A template tag is a code that instructs WordPress to “do” or “get” something. They are used in template files to display information dynamically or otherwise customize your site. There are two types of template tags:
1. Those that output information and;
2. Those that don’t output anything (the latter is also called a “function”).
The first type is used mainly in the header and footer sections of themes to display dynamic content, such as the current date or the number of comments for a post. The second type is used throughout template files to include different functionality on a WordPress site.
Some examples of popular template tags are:
- get_header(): includes the header.php template file.
- get_footer(): includes the footer.php template file.
- wp_head(): required in the head section of all themes and provides plugin developers with a hook to insert content.
- bloginfo(‘name’): displays the name of the site set in Settings -> General.
- post_class(): adds classes to individual posts so they can be styled differently (e.g., sticky posts).
Benefits of Using Template Tags
When it comes to template tags, several benefits make them extremely useful for developers. One of the most significant benefits is that template tags can help to keep your code clean and organized. This is because template tags can modularize your code so that each section of your code is contained within its unique tag. This helps to prevent your code from becoming cluttered and makes it much easier to read and understand.
Another significant benefit of using template tags is that they can help you save time when coding. This is because you can reuse existing template tags instead of writing your custom code whenever you need a particular functionality. This can be a huge time saver, primarily if you use the same functionality repeatedly in your projects.
Finally, template tags can also make your code more portable. This is because if you use standard template tags, your code will work with any system supporting those tags. If you need to move your code to another platform or environment, you won’t have to rewrite all your template tags to work with the new system.
In conclusion, template tags can be an excellent way for developers to quickly and easily create custom layouts and website features. With these tags’ help, WordPress developers can use existing code instead of writing everything from scratch. Moreover, they are an invaluable tool for making your website look professional and attractive while providing users with a convenient way to interact with your content. All in all, template tags offer an effective solution that is easy to learn yet powerful enough for advanced web development tasks.