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 really neat hidden feature that allows you to schedule your posts. Lots Of users haven’t discovered this yet. In this tutorial, you will learn how to schedule WordPress posts for publishing at a later date.
Publishing fresh content regularly on your site helps you get more pages indexed by search engines, drive traffic to your business and keep your blog readers returning for more.
There are times, however, where you don’t necessarily want your content to appear immediately.
For example, here are some instances where you may not want blog posts to display immediately after adding it to the WordPress CMS:
- You travel a lot but you still want posts being published on your blog on a regular basis.
- You need an already published post removed and automatically published again at a specific date and time in the future.
- You would like to publish a daily blog post with the latest news about a certain subject for your loyal blog readers, but they live in a different time zone than you. You want them to read your updates each day before they start work, but this means that you’d have to get up at odd hours of the night to publish your blog post.
- You set aside one day every week to create a whole week’s worth of articles for your website, or you outsource your content creation to freelancers who deliver you dozens of articles once a month, but you don’t want to publish all of your new content at once!
- You set up a private content membership area and want to “drip-feed” posts to members over a period of time.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could just add a bunch of blog posts to your site at once, and then have it all be automatically “drip-fed” to your blog so that only one new article gets published each day, or week, or every few days?
You could then implement a “set and forget” system for scheduling and publishing new content to your blog that would keep your readers regularly engaged, and be free to work on other areas of your business … or leave for a while and know that your article publishing is still working for you.
Well … with WordPress you can! If you set a date in the future for publishing your posts, WordPress will schedule and automatically publish or republish your content exactly as you have specified.
In this tutorial, you will learn how to schedule WP blog posts to publish at a future date/time, and some great tips for automating scheduled content.
Complete the tutorial below to learn more about how to schedule WP blog posts.
Scheduling WordPress Blog Posts – Step-By-Step Tutorial
WordPress allows you to modify the date/time of your published blog posts, including setting dates and times in the future. This enables you to create or add posts to your website, which can then be pre-set to display live at a future date and time of your choice.
You can schedule WordPress posts to publish at a future time using the Quick Edit function when scrolling through a list of all posts, or you can schedule them when you’re editing posts.
Scheduling Posts In WordPress Using The Quick Edit Method
To schedule posts in WordPress using the Quick Edit feature,
Log into your WP dashboard and choose Posts > All Posts …
(Add New Post)
In the Posts section, find the Post you want to edit, then hover your mouse over the post title to display the options menu. Click on Quick Edit…
(Posts Screen – Quick Edit)
The Quick Edit in-line editor expands to reveal all the “Quick Edit” options for editing posts …
(Inline Editor Options)
Locate the “Date” section …
(Date And Time Settings – Quick Edit)
WordPress allows you to easily alter any aspect of the date and time of your post, just by entering new values in the fields or selecting options from a dropdown date menu …
(Schedule new date & time of your Post)
Tip: You can schedule WP blog posts in the future or backdate post dates to show posts as having been published prior to the original date of publication.
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 post dates to match the same dates you’ve been physically absent. Another reason to backdate your blog posts would be to give a brand new website a little bit more of an “established” look. Conversely, you can set all posts to publish in the future if you plan to launch a new site after getting it all ready and finished.
Change the date of your post to whatever date (and/or time) you would like your post to show as having been published (future or past) …
(Posts scheduled to publish at a later date)
Note: To schedule a post as being published in the PM, you will need to use the 24-hour clock. For example, to display 1:00 PM enter 13:00 in the scheduling module. The time your post will actually publish is based on the location settings specified in your Settings > General area.
Remember to click the Update button to save your new settings …
(Click the ‘Update’ button to save your new settings)
Your post status will now show as being “Scheduled” in your Table of Posts …
Your post will also show as being “Scheduled” inside the Quick Edit > Status section …
(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 later date and time, by clicking on Publish immediately > Edit…
(Post publish section – Publish settings)
Change the date (and time) of your post and click the OK button …
(Change Post date and time)
Click on the Schedule button to update your settings …
(Click on the ‘Schedule’ button to save your settings)
Tip: 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 set …
(Post schedule message)
If you are editing an existing post, you can also schedule the post to be republished later by clicking on the Edit link next to the Published on: section …
(Post publish box – Edit)
Change the date (and time if you want) of your post and click OK …
(Click the ‘OK’ button to set your new date settings)
Remember to click the Schedule button to save your republishing settings …
(Post Publish Box – Schedule Button)
Your post will now show as being “Scheduled” inside the Post Edit > Publish module …
(Post status: ‘Scheduled’)
Your saved post will now show as being “Scheduled” in your Posts screen …
(Posts table – Date column)
You can see which scheduled posts are queued for publishing in your WP dashboard’s ‘Activity’ panel …
(Dashboard – Activity screen)
Now, we will show you how to republish existing WP blog posts.
