How To Schedule WordPress Posts

Learn how to schedule WordPress posts for publishing your content at a later (or earlier) date …

How To Schedule WordPress Posts

If you are truly committed to growing your business online, you will need a content marketing strategy. An important part of any content marketing strategy is maintaining a regular content publishing schedule.

So … what happens to your content publishing schedule if you have to step away for a while?

WordPress has a neat feature that allows you to schedule posts. Many WP website owners haven’t discovered this yet. In this tutorial, you will learn how to schedule WordPress posts.

Publishing fresh content on your WordPress site on a regular basis helps you get more pages indexed on search engines, drive new visitors to your site and keep your blog readers coming back for more information.

There may be times, however, when you don’t necessarily want your content to show when you hit the publish button.

For example, here are some instances when you may not want blog posts published immediately after adding it to your WordPress blog:

  • You need to go away for a while but you still want to publish posts on your blog regularly while you’re gone.
  • You want an already published post removed have it be automatically published again at a specific time and date later.
  • You want to publish a daily update with the latest news about a certain subject for your blog readers, but they live in a different time country than you. You’d like them to read your updates each day at a certain time, but this would require you to get up at 3:30 am to publish your blog post.
  • You set aside one day each week to write a whole week’s worth of content for your site, or you outsource your content writing to freelance writers who send you many articles once a month, but you don’t want to publish all of your new content at once!
  • You set up an online training course and would like to “drip-feed” articles to members over a set period of time.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could just add a whole bunch of content to your website or blog at once, and then have it all be automatically “drip-fed” to your readers so that only one new post got published each day, or week, or every few days?

You could then implement a “set and forget” system for scheduling and publishing new content on your site that would keep your readers regularly engaged, and free up your time to focus on other areas of your business … or leave for a while and know that your article publishing is still working for you while you’re gone.

Well … with WordPress you can! You can set a date in the future for publishing your blog posts and WordPress will schedule and automatically publish or republish your content exactly as you have specified.

In this tutorial, you will learn a little-known function that lets you schedule WordPress blog posts to publish at a future date, plus time-saving tips on post scheduling.

Go through the tutorial below to learn how to schedule WordPress posts for publishing later.

Scheduling WordPress Posts – Step-By-Step Tutorial

With WordPress you can alter the date/time of your published blog posts, including setting dates and times in the future. This allows to create or add blog posts to your WordPress website, which can then be preconfigured to display live at any given date and time of your choice.

You can schedule existing WordPress posts to publish at a future time using the Quick Edit feature when scrolling through a list of all your existing WordPress posts, or you can schedule them as you’re working on existing blog posts.

Scheduling WordPress Posts Using The Quick Edit Method

To schedule WP posts using the Quick Edit method,

Log into your WP admin area and click on Posts > All Posts

Add New Post

(Add New Post)

In your Posts section, find the Post you want to schedule, then hover your mouse over the post title to display the options menu and click on Quick Edit

Posts Section - Quick Edit

(Posts Screen – Quick Edit)

The Quick Edit inline editor expands to display all of the “Quick Edit” options for editing your Post …

In-line Editor Settings

(Quick Edit Options)

Find the “Date” section in the “Quick Edit” in-line editor screen …

Quick Edit Screen - Change Date And Time Settings

(Quick Edit – Date Settings)

WordPress lets you set any aspect of the date and time of your post, simply by entering new values in the fields and choosing options from the dropdown date menu …

Schedule date & time of your Post

(Change date and time of your Post)

Useful Tip

Useful Tip: You can schedule posts in WordPress in the future or backdate posts to show content as having been published prior to its original publishing date.

This is quite useful if, for example, you’ve been away and would like to publish an account of your day-to-day events and would like your posts to display as having been posted on the same dates you’ve been away. Another reason to backdate your blog posts would be to give a brand new website or blog a little bit more of an “established” look. Alternatively, you can set all blog posts to publish in the future if you plan to launch a new site at a future time.

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Change the date of your post to whatever date (and time) you would like it to show as having been published (future or past) …

Schedule Post to publish at a later date & time

(Posts scheduled to publish at a later date & time)

Info

Note: To schedule a post as being published in the PM, you will need to use the 24-hour system. For example, to display 1:00 PM enter 13:00 in the Schedule Post area. The time your post will actually publish is determined by the location settings set in your Settings > General section.

Remember to click Update to save your new changes …

Click 'Update' to save your new post settings

(Click the ‘Update’ button to save your new settings)

Your post status will now show as being “Scheduled” in your Table of Posts …

Post status: Scheduled

(Post scheduled for publishing)

Your post status will also display as being “Scheduled” inside the Quick Edit > Status section …

'Scheduled' post status

(Post status: ‘Scheduled’)

Scheduling Posts In WordPress When Adding / Editing Posts

If you are creating a new post, you can schedule your post to publish at a future date, by clicking on Publish immediately > Edit

Publish Box - Publish immediately > Edit

(Post publish section – Publish settings)

Edit the date (and time) of your post and click the OK button …

Change Post date and time

(Change Post date and time)

Click on Schedule to update your settings …

Click 'Schedule' to update your settings

(Click on ‘Schedule’ to save your post settings)

Note: To backdate a post, simply edit the date before you click the Publish button, as described above. In this case, the button will not change to Schedule.

