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      WordPress Posts: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

      Posts are one of the two main content types in WordPress, so it’s crucial to understand how they work. Along with pages, posts are your primary vehicle for creating content and sharing it with your visitors. This holds true even if you aren’t building a blog.

      In this beginner’s guide, we’ll explain what WordPress posts are and how they can be used. Then we’ll show you how to create, organize, and manage them. Finally, we’ll wrap up with a list of formatting tips to help you improve your posts. There’s a lot to cover, so let’s jump in!

      An Introduction to WordPress Posts

      top posts widget in WordPress

      Posts are an inherent part of any WordPress website’s blog.

      In WordPress, there are two main formats for creating content. The first is your pages, which are primarily static and will likely form the structure of your website. Typical examples include a site’s Home page, About page, Contact page, and so on.

      WordPress posts are similar in a lot of ways. You use the same editor to create them, and they can include text, media, and much more. However, they’re designed for more timely content. This is why they are so useful for blogs. They also work well for updates, news articles, and other types of new content published on a regular basis.

      Typically, posts are dated and listed in chronological order, and they’re organized using a system of categories and tags (which we’ll discuss soon). By default, the front page of your WordPress site will be a list of your latest posts, although you can change that static page if you’d like.

      You’ll find that posts are a versatile content type, capable of doing a lot on your site. What’s more, they’re easy to create and manage. Let’s go over the basics now.

      How to Manage Posts in WordPress (In 3 Simple Steps)

      Throughout the next few sections, we’ll discuss how to create posts, organize them, and manage them on your WordPress site. You’ll first need to log in to your dashboard before proceeding to the first step.

      Step 1: Create Your First Post

      To create a post in WordPress, navigate to Posts > Add New in your dashboard. You’ll find the WordPress editor, where you can design your post:

      WordPress create a new post

      Note that as of WordPress 5.0, the default editor is the Block Editor. Your screen may look a bit different if you’re using an outdated version of the Content Management System (CMS) or the Classic Editor plugin.

      You can add text by clicking in the text field (set the Paragraph block by default). When you add your text, a toolbar menu will appear along the top of the block with your standard formatting options:

      adding blocks of text in the WordPress post editor

      You can also select the Add Block button (the + icon) to insert other blocks, such as Heading, Image, and so on:

      Choose a block for your WordPress post

      If you want to rearrange the order of your content, you can simply drag and drop the blocks to place them in your preferred order.

      To the right, you’ll find a panel of settings and options, including Featured Image. Here, you can upload an image that will be used as the header for this particular post.

      At the top-right of the screen, you’ll notice settings for saving and publishing your post. You can save your post as a draft to work on later, schedule it to go live at a later time, or hit the Publish button:

      Publish your WordPress post

      In addition, you can use the Preview button to see what your post will look like on the front end of your site. It is always recommended to preview your post before you publish, so you can rapidly identify elements that need changing before it goes live.

      That’s the basics of creating and editing your WordPress posts. However, you’ll also want to make sure they’re neatly organized.

      Step 2: Organize Your Posts With Categories and Tags

      If you intend on publishing a lot of posts — for example, if you’re creating a blog or news site — you’ll want to keep them organized. If you don’t, both you and your readers may have a hard time sorting through the backlogs to find specific entries or topics of interest.

      WordPress provides two main features for organizing posts: categories and tags. Both can be added to a post on the editing screen:

      edit categories and tags in the WordPress post editor

      Assigning categories and tags to your posts is a way to sort them. Categories are generally high-level descriptors of a post’s topic. For example, if you run a health blog, you might have categories called “nutrition” and “fitness.”

      Tags, on the other hand, are words or short phrases that describe a particular post’s subject in more detail. If you write a post about how to start a running habit for your health blog, you might assign it tags such as “cardio exercise” and “running tips.”

      The biggest difference? Categories can be hierarchical, and tags cannot.

      It’s worth noting that you can see all of the categories and tags you’ve been creating by navigating to either Posts > Categories or Posts > Tags, respectively. In those screens, you can set up and optimize these elements before you ever use them in a post:

      edit categories for WordPress posts

      You should use categories and tags in a way that makes sense to you and your readers, although there are a few best practices to keep in mind. In general, it’s smart to stick with a handful of categories for your site and assign only one to each post. Then, each post can receive a handful of tags (we suggest two to five) to explain the topic.

      Above all, the number one rule for using these features is consistency. Having a few distinct categories and some descriptive tags is a perfect way to ensure that people can easily find posts that interest them.

