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How To Insert Special Characters Into WordPress Posts And Pages

Symbols like © ® ™ and others often need to be inserted into content.

In this tutorial, you are going to learn how to add HTML characters and symbols to your posts.

If you need help using the WordPress Content editor go here:

How To Insert Special Characters And Symbols Into Your WP Posts And Pages

If you need to add special characters and symbols to your content (like  © ® ™ etc), open up a new or existing Post or Page, then make sure you are using the WordPress Visual Editor and click on the Insert Custom Character button …

(Insert Custom Character button – WP Content Editor)

Select a character inside the Special character table to insert it into your text …

(Special character table)

These symbols are called HTML character entities or extended characters. They are created by typing or adding a combination of characters into your website page that browsers then interpret as symbols.

Here are some examples of commonly-used HTML character entities:


Using Smilies In WordPress

Smileys, also known as “emoticons,” are used to convey emotions in your writing. They can be used to brighten up your posts, express disapproval, confusion, sadness, anger, etc… 🙂

Text smilies are created by typing two or more punctuation marks. For example:


By default, WordPress automatically converts text smileys to graphic images. Thus, when you type 😉 in your post you see 😉 when you preview or publish your post.

You can turn off this feature using plugins (see below), so that when you type 😉 in your post, you will see 😉 instead of ;-).

The screenshot below shows a number of smilie images you can use in your content and the characters used to produce these (note: in some instances, you can use multiple text options to display the same smilie ;))

(How to create smilies. Source: WordPress Codex: Using Smileys)

For more information about using Smileys in WordPress, go here:

Inserting Special Characters Into WordPress Posts And Pages – Useful Plugins

HTML Special Characters Helper

This plugin is free that can be very handy  if you frequently use the WordPress Text editor and would like to add special characters to your posts and pages …

(HTML Special Characters Helper – plugin for WordPress)

You can download the plugin here, or search for the plugin by name (i.e. “HTML Special Characters Helper”) to install the plugin directly from the dashboard …

(Adding HTML Special Characters Helper)

After the plugin is installed, a new HTML Special Characters tool will be added to your Add/Edit Post and Add/Edit Page screen columns …

(HTML Special Characters)

To access more symbols, click on the See more link at the bottom of the tool …

(HTML Special Characters – See more link)

The entire list of characters is displayed with characters organized into labeled sections …

(HTML Special Characters – Full list)

Hover over a special character to show the HTML code for the special character and its name …

(Hover your mouse over any character to see codes)

If you’re using the Text editor, this plugin can be very useful because it lets you insert a special character without having to keep switching back to Visual Editor mode. Just click on any symbol in the table and the character encoding will be inserted into the post text at the current cursor location  …

(Character encoding added to post in Text editor)

When used in the visual editor tab the character itself is added to your post body …

(Character inserted into post in Visual editor)

Also, keep in mind that the Visual Content editor has its own special characters tool, which is accessible via the menu. If you only use the Visual Editor, then this plugin is unnecessary. as it would be redundant.

HTML Entities Button

HTML Entities Button is another free plugin you may want to consider installing on your website or blog if you work in Text mode and would like the ability to add custom characters without having to switch to Visual editor tab …

(HTML Entities Button plugin for WordPress)

You can download the plugin from the WordPress plugin repository, or search for the plugin by name to install the plugin directly from inside the Plugin admin area …

(Installing HTML Entities Button)

After the plugin has been installed and activated, you will see a row of new buttons displayed in your Text editor menu …

(HTML Entities Button Menu Items)

The HTML Entities Button plugin allows you to convert special characters to HTML entities …

(Convert special characters to HTML entities)

Or vice-versa (i.e. convert HTML entities to special characters) …

(Convert HTML entities to special characters)

Add HTML entities while working in Text editor mode …

(Insert HTML entities item)

Add emoticons to your content …

(Emoticons feature)

You can also add WP Emojis …

(Choose A WP Emoji feature)

This plugin includes lets you choose items from an extensive selection …


For even more emoticons, consider installing a plugin like WP Emoji One.  This plugin lets you insert 1,000+ emoticons into your content …

(WP Emoji One)

One more thing you can use the HTML Entities Button plugin for is to add links to your most recent posts …

(Insert links to recent posts button)

To learn more about adding internal links to your content using the WordPress default internal linking, see this tutorial:

Keep Emoticons As Text

(Keep Emoticons As Text plugin)

Prior to WordPress version 4.3, WordPress included an option in the “Formatting” section of the Writing Settings (Convert emoticons like 🙂 and 😛 to graphics on display) which instructed WordPress to convert all of the emoticons in your posts into image smileys. This checkbox was enabled by default and allowed users to turn off the feature by unticking the box.

After the release of version 4.3, WordPress removed the “Formatting” section from the Writing Settings. This plugin does the same thing as unchecking the “convert to smilies” option that was available via the settings.

Special Characters – Useful Information:

Click on the links below for more resources and information about custom characters and symbols:

(Source: Pixabay)

Congratulations! Now you know how to add custom characters and symbols to your posts and pages.


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