Intro page for WordPress

The need

We know that WordPress is no longer just blogging software but used in building as full-fledged website as well. Now some websites require an intro page, a page where there is usually some animated stuff or a video to give a glimpse of what the whole website is all about and nothing else. Apart from the video and animation, the intro page also has a link saying “Skip Intro” and clicking on it takes the user to main home page of the website.

The problem

WordPress site if installed in the root of the server gives a stubborn issue of not allowing any other homepage other than WordPress index to be used. So when we try to upload an index.html file as intro page assuming .html extension is given priority than .php extension and it will load first (which is true in most cases and also can be altered using .htaccess) then we can have a skip link to index.php, everything sounds good but it simply does not work.  I also found many other solutions in internet which did not worked out well, so here I am posting my own workout which gives WordPress an intro page just like any other static websites can have.

The solution

Step 1. Create your intro page in HTML and keep hyperlink to the “Skip Intro” page as: http://www.your-web-site-domain-name-here.com/?p=0

Step 2. Look at your WordPress theme files and see if your theme files have template files for pages like contact us page, archive page etc. New WordPress themes carry separate template for such pages which can be selected while posting a new page. Just pick any of these templates file and copy it somewhere. First rename this file as intro template (or any name you like) then open it in any code editor and delete all the codes of this file.  Also open your intro page in code editor and copy all the code of intro page and paste it in intro template. Save it and upload it to your theme directory. Additionally if you want, instead of deleting all codes from WordPress intro template, you can leave this code “ <?php the_content(); ?>” (and delete everything else) and then you can put all the intro page HTML code from the WordPress compose page itself! This also allows future editing of intro page from WordPress dashboard possible. But I prefer the hard coding way, because the intro page loads faster that way and in case database server goes down, the intro page will not get affected.

Step 3. Create a new page, name it intro page and from the right column, select your intro template as the template for this page. No need to type anything for the body of this page, just publish it. I would also like to point out here that you should use Menus option from your admin dashboard to create menu for your site if your theme supports it just because you can simply avoid this new intro page from showing in the menu of your WordPress site. Anyway it is very much possible to hide any particular page from WordPress navigation menu.

Step 4. Go to wp-admin > Settings> Reading. And for option called “Front page displays”

select A static page and select your intro page from drop down list.

Done!

Here is an example site built using WordPress and having intro page: blotlawfirm.com

Mohd. Hashim Khan

I work as a freelance web designer and developer and enjoys fiddling with machines and electronics stuff. I am also working as a part time computer teacher at Aligarh Muslim University. I share my knowledge on various topics here so that others can make use of it and take benefit from my experiences.

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