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      Step 3: Manage Your WordPress Posts

      Once you have some posts under your belt, you may need to manage them from time to time. If you head to the Posts tab in your dashboard, you’ll see a list of all your current entries:

      view all posts in WordPress

      You can use the links and drop-down menus at the top of the screen to sort through your posts by type, category, date, and so on. This is helpful if you’re looking for specific kinds of posts. Of course, you can also use the Search Posts box to find one in particular.

      If you hover over a specific post’s title, you’ll see a few additional options:

      edit your post in WordPress

      You can edit the post, view it, or send it to the trash to delete it. You can also choose Quick Edit, which will enable you to make a few basic changes without taking you to the full post editor.

      Finally, you may notice the checkboxes to the right of each post. If you select several posts, you can edit or delete them all at once by choosing the corresponding action from the Bulk Actions drop-down menu:

      use bulk actions for editing multiple WordPress posts

      Overall, you’ll find that this screen is handy when it comes to keeping track of your posts. You can see each one’s author, tags, categories, and published date, all without having to visit the posts individually. We recommend becoming familiar with the entire Posts tab since it can be a huge time saver.

      Tips for Formatting Your WordPress Posts Effectively

      We’ve now covered how to create posts in WordPress, keep them organized, and manage them over time. However, none of that tells you how to actually write and design your posts for maximum effect. The following tips should help you make them as accessible and reader-friendly as possible!

      Use Headings and Subheadings

      First, let’s return to the post editor within WordPress. The blog post title you enter will always be your Heading 1. When you insert the Heading block, you can choose subsequent headings (ranging from H2 to H6):

      style heading structure in WordPress block editor

      Headers are a smart idea for a variety of reasons. At the most basic level, they help to break up content, making it easier for readers to scan and understand.

      The Heading block comes with established formatting and a hierarchy. You can use the higher-level headers (with large, bolded text) for significant sections while reserving the lower-level options for subheadings.

      For instance, Heading 1 would be used for the title of a post, Heading 2 for main subheadings, Heading 3 for sub-subheadings, and so on. Just keep in mind that the exact formatting of these headers will depend on your theme.

      Additionally, using these header options is good practice for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The way they’re coded communicates clearly to search engine bots how your posts are organized, helping the bots learn what they’re about and promote them to the right searchers.

      Finally, WordPress headers help you keep your post formatting consistent. For best results, determine a heading structure for your first post, then use a similar structure in future content.

      Apply Formatting Options Sparingly

      If you’ve ever used a text editing program on a computer, WordPress’ standard formatting options should feel pretty familiar. You’ll see basic choices such as bolding, italics, and lists:

      modify text styles in the WordPress block editor

      You can also use this toolbar to link and highlight text, as well as apply other formatting styles, such as subscript. It’s best to establish a consistent way to format your WordPress posts.

      For example, you may choose to use bold for emphasis and italics for website names and other titles. If you want to add more customization to the formatting, you can try experimenting with HTML.

      Keep Your Paragraphs Short

      In today’s digital world, people have a lot of content to choose from and sift through. To make yours stand out, you should start by ensuring that it’s easy to read. One excellent way to do that is through headers, which we’ve already discussed. Another is to keep your paragraphs short:

      WordPress platform

      Short paragraphs are a major aspect of writing for the web.

      Readers are drawn to content with lots of short, digestible paragraphs (especially when browsing websites). This makes content easier to skim and leaves plenty of white space.

      Avoid Walls of Text

      Have you ever heard of the dreaded ‘wall of text’? It is precisely what it sounds like — content that is line after line of unbroken text:

      the dreaded wall of text

      Walls of text can be difficult to read and off-putting to visitors. It will be a lot easier for them to lose their place or become overwhelmed and simply leave the site. To avoid this, you can break up text with other elements, both to give readers a break and provide extra value.

      Some of the ways you can break up walls of text within your posts are to use:

      • Bulleted and numbered lists
      • Images, videos, and other media
      • Block quotes
      • Social media callouts

      The best posts are usually a multimedia experience, so don’t be afraid to get creative! Even the most text-heavy content can be made reader-friendly with the strategic inclusion of some images and lists. Fortunately, WordPress formatting makes this process quick and easy.

      Start Creating WordPress Posts

      If you’re running a WordPress blog or news site, understanding how posts work is a necessity. However, even if your site has a different focus, posts can still come in handy. This flexible content type is easy to create, manage, and organize, so learning how to do those things should be one of your first goals.

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      How to Update Your Old WordPress Posts With the Block Editor

      Since the Block Editor is now the default tool for creating new WordPress content, site owners are having to address the question of what will happen to their older posts and pages. This content will inevitably need updating since the Classic Editor plugin won’t be around forever.

