In your directory site, you may need to have different kinds of content. You may be listing cars for sale or businesses in your area, or you might even need to post events and jobs too. All these different types of content will need different fields, they will need to be searched differently, and they will need to be presented differently.
In traditional directory themes, you had a single listing type which was simply called “Listings”. In this listing type you had a list of pre-made fields which you could turn on and off based on the content you were posting. All these listings looked the same and were filtered the same. This creates confusion to both the people creating the listings, and to the users browsing the website and trying to find the content they need.
What do listing types solve?
Listing types allow you to organize these different types of content into groups. When creating a listing type, some of the main features you will be able to use are:
- Each listing type can have its own fields with ability to create custom fields
- Specific search filters, ordering filters and search forms
- Specific preview card and listing page
- Specific fields that will display in the add or edit listing pages.
- Specific pricing packages
- Have fields hidden/shown based on the package the user chooses
- Reviews with its own criteria or regular comments
- Specific categories, tags, regions or custom taxonomies
Let’s have an example
You have properties for rent and events in your site. Properties for rent have a field named “Number of rooms”, while events have a field named “Start date”. In this case, you have two different kinds of content which have fields that make sense for one kind, but not for the other.
While adding an event listing you don’t want to get asked about number of rooms, and when your users browse your site looking for a property to rent, you don’t want them to filter them by start date.
This is a great example when you should create two different listing types, Events and Properties for rent, so you can organize your content and create a better experience for yourself and your users
What is the difference between a listing type and a category
While we explained above what listing types can do, categories on the other hand are just a field, a simple filter which can be used to filter listings of a specific listing type. They don’t have any other purpose or feature other then filtering your content.