How To Schedule WordPress Posts

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

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How To Schedule WordPress Posts

If you are serious about 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 allows you to postdate or backdate posts. Lots of WordPress newbies don’t know about this. In this article, we will show you how to schedule WP posts and pages for publishing later.

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

There may be instances, however, where you don’t necessarily want content to appear when you hit the publish button.

For example, here are some instances where you may not want to display a post as soon as it’s been added to your site:

  • You need to travel but you still want to publish articles to your blog on a regular basis.
  • You want to remove a previously published post and automatically republish it at a specific time/date in the future.
  • You want to publish a daily post 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 receive your updates each day at the same time, but this means that you’d have to be awake in the middle of the night to hit the “publish” button.
  • You set aside one day every week to write a whole week’s worth of content for your site, or you outsource your content creation to professional writers who deliver you many articles each month, but you don’t want to publish all of your new content at once!
  • You launch a private content membership area and want the articles to be drip-fed 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 website or blog in one go, and then have it automatically “drip-fed” to your blog 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 fresh 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 article strategy is still working for you.

Well … with WordPress you can! You can set a date/time in the future to publish your posts and WordPress will schedule and automatically publish or republish your content on the exact dates and times that you have set.

In this tutorial, you will learn a little-known function that lets you schedule WP posts to publish at a future date, and some great tips for publishing scheduled content.

Complete the tutorial below to learn how to schedule WordPress posts.

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

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

You can schedule posts to publish at a future time with the Quick Edit feature when viewing a list of all posts, or you can schedule them when editing existing posts.

Scheduling Posts In WordPress Using The Quick Edit Feature

To schedule posts in WordPress using the Quick Edit function,

Log into your WP dashboard and choose Posts > All Posts

WP Posts - Add New

(WordPress Posts Menu – Add Post)

In your Posts area, 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

Quick Edit

(Quick Edit)

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

Inline Editor Settings

(Quick Edit Section)

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

Quick Edit - Date Settings

(Date Settings – Quick Edit)

WordPress allows you to edit 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 date and time of your Post

(Schedule date & time of your Post)

Useful Tip

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

This is useful if, for example, you’ve been away and would like to publish an account of your experiences and would like your blog posts to reflect the actual dates you’ve been absent. Another great use for backdating your blog posts would be to give a brand new website or blog a little bit more of an “established” look. Conversely, you can set all posts to publish in the future if you plan to launch your blog after getting everything set up and configured.

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

Posts scheduled to publish at a specified date

(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, to display 1:00 PM enter 13:00 in the Post Scheduling module field. The time your post will actually get published depends on the location settings specified in your Settings > General area.

Remember to click the Update button to save your new settings …

Click 'Update' to save your new settings

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

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

Your post is now scheduled for publishing

(Scheduled Post)

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

Quick Edit - 'Scheduled' post status

(‘Scheduled’ post status)

How To Schedule 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 immediately > Edit

(Publish section – Publish immediately > Edit)

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

Change Post date and time

(Change Post date)

Remember to click on the Schedule button to save your post settings …

Click on 'Schedule' to update your settings

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

Note: To backdate a blog 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 notification

(Post schedule message)

If you are editing an existing post, you can schedule your post to be republished at a future date by clicking on the Edit link next to the Published on: field …

Post Publish Section - Edit

(Post publish section – Edit)

Change 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

(Schedule Post)

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

('Scheduled' Status)

(Post status: ‘Scheduled’)

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

Posts table - Date column

(Posts table – Date column)

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

Dashboard - Activity Screen

(Dashboard – Activity screen)

Now, we’ll show you how to republish existing blog posts.

Useful Tip

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

Republishing A WordPress Post

In some instances, you may need to republish an old post. If you do, 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 later date (and time) and 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 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 simply by changing the status of your post to Draft, clicking Update, and then clicking Publish again …

Republish your post

(Republish your post)

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

Useful Tip

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

Tick box to make post sticky

(Tick box to make post sticky)

Learn more about making posts sticky here:

Unscheduling A 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

(Edit Post)

In the Publish module, click on the “Edit” link next to the date you have scheduled your blog post for publishing:

Publish section - 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 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 the ‘OK’ button to set your new date and time settings)

Click Publish

Publish box

(Publish post)

Your post will be published right away …

Post status: 'Published'

(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 the post as a “Draft” instead of scheduling it?
  • Did you remember to click the “Schedule” button after changing the date/time? 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 items and see if this solves the problem.

Automating Post Scheduling With Plugins

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

Queuing Posts For Publishing

Queue Posts

Queue Posts

(Queue Posts Plugin For WordPress)

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

Whenever you create a new post or page, you have the option of queuing the post for publishing later …

Post Publish Box - Queue Button

(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 specific order, or at certain times and intervals …

Settings For Queueing Posts

(Settings For Queueing Posts)

To learn more, visit their website:

Bulk Schedule WP

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

AutoPost Scheduler

Auto Post Scheduler WP Plugin

(Auto Post Scheduler Plugin)

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 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 specify a range of other settings …

Auto Post Scheduler Options screen

(Auto Post Scheduler Options)

To learn more, visit the plugin’s website here: AutoPost Scheduler

WP Robot

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 set these to publish automatically at regular or random intervals in the future.

WPRobot - WordPress Autoblogging Plugin

(WP Robot – WP Autoposting Software)

To learn more, go here: WP Robot – WP Autoblogging 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 publish your WordPress blog posts at a later date.

How To Schedule WordPress Posts

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"This is AMAZING! I had learnt about how to use WordPress previously, but this covers absolutely everything and more!! Incredible value! Thank you!" - Monique, Warrior Forum

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Author: Martin Aranovitch

Martin Aranovitch is the founder of WPCompendium.org and the author of The Small Business Digital Manager. 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.