      Fortunately, there are methods in place for handling this exact situation. If you need to make changes to an old post, you can easily do so without any help from the Classic Editor. This makes it much easier to bring your old and new content into alignment.

      In this post, we’ll discuss the Block Editor (you might know it by its nickname: Gutenberg) and then we’ll show you two methods for updating your old posts using this new tool. Let’s get started!

      Understanding the Differences Between the Classic and Block Editors

      For many years, WordPress users created new content for their websites in a visual editor, now known as the Classic Editor. It consisted primarily of one large field where you could add text, images, and other media.

      The WordPress Classic Editor.

      The main downside to the Classic Editor was that some elements — such as tables and content columns — required coding or extra plugins to implement. This arguably made the publishing process more complicated and time-consuming than it needed to be.

      To address that issue, the Block Editor was created. It enables you to use a system of ‘blocks’ to create content in WordPress. Each block holds a specific type of content, such as a paragraph, an image, a table, a list, or just about any other element you might want to add to a post or page.

      The WordPress Block Editor.

      With blocks, WordPress users can create more complex content without the need for coding. Each block has individual settings so you can customize specific elements. Additionally, you can more easily move content around the page to create columns or other unique layouts.

      Generally speaking, the Classic Editor is considered the ‘simpler’ of the two options because of its interface. There’s just one field where all of your content goes, as opposed to many separate blocks. However, the Block Editor is built for ease-of-use and can be more user-friendly — especially for those new to WordPress.

      Get More with DreamPress

      DreamPress Plus and Pro users get access to Jetpack Professional (and 200+ premium themes) at no added cost!

      Switching Over from the Classic Editor to the Block Editor

      The Block Editor has been ‘live’ since December 2018 and now serves as the default editor for anyone running WordPress 5.0 or later. However, some users have chosen to disable it in order to continue using the old – or Classic – editor.

      If you’ve been using WordPress for some time and are familiar with the Classic Editor, using the Block Editor may not seem very appealing. After all, it still has compatibility issues with some plugins and themes, and learning a new interface isn’t the most fun way to use your time.

      However, there are a few reasons to embrace the change. To start with, the Block Editor should streamline your content creation. Once you get past the learning curve, adding blocks can be much faster than stopping to code a table or columns by hand. More importantly, you may want to make this transition for the sake of your site in the long term. While right now you can keep the Classic Editor in place using a plugin, WordPress plans to stop support for that system eventually.

      For now, support is promised until 2022. However, once updates are no longer being released, having this plugin installed on your site could pose a security risk. At a certain point, moving over to the Block Editor will be in the best interests of your website.

      What the Block Editor Means for Your Existing Content

      Fortunately, old posts and pages created in the Classic Editor are preserved in their current format with the Block Editor. Each one features a single, large block called a Classic block. All of your text, images, and other content will be found inside this block, unchanged.

      A Classic block in the WordPress Block Editor.

      The Block Editor’s effect on your theme and plugins is a little more complicated. There have been compatibility issues between the new editor and some themes and plugins, so it’s possible that enabling it will cause problems on your site.

      In particular, page builders and other plugins that affect the way the WordPress editor looks and functions tend to have trouble with the Block Editor. However, updates have been released for many of these plugins to fix these issues. It’s a good idea to check each of your major plugins (especially any that affect the editor) to see if they are compatible.

      The Block Editor should be useable with just about any theme. That said, it works better with some than with others. Ideally, you’ll want to use a theme that has been updated for use with the Block Editor or a theme that was created after the new editor’s release and built with compatibility in mind.

      The best way to avoid any potential issues is to create a staging version of your site. Then you can thoroughly test for any problems before updating your live site.

      How to Update Your Old WordPress Posts With the Block Editor (2 Methods)

      Of course, you may not want to leave your old WordPress content as-is. Fortunately, you can update your old posts, pages, and other content types in the Block Editor. There are two primary methods you can use, and each has its pros and cons.

      Before you can use either of them, you’ll need to make sure you have the Block Editor enabled. For most sites, this is already the case.  In other words, if your site is up-to-date and you haven’t done anything to disable the Block Editor, it should be currently active. Therefore, you won’t need to do anything.

      Otherwise, either deactivate the Classic Editor plugin or upgrade to WordPress 5.0 or above to automatically switch your site over to the new editor. Then, you can use one of the following two techniques to work on your existing content.

      Method 1: Continue Editing Your Posts in a Classic Block

      As we described earlier, existing posts and pages will be converted into Classic blocks. If you want, you can edit your content inside these blocks, just as you would in the Classic Editor.