Your post is now scheduled for publishing on the date and time you have entered …

Post schedule message

(Post schedule message)

If you are editing an existing post, you can schedule the post to be republished in the future by clicking on the Edit link next to the Published on: section …

Post Publish Box - Edit

(Publish section – Edit)

Edit the date (and time if you want) of your post and click OK

Click 'OK' to set your new date settings

(Click the ‘OK’ button to set your new date and time settings)

Click on the Schedule button to update your republishing settings …

Publish Section - Schedule

(Post Publish Section – Schedule)

Your post should now show as being “Scheduled” inside the Post Edit > Publish section …

(Post status: 'Scheduled')

(‘Scheduled’ Status)

Your post will now show as ”Scheduled” in your Table of Posts …

Table of Posts - Date column

(Posts table – Post status)

You can see which scheduled posts are queued for publishing in your WordPress dashboard’s ‘Activity’ panel …

WP Dashboard - Activity Screen

(Dashboard – Activity screen)

Let’s show you now how to republish posts.

Useful Tip

Useful Tip: The above method also works for editing WordPress pages.

How To Republish A WordPress Post

In some situations, you may want to republish an old post. If so, there are a few different options you can use to do this:

Edit Post Date And Time

You can reschedule your post by changing the date and time that the post was published. Enter a later date and time and click Schedule.

When the scheduled time arrives, the post will jump from its current place in your timeline to the most recent spot on your blog and display the new date and time. The link for the post will also update to reflect the new publication date.

Note: When you reschedule a post, it will not redistribute to your email subscribers. If you want the post to be redistributed to your email subscribers, use the option below.

Edit Post Status

You can republish your post simply by changing the status of your post to Draft, clicking Update, and then clicking Publish again …

Republishing your post

(Republishing your post)

When you do this, your post will immediately be re-sent to your email subscribers. However, the publication date and time will not change, so the post’s link and position in the timeline will remain unchanged.

Useful Tip

Tip: If you want a republished post to show up first on your blog, you can always use the “sticky” feature …

Making a post sticky

(Tick box to make post sticky)

Learn more about making posts sticky here:

Unscheduling A Post

If you’ve scheduled a blog post to publish in the future, but then change your mind and decide to publish it immediately, simply go back to the Edit Post page for your scheduled post.

Edit Post

(Post – Edit)

In the Publish section, click on the “Edit” link next to the date your post is scheduled for publishing:

Post publish section - Edit

(Publish box – Edit)

Now, just enter today’s date and time (tip: if you’re not sure of the exact time just type in an hour or two earlier than the current time showing on your clock) as your scheduled post time and click OK

Click 'OK' to set your new date and time settings

(Click ‘OK’ to set your new date settings)

Click Publish

Publish button

(Post publish button)

Your post will be published immediately …

Post status: 'Published'

(Post publish button – Status: ‘Published’)

Troubleshooting Scheduled Posts

If your scheduled post did not publish when the scheduled time arrived, check the following:

  • Is your timezone set correctly in your Settings > General section?
  • Check your Post Status. Did you save the post as a “Draft” instead of scheduling it?
  • Did you remember to click the “Schedule” button after changing the date/time settings? For a post to publish, you must click the Schedule button.
  • Did you schedule too many posts for publishing? Are you using bulk post scheduling plugins to queue up thousands of posts? Depending on your hosting setup, you could experience problems. If so, try lowering the number of scheduled items and see if this fixes the problem.

Automating Post Scheduling With Plugins

You can automate various aspects of publishing and scheduling your content in WordPress with plugins.

Queuing Posts For Publishing

Queue Posts

Queue Posts WP Plugin

(Queue Posts)

Queue Posts is a free WP plugin that lets you queue new posts and pages for later publication.

When you create a new WP post or page, the plugin gives you the option of queuing the post for publishing later …

Post Publish Box - Queue Button

(Publish Section – Queue Button)

This is great if you are scheduling multiple posts for publishing at a later date and would like these to be published in a certain order, or between certain times and intervals …

Queue Posts - Settings

(Settings For Queueing Posts)

To learn more, visit their website here:

Bulk Schedule WP

There are a number of plugins designed for “autoposting” or “autoblogging” (adding content automatically to WordPress blogs).

Auto Post Scheduler

Auto Post Scheduler

(AutoPost Scheduler WordPress Plugin)

Auto Post Scheduler is a free plugin that will schedule ‘auto post checks’ to publish new posts and/or recycle old posts automatically.

Use a plugin like Auto Post Scheduler to publish new posts and/or recycle old posts automatically. There’s no need to schedule post times individually and recycling old posts can revitalize traffic.

This plugin is especially useful if you plan to import a large number of posts, as you can set the plugin to publish posts at whatever frequency you choose as well as setting a range of other options …

Auto Post Scheduler Options

(Auto Post Scheduler Options screen)

For more details, go here: AutoPost Scheduler Plugin

WPRobot

Although you may not need all of the features of an “autoblogging” plugin, a plugin like WPRobot includes a module that lets you import bulk posts or article files into your WordPress site and then set these to publish automatically at regular or random intervals at a late time.

WP Robot - WP Plugin

(WP Robot – WP Plugin)

To learn more, go here: WP Robot – WP Autoposting Software

Drip-Feeding Posts

If you plan to run a membership-style website, most professional WordPress membership plugins allow you to schedule your content to be ‘drip-fed’ to members at intervals that you specify (e.g. every 7 days, etc.).

To learn more about membership plugins that allow you to schedule content delivery, go here:

Fixing “Missed Schedule” Posts

Sometimes WordPress will miss a scheduled post …

Missed post schedules

To learn how to fix the missed post scheduling issue, see the tutorial below:

Congratulations, now you know how to schedule posts for publishing in WordPress at a later date.

How To Schedule WordPress Posts

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Originally published as How To Schedule WordPress Posts.