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 great feature that allows you to schedule posts. Lots of WP website owners haven’t discovered this yet. In this latest installment of our training series, we will show you how to schedule posts in WordPress for publishing at a future date.

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

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

For example, here are some situations where you may not want to publish a post immediately after adding it to your website:

  • You travel a lot but you still want content to be published on your site regularly while you’re away.
  • You would like a previously published post removed have it be automatically published again at a specific time/date in the future.
  • You want to publish 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’d like them to receive your posts each day at the same time, but this means that you’d have to be awake at odd hours of the night to publish your blog post.
  • You set aside one day every week to write a whole week’s worth of blog posts, or you outsource your article creation to freelancers who deliver you dozens of articles each month, but you don’t want to publish all of your new content at the same time!
  • You set up an online training course and want to “drip-feed” blog posts to members over a set period of time.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could just add a whole bunch of blog posts to your website or blog at once, and then have it automatically “drip-fed” to your readers 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 on your site that would keep your readers regularly engaged, and free up your time to work on other areas of your business … or leave for a while and know that your content marketing strategy is still working for you while you’re gone.

Well … with WordPress you can! If you set a date/time in the future to publish your blog posts, WordPress will schedule and automatically publish or republish these exactly as you have set.

In this tutorial, we are going to show you how to schedule WordPress posts to publish at a later date/time, and time-saving tips on content scheduling.

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

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

With WordPress you can change the date/time of your published posts, including specifying dates and times in the future. This allows to create or add articles to your website, which can then be pre-scheduled to display live at a future date and time of your choice.

You can schedule existing WordPress posts to publish at a future time using the Quick Edit function when viewing a list of all your existing posts, or you can schedule them when you’re editing or adding new posts.

Scheduling WordPress Posts Using The Quick Edit Feature

To schedule WP posts using the Quick Edit function,

Log into your WordPress dashboard and select Posts > All Posts

Posts Menu - Add New

(Posts Menu)

In your Posts page, find the Post you want to edit, 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 editor expands to display all the “Quick Edit” options for editing posts …

In-line Editor Settings

(In-line Editor Section)

Go to the “Date” section in the “Quick Edit” inline editor screen …

Change Date & Time Settings

(Quick Edit – Change Date & Time Settings)

WordPress allows you to easily schedule the date and time of your post, simply by entering new values in the fields and selecting options from the drop-down menu …

Schedule new date and time of your Post

(Schedule Post date & time)

Useful Tip

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

This is very 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 blog posts to show as having been published on the same dates you’ve been absent. Another great use for backdating your posts would be to give a brand new website or blog a little bit more of an “established” look. Similarly, you can set all posts to publish in the future if you plan to launch a new blog at a future time.

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

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

(Schedule your posts to publish at a later date)

Info

Note: To schedule a post as being published in the PM, you will need to use the 24-hour clock. For example, 1:00 PM would read as 13:00 in the Post Scheduling section. The time your post will actually publish depends on the location settings specified in your Settings > General area.

Remember to click Update to save your new settings …

Click 'Update' to save your new settings

(Click ‘Update’ to save your new post settings)

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

Scheduled Post

(Post status: Scheduled)

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

'Scheduled' post status

(Quick Edit – Post status: ‘Scheduled’)

Scheduling WordPress Posts 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 Box - Publish Settings

(Post publish section – Publish immediately > Edit)

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

Change Post date

(Change Post date)

Don’t forget to click on the Schedule button to save your post settings …

Click on the 'Schedule' button to save your post settings

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

Note: To backdate a 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 for publishing on the date and time you have set …

Post schedule notification

(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: field …

Post Publish Section - Edit

(Publish section – Edit)

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

Click the 'OK' button 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 update your republishing settings …

Post Publish Box - Schedule Button

(Publish Box – Schedule)

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

('Scheduled' Status)

(’Scheduled’ post status)

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

Table of Posts - Post status

(Table of Posts – Post status)

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

Dashboard - Activity Screen

(WP Dashboard – Activity screen)

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

Useful Tip

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

How To Republish A WordPress Post

In some situations, you may decide 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 the time the post was published. Enter a future date (and time), then click Schedule.

When the scheduled time arrives, the post will move from its current position 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 need the 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, your post will automatically redistribute to your subscribers. However, the publication date and time will remain the same, so the post’s link and position in your timeline will remain unchanged.

Useful Tip

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

Sticky post option

(Sticky post option)

Learn more about making posts sticky here:

How To Unschedule A Blog Post

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

Post - Edit

(Post – Edit)

In the Publish module, click on the “Edit” link next to the date your post is scheduled to publish:

Post publish box - Edit

(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 the current time showing on your clock) as your scheduled post time and click on OK

Click the 'OK' button to set your new date settings

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

Click Publish

Publish post

(Publish post)

Your post will be published right away …

Post status: 'Published'

(Publish box – 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? For a 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 items and see if this solves the problem.

Automating Post Scheduling With Plugins

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

Queuing Posts For Publishing

Queue Posts

Queue Posts Plugin

(Queue Posts – WordPress Plugin)

Queue Posts is a free plugin that lets you place new posts and pages in a queue for publishing later.

Whenever you create a new WordPress post or page, you have the option of queuing your post …

Publish Section - Queue Button

(Publish Section – Queue Button)

This is great if you are scheduling a number of 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

(Queue Posts – Settings)

For more information, go here:

Bulk Scheduling Posts

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

Auto Post Scheduler

AutoPost Scheduler WordPress Plugin

(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 older posts keeps your site looking fresh.

This plugin is especially useful if you plan to import 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 specify a range of other settings …

AutoPost Scheduler Options screen

(Auto Post Scheduler Options)

To learn more, go here: AutoPost Scheduler Plugin For WordPress

WP Robot

Although you may not need all of the features of an “autoblogging” plugin, a plugin like WP Robot includes a module that allows you to 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 Autoblogging Plugin

(WPRobot – WordPress Plugin)

For more information about this plugin, visit their website here: WP Robot – WordPress Autoblogging 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 publish your WP posts at a later date.

How To Schedule WordPress Posts

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"I am beyond impressed with what you have put together. I can tell that you put a ton of hard work into building what you have. You have the absolute best content on WordPress I have ever seen!" - Robert T. Jillie

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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.