      All you have to do is open the post you wish to update, and click on the Classic block. When you do, you’ll see the TinyMCE toolbar appear at the top of the block. It should look very familiar.

      A Classic block in the Block Editor with the TinyMCE toolbar.

      You can edit within this block exactly as you would in the Classic Editor. If you need to access the Text Editor, you can do so by clicking on the three-dot icon to the right of the toolbar, and selecting Edit as HTML.

      The Edit as HTML option in the Classic block.

      When you select this option, the block’s content will be shown as code, and you can edit it as needed.

      Editing a Classic block in HTML.

      To return to the Visual Editor, simply click on the three-dot icon again and select Edit Visually. That should be all you need to update your old posts using the Classic block.

      Method 2: Convert Your Old Content into Blocks

      The other option you have available is to convert a post or page’s Classic block into new blocks. This will divide up your content up into individual elements, just as if you had created it using the Block Editor.

      To do this, click on the three-dot icon and select Convert to Blocks.

      Selecting the Convert to Blocks option in a Classic block.

      Your post should then split up into separate pieces. Each paragraph will become its own block, as will every heading, image, list, video, button, and element.

      An old Classic Editor post converted into new blocks.

      You can click on an individual block to edit the content within it. While this process usually goes off without a hitch, you’ll want to make sure that each element of your post has converted to the correct type of block.

      For example, if a pull quote from your old post has converted into a regular paragraph block, you can change it by clicking on the leftmost icon in the block toolbar.

      The Change Block Type option in a block.

      You can then select the correct block type from the options listed. Once all of your blocks are set to the correct types, you can use the toolbar at the top of each to make any specific changes related to alignment and placement within the post. You can also make edits related to each block’s type, such as by altering text styling or image size. In other words, you can now use the Block Editor’s full range of capabilities to work on your content.

      New Kid on the Block (Editor)

      Updating old posts is a smart way to freshen up your content and give your site a facelift. If you’re worried about how your old posts will fare in the age of the Block Editor, however, never fear. You can easily make changes to your old posts and pages.

      While you’re updating your WordPress site, why not upgrade your hosting service too? Our DreamPress plans include 24/7 WordPress support to help with all your Block Editor questions.

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      How to Schedule Posts in WordPress (3 Easy Methods)

      Publishing posts to your blog on a regular basis is essential. However, several issues might get in the way of consistent and optimized publishing, such as a full workload, trouble posting during high-traffic periods, or even the decision to take a vacation. Even expert bloggers need a little R ‘n R now and then.

      Fortunately, if you built your website with WordPress, there are a number of ways you can schedule your posts for publication ahead of time. Scheduling your posts enables you to put fresh content up on your site at regular intervals — without having to actually log in each time.

      In this article, we’ll explain the advantages of scheduling blog posts on your WordPress site. Then we’ll share a few methods for doing so, and go over some tips for troubleshooting issues that may arise during the process. Let’s dive in!

      Why It’s Smart to Schedule Your Blog Posts

      Creating a schedule for your blog posts is the best way to ensure that you always have fresh content. Plus, when you post regularly, readers will always know when to expect new articles. This can help keep them engaged and coming back regularly.

      On top of that, scheduling posts can help you manage your workload. When you have a busy week coming up, you can write your posts ahead of time and set a future publication date and specific time for each. Scheduled posts can also make it possible for you to take a vacation from your blog.

      In addition, assigning publication dates and times is useful for posting during peak traffic hours. Your readers may be most active on your site during a time of day you have to be away from your computer, for example. Automated publication lets you make new posts live at the ideal moment.

      How to Schedule Posts in WordPress (3 Methods)

      Fortunately, there are several ways to schedule posts on your WordPress website, so you can choose the method that works best for you. Let’s look at three of the most common options.

      1. Schedule Posts in the Block Editor

      WordPress has innate post scheduling capabilities, which you can access right from the editor screen. Let’s look at how to set a post up for automatic publication in the Block Editor (which you have access to if your WordPress version is 5.0 or higher).

      Open up the post you want to schedule, and in the sidebar to the right, select the Document tab. Under Status & Visibility, you’ll see that your post is set to publish Immediately by default.

      The Status and Visibility settings.

      If you click the link, it will open a calendar where you can select a future date and time. Once you’ve done so, Immediately will change to your specified publication time in the sidebar. Click anywhere outside the calendar to close it.

      Setting the publication date.

      When you’ve given your post one final read-through and are sure it’s ready to go, click on the blue Schedule button at the top of the editor.

