In order to be successful with my blog, I have to be organized. And one place I could never get organized was my WordPress posts. I had about 50 blog posts sitting in “Draft,” which meant if I needed to find the one I was looking for, I’d have to go searching for it.
So you better believe I was excited when I learned how to make custom WordPress statuses.
What are Custom WordPress Statuses?
So, what are custom WordPress statuses? They’re just like the default statuses provided by WordPress, but you’re able to add as many extras as you need. Typically WordPress comes with 8 default statuses: published, future, draft, pending, trash, auto-draft, and inherit.
Custom WordPress statuses are additional statuses that you create and assign manually. They’re great whether you’re on a team or on your own!
I’ve got several contributors to my work blog, so we have custom WordPress statuses for each person’s assignments, as well as statuses for who is in charge of reviewing them. That way, when I log into WordPress, I can click on the number next to “Assigned – Caitlin” or “Pending – Caitlin” and know what I need to write or approve.
With And Possibly Dinosaurs, on the other hand, I use custom WordPress statuses to break down my writing process. I keep “Draft” for posts that need to be outlined, but then I have “To Be Written” for posts that only have an outline, “To Be Edited” for posts that need a second read-through, “Misc. Ideas” for blog posts that haven’t been added to my editorial calendar but might be useful in the future.
How to Create Custom WordPress Statuses
Creating custom WordPress statuses is really easy! Simply install the plugin Edit Flow by Daniel Bachhuber, Scott Bressler, Mohammad Jangda, Automattic, and Others.
Insider Tip: Automattic is the organization very closely associated with WordPress (the founder of Automattic is one of the founders of WordPress), so you can trust their plugins.
Once you have Edit Flow installed and activated, you’ll see a new Edit Flow tab on the sidebar of your WordPress dashboard. Click on it and make sure “Custom Statuses” is listed as Enabled on the Edit Flow landing page. Once it’s enabled, click Edit Statuses.
The Custom Statuses screen looks very similar to the screens for Categories and Tags, Simply use the Add New section to add a new status, and hover over the existing statuses to edit, quick edit, make default, and delete.
Once you’ve added the custom WordPress statuses you’re interested in, go back to your dashboard. You should notice the Unpublished Content box, which has your Posts at a Glance, listing all of your custom statuses. The number next to each status will link to you a list of those posts.
Last but not least, remember to actually use them! Once you’re in a post, you can change the post status in the top right box, labeled Publish. Simply click on the word “Edit” next to “Status: Draft” and select the appropriate status, then hit Save.
A Few Disclaimers
There are two small things to note if you use Edit Flow to create custom WordPress statuses.
If you use CoSchedule, you can’t rename or replace “Draft” as the default or new posts you create within CoSchedule will disappear. I originally changed “Default” to “To Be Outlined,” but CoSchedule is coded to create new posts and mark them as “Draft,” so if you don’t have a Draft status, you won’t be able to find those posts.
If you use the WordPress phone app, keep in mind that custom statuses won’t show up there. You’ll only be able to see posts with one of the original 8 statuses, so it will be hard to write or edit within the app if you’re using custom WordPress statuses for your posts or pages.
Keeping your blog organized is super important to your success as a blogger! Custom WordPress statuses are just one more small tool that will keep your systems tidy!