Un-Publish Your Pages/Posts in WordPress Using These Steps

6th June 2019

UK WordPress Support How To Unpublish Pages Or Posts In WordPress

If you own a WordPress website, then at some point you may want to unpublish a page or post. Although it’s never a big deal publishing a new post, unpublishing a post can be tricky if you don’t know how to go about it.

The big question that many users ask is how to unpublish pages or posts in WordPress. Well, if this is what’s bothering you, then you’ve come to the right place. We have everything you need to know around unpublished posts or pages in WordPress. Read on to learn how to go about it. Prefer someone to just sort it for you? Take a look at our care plans.

Unpublishing Pages or Posts in WordPress

The main reason you may want to master how to unpublish pages or posts in WordPress is to control what your viewers get. There are many ways to go about this issue on WordPress, which I will be sharing with you here. In this case, you want to completely unpublish the page or post in question.

WordPress has actually made this a little more simple with their recent new editor known as the Gutenberg editor. First, log in to your WordPress site, go to the dashboard and locate your page or post.

Once the editor opens you will see two buttons at the top right of the page. “Preview” and “Update”, to the left of those buttons you will see a link that says “Save Draft”. Click that link and you will then be asked if you are sure you want to unpublish the page. Click ok and that’s it.

Save WordPress Post As Draft

The page or post is now hidden from public view. Even if they can still access the URL to the page, only the post author or admin can access the post or page in question. After you completely unpublish the page, it will no longer be listed on the archive or blog pages.

The best thing about WordPress is that it comes with a wide variety of features on the dashboard menu. You might be wondering how you can unpublish several pages at once? The steps will remain the same, as the answer above.

The only difference, in this case, is in the post’s menu. There is also an option called “Bulk actions.” It gives you an option of selecting several posts at once that you want to be drafted. If you wish to maybe 3-4 pages or posts unpublished, select them and click on the “Draft” option.

Hide Your Page

Hiding your page or post in your WordPress website is also an option, in addition to completely unpublishing your post. Hiding your page or post will prevent visitors from viewing the page contents.

At some point, I am sure you have encountered a situation where you want to access a website, and after clicking the URL. An error message occurs, displaying that it’s a 404 error. The website admin has probably hidden the page from visitors or removed it altogether.

You can choose between the two options of hiding and unpublishing your page or post. If you want to hide your page or post, this is how you should go about it. Go to the dashboard menu, select the option “Publish.”

Go to the visibility section, after clicking on it; a dropdown menu will scroll down. Select the option “Private.” Go ahead and click “Ok” followed by “Update.” The page or post status will be automatically changed to “Privately published.”

In case you have colleagues, who wish to view those unpublished posts that you privately published. There is a way to let them see the private page or posts. Create a share link and share it with them.

This link will redirect their browser to your privately published content. That’s the beauty of using WordPress, no matter the hosting site you are on, WordPress has features, filters, and plugins that you can count on in your website.

Using the Hide Post WordPress Plugin

Before getting to the details on how best to go about this subtopic, let me explain what the word “Plugin,” means. If you are a newbie to WordPress or clueless about coding or software development, you don’t need to worry.

Plugins are software that is added to your WordPress site to extend its functionality and features. WordPress comes with a lot of different plugins. One of the plugins is the WordPress Hide Post plugin. This plugin allows you to remove the page or post from the website while it is still published.

It only allows registered users on your blog to visit the page, provided they have a direct URL to your site. The Hide Post plugin creates a different menu on your visibility tab by adding the features like; tag, category, and front pages.

In brief, this is how the plugin functions. Any new or recent pages you created, will automatically show up on the front page of your pages list. This page will also be listed as the first page in the category, archive, and tag pages.

The Hide Post plugin gives you the exclusive administration rights to who sees the posts or pages. It allows you to hide the page unless you want to share the URL to the hidden page. The page or post will not be visible to anyone and gives you the option of where you want the individual posts to be displayed.

How Do You Go About It?

In the visibility menu, there will be a new Meta box. Remember, the objective of any plugin is to extend the functionality of your features. This Meta box will contain the individual pages, and where you want to hide the posts.

If you’re going to protect the post, go to the post visibility Meta box. Here you will see different options like hiding from tag page or category, author, front and archive pages. There is also an option to hide the post from the feeds and search results.

