What is a custom post type?
WordPress makes publishing web pages and blog posts easy but sometimes you want to publish content that’s specific to your website.
I wanted to post projects I’ve been working on, similar to how I post blog posts like this one, but I don’t want that content to be mixed in with my blog. I want an entirely different archive of my projects at a separate URL.
To accomplish this, I’ll register a custom post type called “Project”
Read about custom post types on the WordPress Developer Resources website.
I also want the projects to be sortable by my role in the project like “volunteer” so I’ll add a custom taxonomy called “Role” and associate it with projects.
You might be familiar with categories and tags, the default taxonomies associated with posts. Just like you’re not limited to the default post types, you’re also free to add your own taxonomies.
Read about taxonomies on WordPress.org
Registering custom content types
In the past, I’ve written code to register post types and taxonomies in a custom plugin but now I use Custom Post Type UI.
Custom Post Type UI is an essential plugin that makes managing custom content types easy.
In just a few clicks, I added a Project post type and a Role taxonomy, changed a few options and I was set.
Now I can add projects from wp admin and set roles on them. I can also visit the projects archive at
/projects and sort by role at
Adding Custom Fields
Before I move on to templates, I want to add a couple of custom fields for projects.
Custom fields are a great way to add options to your custom content types that might be different for each one. I’ll use them to specify a color and the alignment for each project.
Read about custom fields on WordPress.org
ACF is another essential plugin. It makes it easy to register all sorts of custom fields and associate them with content types.
Designing the projects page
I built the project components on CodePen so I could make changes easily before migrating them in to WordPress.
Read more about redesigning my site
Creating custom WordPress theme templates to display projects and roles
To finish everything up, I added templates to my child theme that would display projects correctly on the project and role archive pages, single project pages, and search results. Then, I copied my components from CodePen in to the templates. Now, anywhere a project is displayed on the site, it will be formatted correctly on a blue background.
Read more about the WordPress theme API and template hierarchy on the WordPress Developer Resources site.