Useful Tip: The above method also works for editing WP pages.
How To Republish A WordPress Post
In some situations, you may want to republish an old post. If you do, there are a few options you can use to do this:
Edit Post Date And Time
You can reschedule your post by editing the date and time that the post was published. Enter a later date and time, then click Schedule.
When the scheduled time arrives, the post will move from its current place in your timeline to the most recent spot on your blog and display the new date and time. The post link will also be updated to reflect the new publication date.
Note: When you reschedule a post, it will not redistribute to your email subscribers. If you want your post to be redistributed to your email subscribers, use the option below.
Edit Post Status
You can republish your post by changing the status of your post to Draft, clicking Update, and then clicking Publish again …
(Republish your post)
When you do this, the post will automatically redistribute to your blog subscribers. However, the publication date and time will remain the same, so the post’s link and position in the timeline will remain the same.
Tip: If you want a republished post to show up first on your site, you can always make it “sticky” …
(Sticky post option)
Learn more about making posts sticky here:
Un-Scheduling A Blog Post
If you’ve scheduled a WP post to publish later, but then change your mind and want to publish it immediately, simply return to the Edit Post screen for your scheduled post.
(Post – Edit)
In the Publish section, click on the “Edit” link next to the date your post is scheduled for publishing:
(Publish section – 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 your current time) as your scheduled post time and click on OK …
(Click the ‘OK’ button to set your new date and time settings)
Click Publish …
(Post publish box)
Your post will now publish right away …
(Post status: ‘Published’)
Troubleshooting Scheduled Posts
If your scheduled post failed to publish when the scheduled time arrived, check the following:
- Is your timezone set correctly in your Settings > General section?
- Check the Post Status. Have you saved your post as a “Draft” instead of scheduling it?
- Did you remember to click the “Schedule” button after modifying the date/time settings? For the post to publish, the Schedule button must be clicked.
- Did you schedule too many posts for publishing? Are you using bulk post scheduling plugins to queue up thousands of posts? Depending on the resources of your web server, you could experience problems. If so, try decreasing the number of scheduled posts and see if this solves the problem.
Automate Post Scheduling With Plugins
You can automate various aspects of publishing and scheduling content in WordPress with plugins.
Queuing Posts For Publishing
(Queue Posts Plugin For WordPress)
Queue Posts is a free plugin that lets you queue new posts and pages for later publication.
Whenever you create a new WordPress post or page, the plugin gives you the option of queuing your post …
(Publish Box – 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 at specific times and intervals …
(Queue Posts – Settings)
For more information about this plugin, visit the plugin’s website:
Bulk Scheduling WordPress
There are a number of WP plugins designed for “autoposting” or “autoblogging” (add content automatically to WordPress sites).
(Auto Post Scheduler Plugin For WordPress)
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 when importing a large number of blog posts, as you can set the Auto Post Scheduler to publish posts at whatever frequency you choose as well as setting a range of other options …
(Auto Post Scheduler Options screen)
To learn more, go here: AutoPost Scheduler – WordPress Plugin
Although you may not want to use all of the features of an “autoblogging” plugin, a plugin like WP Robot includes a module that allows you to bulk import posts or article files into your WordPress site and then set these to automatically publish at regular or random intervals in the future.
(WPRobot – WordPress Autoblogging Plugin)
For more details about this plugin, visit their website here: WPRobot – WordPress Autoblogging Software
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 …
To learn how to fix the missed post scheduling issue, see the tutorial below:
Congratulations! Now you know how to schedule WordPress posts to publish at a future date.
"I was absolutely amazed at the scope and breadth of these tutorials! The most in-depth training I have ever received on any subject!" - Myke O'Neill, DailyGreenPost.com