If you’ve ever used WordPress to manage a site with more than two or three static pages, you’ve experienced the amazing awkwardness of the built-in method of ordering pages:
That line about “We know this is a little janky, it’ll be better in future releases” has been there for as long as I can remember. As far as I can tell, fixing it has not made it anywhere near the top of the core development team’s priority list. (I haven’t been over on the forums pestering them for it, though, so I suppose I’m not in a position to complain too much.)
Organizing pages by going back and forth between them and sticking a number in that box was more than just “a little janky.” It was ridiculously clumsy, particularly before the “Quick Edit” option got introduced.
Fortunately, enterprising plugin developers are out there to help those of us who want to use WordPress to run multi-page sites. I’ve used a couple of different plugins for this over the years, but so far pageMash is my favorite. Even though it’s only officially compatible with versions of WordPress up to 2.71, it’s worked just fine for me up to 2.8.6, without causing any conflicts.
Not only does pageMash let you rearrange pages by dragging and dropping them, but it can display many more pages on one screen than WordPress is willing to, both because of its efficient layout and because WordPress likes to show you items in groups of 15. (I understand there are ways around this if you’re geeky enough to go tinkering, but so far I haven’t been.) And it gives you a graphical representation of sub-pages (a.k.a. child pages).
What’s more, you can use pageMash to hide pages. I’m not sure whether this just invokes the “private” function or does something more, but if you don’t want your blog page to show up at all, this is an easy way to do away with it. (And you can still use the posting function to create dynamic pages using tools like Advanced Category Excluder or Blog-in-Blog.)
Where I’m Using It
Primarily on Author-izer.com, where I have a lot of static pages. Right now this site doesn’t have enough pages to need it, and the Podcast Asylum site hasn’t been converted entirely to WordPress yet. I built the FileSlinger site before discovering pageMash, and don’t really expect to add more pages to it. This is becoming a plugin I install on client sites very early in the process of setting them up, however.