Moreover, there is also a page visibility setting. You can choose to hide the page if listed on the front page, or everywhere. You can also choose to show the pages as usual. Select the option that you prefer and save your changes before updating. In case you want to change the all you need to do is go back and select another option.

Re-Organize the Menu

WordPress Menu

In this case, you can choose to remove an existing page from the menu. You can decide to remove all links and leave a few direct links for some of your website users. There are two options here, use the automatic choice in WordPress or create your custom menu.

WordPress automatically adds a page to a created menu. Every page will be added to a menu. But in creating your custom menu, you have control on which page will be listed on what menu. It gives you full control over how you want the pages to be indexed.

Remember our primary objective from the start of this topic, is to either unpublish or remove the pages or posts on WordPress. These steps will show you how you can create your custom menu. To create one, go to the dashboard and select “Appearance.” Click on the menu,” and it will give you an option of adding a new name.

After adding a new name of your choice, click on the “Create Button” option. You can now see a box that states locate the pages. It is on the left side of the dashboard. The pages will be listed in alphabetical order.

There is a small box beside it for you to select the pages you want to be listed in the custom menu you created. Select the “Add to menu” option and finally click on the “Save menu” button. The custom menu may not be displayed right away, and the reason is that you need to assign it to a particular location.

In case you have no idea how to go about it.
• Go to the “Manage location” tab.
• Go ahead and pick a location you want to save it, it gives you a dropdown menu,
• Select the name of your custom menu before hitting save.

You can now access your custom menu, with all the selected pages, in your preferred location. What you have achieved is that you have removed some of your posts off the main menu. Only people with direct links can access the pages on your WordPress site.

Password Protect

Password Protect WordPress Page Or Post

Still, within our objective of preventing specific users from accessing your posts, you can choose the option of password protecting your posts and pages. Only those you give the password ton can view your post.

Even logged in members are not able to see the page unless they have the password. You don’t need to worry as these are easy steps to follow and not some coding jargon. Here are the steps on how to achieve this. You don’t need to install any WordPress plugin, and this feature is inbuilt WordPress.

• Go to the editor of the page or post you intend to make private. The publish box will open.
• Click on the visibility setting. More options will appear but click on the “Edit” link.
• You have to choose from three possibilities, namely; private, public and password protected.
• Choose the latter, and a dialogue box will appear for you to enter the password. Do exactly what the prompt states.
• After entering your preferred password, click on the “Ok” button. At this point, you need to save the selected post for activating the password protect feature.

If a user wants to access the post or page in the site, they will only see the password protect dialogue box. If they don’t have the password, access will be denied. The password protects feature can be added either before publishing or after publishing. You can make use of this feature when removing and unpublishing a page or post on your website.

Bottom Line

With WordPress, you can unpublish or remove a page or post with ease as long as you know the right buttons to click. The main reason for doing it is so that some users cannot access the post for some reasons best known to you.

Maybe the post is intended for a specific audience, or it may be that some edits need to be made before it goes public again. There are many ways of limiting some visitors from accessing the posts or pages other than unpublishing them.

You can either password protect the document, create a custom menu, hide your page, remove the page or post entirely, and finally use the WordPress Hide Post Plugin.

They help you achieve the same objective of limiting access to some users or all the users in your site. You can also choose to share the URL links to other users of your choice so that they can access the restricted content on your website.

Want to learn more about managing posts and how to duplicate a WordPress page or post?

Gavin Pedley

Gavin Pedley

Gavin is the guy behind the award-winning ThriveWP. He has over 18 years of experience creating, developing, hosting and managing WordPress websites.

Gavin regularly shares his expertise via the ThriveWP blog and Youtube channel, where he creates informative and helpful WordPress tutorial videos.

Connect with Gavin on FacebookLinkedin or Twitter.

Share this article

Subscribe to receive articles right in your inbox

Get Your Free Guide On Keeping Your WordPress Website Safe

Subscribe to learn how to keep your WordPress website safe, starting with this free guide. Unsubscribe with one click at any time.

We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email address safe. Here’s our privacy policy.


Three amazing products that will enhance your website performance, ranking and maximise your income! Our eBook offer includes three eBooks in one bundle.

We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email address safe. Here’s our privacy policy.