      The Schedule button.

      You’ll have the chance to review and edit your post’s publication date and time and set its visibility status to Private, Public, or Password-Protected. WordPress will also point out any last-minute items you may want to address.

      Previewing the scheduled publication date and time.

      When you’re happy with your settings, select the blue Schedule button again.

      Scheduled post verification.

      You should receive a final notification that your post has been set to publish at the date and time you chose. That’s all you have to do!

      2. Set Up Scheduled Posts in the Classic Editor

      If you’re still using the Classic WordPress Editor, never fear. You can still easily set up scheduled posts. Simply head over to the post you want to schedule and check out the Publish widget.

      The Publish widget.

      Just like in the Block Editor, your post will be set to publish immediately by default. Click on Edit next to Publish immediately, which lets you access the date and time settings.

      The scheduled publication date and time settings.

      There’s no fancy calendar here, but it’s still easy enough to set your desired publication date and time. Just make sure to use the 24-hour clock.

      Then, click on OK when you’re done. After you’ve finalized your post’s details, select the blue Schedule button in the Publish widget.

      The Schedule button.

      You should receive a notification that your post has been scheduled and see its changed status in the Publish widget.

      Scheduled post verification.

      If you need to make any updates, you can do so by clicking on the blue Edit link next to any of the settings. Be sure to hit the Update button afterward.

      3. Use a Plugin to Schedule Posts

      If you want to access more advanced automatic publishing features, you may want to consider WordPress plugins. Let’s look at two of the best options.

      WP Scheduled Posts

      The WP Scheduled Posts plugin.

      WP Scheduled Posts adds an editorial calendar to your WordPress dashboard. You can drag and drop posts to schedule them so setting publication dates is fast and easy. This tool also helps you keep track of all your authors if you have multiple people creating content.

      You can even add new posts right in the calendar — save those great ideas you have for a future date. The plugin is free to download, but if you opt for a premium plan, you’ll gain access to additional features including the ‘Auto Scheduler’ and ‘Missed Post Handler.’


      The CoSchedule plugin.

      If you need a more complete content and marketing scheduling system, check out CoSchedule. While you’ll still have to follow the steps for scheduling posts in the WordPress editor as described above, with CoSchedule, you can manage your scheduled blog posts, social media content, and marketing campaigns from a single calendar right in your WordPress dashboard.

      You can download the CoSchedule WordPress plugin for free, but you won’t be able to do anything with it unless you also have a paid CoSchedule account. Plans for those accounts start at $80 per month.

      Troubleshooting Issues With WordPress Scheduled Posts

      Scheduling posts in WordPress is simple, but there are a few issues you may run into. Fortunately, the most common problems have easy solutions.

      Setting the Right Timezone

      First, it’s important to make sure that when you’ve chosen a publication date and time, they’re set to the right time zone.

      The WordPress Timezone settings.

      You can check your site’s time zone settings by going to Settings > General in your WordPress dashboard, and scrolling down to Timezone. There, you can see the time zone your site is currently set to, and change it if need be.

      Handling Missed Posts

      You’ll also want a failsafe in case something goes wrong, and a post you’ve slated for publication doesn’t go live as expected. For this, we suggest looking into a plugin such as Scheduled Post Trigger, which checks for and publishes missed scheduled posts.

      The Scheduled Posts Trigger plugin.

      This way, if your post doesn’t publish automatically for whatever reason, the plugin can still get your content up on your site (even if it’s a little late). If you’re using the premium version of WP Scheduled Posts, its ‘Missed Posts Handler’ feature works in much the same way.

      Unscheduling Posts

      Finally, there may be times when you’ve set up a post for future publication, and then you decide you want to publish it right away instead. To do this in the Classic Editor, head over to the Publish widget and click on Edit next to the date by Scheduled for. Change the settings to the current date and time, and then select OK.

      Unscheduling a post.

      Click on the blue button, which will say either Update or Publish. Once you do, you should receive a notification that your post has been published.

      Publishing an unscheduled post.

      In the Block Editor, this functionality works much the same. Change the scheduled date and time to the current moment, and click outside the calendar to exit the feature. The blue button at the top of the editor will now say Publish.

      Unscheduling and publishing a post. Note the blue Publish button.

      Select it, and WordPress will put the post up on your site immediately.

      Keep Us Posted

      Posting consistently on your WordPress blog is key to your site’s success. Scheduling your blog posts in advance can help you gain more loyal followers, while also making it easier for you to manage your site over time.

      Do you have any questions about how to schedule posts in WordPress? Follow us on Twitter and let us know!

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