What are status and visibility on my WordPress posts and pages?

WordPress Wednesdays LogoWhen you’re adding a new post or page on WordPress, you’ll notice that you have a whole bunch of publishing options. Today we’re going to review what they are, and when you’d want to use them.

You’ll see all of these options at the top right when you’re creating or editing a page or post, simply click ‘Edit’ to see all the choices available.

WordPress Publishing OptionsStatus

Under status you’ll see options for:

  • Draft: Typically used for posts which haven’t been finished yet, the author is still working on them. When you click ‘Save Draft’ on a new item, you’re choosing this option.
  • Pending Review: Typically used for posts which need to be reviewed by an editor before publishing.

You can choose to use these however you wish, but I’d suggest being consistent so you don’t end up with a big mess. Using these well is most important if you have multiple authors.


Under Visibility, you can choose:

  • Public: Public posts are available to all visitors to the website, as well as search engines.
    • Stick this post to the front page: ‘Sticky’ posts, as they’re called, will always appear at the top of your post lists (your blog page, recent posts, etc.). You’ll want to be sparing in how you use these, as some visitors may see the same post at the top and assume there is nothing new for them. Keep sticky posts short and sweet, and ideally only use them for really key items like upcoming events and promotions, and take them off ASAP.
  • Password Protected: Password protected posts will require visitors to enter the correct password to view. This will be the same password for every visitor. You may want to use this for special content, and send out the password with your newsletter. This is a fairly simple password method, so I wouldn’t suggest it for anything which it is critical remains private. Visitors and search engines will typically see the post title, but won’t be able to view the content without the password.
  • Private: Private posts are only visible to logged in visitors. The public and search engines will not see these posts listed anywhere. If you’re trying to build a subscriber community, this is a great way to encourage sign-ups, by promoting the fact that there is more content once you log in.


Under publish, you have the option to set the date for your post. By default, this will be set to the current date and time, but you can change this to post in the past (perhaps for historic events which weren’t posted at the time), or the future, which will schedule them for release on that date.

Hopefully this will help take some of the mystery out of all those options under the publish header when you’re creating new content.

If you need any help with content creation, post editing, and much more, give AWEBthatWORKS a call – 1-800-579-9253.

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Posted on by Sue
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