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 really cool feature that lets you schedule posts. Lots of WP users don’t know about this. In this tutorial, we will show you how to schedule WP posts and pages for publishing later.

Publishing great content regularly on your site helps you get more pages indexed on search engines, drive visitors to your business and keep your site readers returning for more information.

There may be instances, however, where you may not want your content to be published immediately.

For example, here are some instances where you may not want to show a WordPress post as soon as it has been added to the WordPress CMS:

  • You need to go away for a while but you still want blog posts to be published on your site on a regular schedule.
  • You would like to remove an already published post and automatically it again at a specific date and time later.
  • You would like to start publishing a daily blog post with the latest news about a certain subject for your blog readers, but they live in a different time zone than you. You want them to read your updates every day before they start work, but this means that you’d have to be awake between 3 and 4 am to hit the “publish” button.
  • You set aside one day every week to write a whole week’s worth of blog posts, or you outsource your article creation to professional writers who send you dozens of articles once a month, but you don’t want to publish all of your new content at the same time!
  • You set up a private content membership area and want 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 articles to your site in one go, and then have it all be automatically “drip-fed” to your readers so that only one new post gets published each day, or week, or every few days?

You could then implement a “set and forget” system for scheduling and publishing fresh content on your blog that would keep your readers regularly engaged, and be free to focus on other areas of your business … or go away 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/time in the future for publishing your posts and WordPress will schedule and automatically publish or republish your posts exactly as you have set.

In the tutorial below, we are going to show you how to schedule WordPress blog posts to publish at a later date/time, as well as time-saving tips on article scheduling.

Go through the step-by-step tutorial below to learn more about how to schedule blog posts in WP.

How To Schedule WP Blog Posts – Step-By-Step Tutorial

With WordPress you can easily change the date and time of your published posts, including setting exact dates and times in the future. This lets you create or add blog posts to your website, which can then be preconfigured to display live at a future date and time of your choice.

You can schedule WordPress posts to publish at a future date using the Quick Edit function when viewing a list of all your existing WP posts, or you can schedule them when working on blog posts.

Scheduling WordPress Posts Using The Quick Edit Feature

To schedule blog posts in WordPress using the Quick Edit function,

Log into your WordPress dashboard and click on Posts > All Posts

WordPress Posts - Add New

(WordPress Posts Menu – Add Post)

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

Posts Section - Quick Edit

(Posts Section – Quick Edit)

The Quick Edit in-line editor expands to reveal all the “Quick Edit” options for editing posts …

Inline Editor Settings

(In-line Editor Options)

Locate the “Date” feature …

Date & Time Settings - Quick Edit Area

(Date Settings – Quick Edit Area)

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 choosing options from the drop-down menu …

Schedule new date and time of your Post

(Schedule date & 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 the original publishing date.

This is great if, for example, you’ve been away and would like to publish an account of your day-to-day events and would like your blog posts to display as having been posted on 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. Likewise, you can set all posts to publish in the future if you plan to launch your blog at a future time.

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

Schedule your posts to publish at a later specified date & time

(Posts scheduled to publish at a later specified date)

Info

Note: To schedule a post in the PM, you will need to use the 24-hour system. For example, 1:00 PM would read as 13:00 in the scheduling module. The time your post will actually publish depends on the location settings set in your Settings > General section.

Remember to click Update to save your post settings …

Click 'Update' to save your changes

(Click ‘Update’ to save your post settings)

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

Your post is now scheduled for publishing

(Your post is now scheduled for publishing)

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

'Scheduled' post status

(Quick Edit – Post status: ‘Scheduled’)

How To Schedule WordPress Posts When Adding / Editing Posts

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

Post Publish Section - Publish Settings

(Publish section – Publish settings)

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

Change Post date

(Change Post date)

Remember to click Schedule to save your settings …

Click 'Schedule' to save your settings

(Click ’Schedule’ to save your settings)

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

Your post is now scheduled to publish on the date and time you have specified …

Post schedule message

(Post schedule message)

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

Post Publish Section - Edit

(Post publish section – Edit)

Change the date (and time if you want) of your post and click the OK button …

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

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

Remember to click the Schedule button to save your republishing settings …

Publish Section - Schedule Button

(Post Publish Box – Schedule Button)

Your post should now show as being scheduled inside the Post Edit > Publish area …

(Status: 'Scheduled')

(‘Scheduled’ Status)

Your post status will now show as ”Scheduled” in your Posts screen …

Posts table - Date column

(Table of Posts – Date column)

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

Dashboard - Activity Screen

(WP Dashboard – Activity screen)

Let’s show you now how to republish existing WP blog posts.

Useful Tip

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

How To Republish A WP Post

In some situations, you may need to republish an old post. If so, there are a few options you can choose:

Edit Post Date And Time

You can reschedule your post by changing the date and the time the post was published. Enter a new 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 need 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

(Republishing your post)

When you do this, the post will immediately redistribute to your blog subscribers. However, the publication date and time will not change, so the post’s link and position in the timeline will stay unchanged.

Useful Tip

Tip: If you want a republished post to show up first on your site, you can always make it “sticky” …

Make this post sticky

(Tick box to make post sticky)

Learn more about making posts sticky here:

Unscheduling A Blog Post

If you’ve scheduled a WordPress post to publish later, but changed your mind and decide to publish it immediately, just return 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 you have scheduled your blog post for publishing:

Publish box - Edit

(Post 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 OK

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

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

Click Publish

Publish post

(Post publish box)

Your post will now be published immediately …

Post publish box - Post status: 'Published'

(Post 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 your post as a “Draft” instead of scheduling it?
  • Did you click the “Schedule” button after changing the date/time settings? For the 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 server resources, you could experience problems. If so, try lowering the number of scheduled posts and see if this solves the issue.

Automate Post Scheduling With WP Plugins

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

Queuing Posts For Publishing

Queue Posts

Queue Posts Plugin

(Queue Posts Plugin)

Queue Posts is a free plugin that allows you to queue new posts and pages for publishing later.

Whenever you create a new post or page, the plugin gives you the option of queuing your post …

Queue Button

(Queue Button)

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

Queue Posts - Settings

(Settings For Queueing Posts)

To learn more, go here:

Bulk Scheduling Posts

There are a number of plugins that let you “autopost” content (add content automatically to WordPress sites).

Auto Post Scheduler

AutoPost Scheduler WP Plugin

(Auto Post Scheduler Plugin For WordPress)

Auto Post Scheduler is a free WordPress 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 older posts can revitalize traffic.

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

AutoPost Scheduler Options screen

(Auto Post Scheduler Options screen)

For more details, go here: Auto Post Scheduler Plugin For WordPress

WPRobot

Although you may not need to use all of the features of an “autoblogging” plugin, a plugin like WP Robot 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 in the future.

WP Robot - WP Plugin

(WPRobot – WordPress Autoblogging Plugin)

For more information, go here: WPRobot – WordPress Plugin

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 WordPress blog posts to publish at a future date.

How To Schedule WordPress Posts

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"These tutorials have so much information and are easy to understand. If you use WordPress or plan to in the future these will help you with everything you need to know." - Valisa (Mesa, Arizona)

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Author: Martin Aranovitch

Martin Aranovitch is the owner of WPCompendium.org and the author of The WordPress User Manual. WPCompendium.org provides hundreds of FREE tutorials that show you how to use WordPress to grow your business online with no coding skills required! Get our FREE "101+ WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies" e-course with loads of useful WordPress tips!

Originally published as How To Schedule WordPress Posts.