.
Post formats can allow your WordPress blog to mimic the features found on popular social networks such as the status updates of Facebook, the image posting of sites like Tumblr, and the format of video pages on YouTube.
For example, some post formats, such as the quote and status options, do away with displaying the traditional blog post title. This means the quote itself, or the status, which can be used for doing a Facebook-style status update, is the only text from the post shown on the page.
- Standard: This displays your blog posts in the default manner, meaning it’s just an ordinary blog post without special formats applied to it.
- Video: This format allows you to display a video, usually embedded within a handy video player (á la YouTube), so your readers can simply click to play the video without leaving your site.
- Quote: Display a quotation on your blog with this post format. Often, users include the quotation along with a byline for its source.
- Audio: The Audio post format is for sharing audio files, or podcasts. Usually, Audio posts have very little text included and instead include items, such as a built-in audio player, that visitors can click and listen to audio files from.
- Gallery: This is a gallery of images in which you can click each image to access a larger version. Often these post formats don’t contain text and display only a gallery (but they may have a title).
- Link: Use this to display a quick post that provides a link that you want to share with your readers. These post formats often contain a title and sometimes a short bit of text that describes the link you’re sharing.