Have you ever wanted to make a private blog?
A blog which is only seen by you or probably to only a selected few.
Who would not like to own such a private space?
Wondering how it is done?
First, let’s understand why an existing blogger may require creating a private blog post or an entire WordPress blog private.
If you are like most bloggers, you are probably always trying to get more traffic to your website. Despite, sometimes you might have a specific situation where you want to go the other way and unless make a single blog post (or page) private or make your entire blog private.
That can be helpful if you want to make a particular page for only sure people (like members-only content) or if you want a private place to share your thoughts. On a short-term basis, it’s also helpful for previewing material in a live environment without exposing your readers to content that you are not ready to publish.
In this post, I’m going to share two different ways to make WordPress private. You will learn:
- How to create a single blog post or page individual
- How to make your whole WordPress site private
Let’s get started…
How To Create A Single WordPress Post Or Page Private
WordPress has the feature to make a post or page private in the core WordPress software. Although to get the most from this feature, it helps to know a few tricks. I’ll discuss why in a second.
First, let’s go through the necessary process of creating a post private:
To reach the privacy settings for a post or page:
- Edit that post or page that you want to make individual
- Look for the Visibility option under the Publish box at the right
- Click Edit
Next, you have two options:
- Password protected – users that try to view the post will require entering a password before they can see it.
- Private – just users who are logged in and own high-level privileges can see the post. Anyone else that tries to access the post via its direct URL will view a 404 error page.
Below, I’m going to go through precisely how these two options function and share some helpful tricks you can use to get them more adaptable.
WordPress Password Protected Visibility Guide
When you select Password protected, you will get an option to enter your password:
The blog post will still present up on your blog archive list (that means anonymous visitors will even see it in the list), only now it will have Protected: display before the blog post’s title:
Anyone who clicks on the job will see a login page:
Just after entering the password can people see the post.
All in all, it’s pretty outspoken. But here’s one cool tip that not a lot of people know about:
If you execute all the passwords on your private posts the same, a user can open all of those posts just by inserting the password once. So once they come to the password on the first post, all the additional posts will be available.
On the other hand, if you use several passwords, users will need to enter the password for each post with a different password.
Pretty cool, right?
By making the passwords the same (or different), you can quickly create multiple posts private and furthermore have detailed control over who has access.
WordPress Private Visibility Guide
If you decide to make a post or page Private slightly then Password protected, then the only people who will be capable of seeing the post on in users with the user role of Administrator:
Users who are logged in and must those user roles will be ready to see the post. The only distinction is that WordPress adds Private: in front of that post’s title (instead of Protected: like with the password example above):
Additionally, while you make a post Private, it will not give up on your blog archive page. Again, that’s another distinction from password protection.
If someone tries to reach the private post’s URL directly, they’ll see a standard 404 error page like this:
Like password protection, I own another neat trick for you to make this functionality more powerful:
If you need people other than administrators and editors to be able to see your private content, you can use a plugin called User Role Editor to give them that ability.
For example, to let normal logged in users see private posts, you can:
- Go to Users → User Role Editor
- Make sure that you view Subscriber in the drop-down
- Check the boxes for read_private_pages and read_private_posts
- Click Update to save your changes
Now, even your regular WordPress users will be able to see all of your private posts and pages (as long as they’re logged in).
How To Make the Private website using WordPress
Seldom, you might want to go beyond individual posts and pages to get your entire WordPress site private.
In that case, you have got a few options depending on your needs. If you:
- Want to make your site private while you’re performing maintenance, you’ll probably be best off using a WordPress maintenance plugin.
- Need a complicated private site where you’re able to accept payment in exchange for access to your site; then you’ll be best off with a WordPress membership plugin.
- Want a primary private site where users want to log in to see your content. All of you can use the My Private Site plugin that I will discuss below.
My Private Site is the most common private site plugin, so that’s why I’m going to use it for this tutorial on whereby to make your entire WordPress site private.
Make sure you install and animate the plugin first.
Step 1: Turn On Private Site Functionality
To get your site private after activating the plugin:
- Move to Settings → Private Site on your WordPress dashboard
- Check that box for Private Site
- Save your changes
At this time, your site is private. Anyone who isn’t already logged in will see the regular WordPress login page if people try to access any part of your site:
You should, however, configure a few additional settings to control how things work, though.
Step 2: Decide If People Can Register Themselves On Your Site
Succeeding, scroll down to the Allow Self-Registration section and choose whether or not to let people build an account on your site:
- If yourself check the box, your site is yet somewhat free because anyone can create an account to see your content.
- If you leave the box unchecked, you’ll want to manually create user accounts for all the people that you want to be ready to see your site.
Step 3: Control How Users Log In To Your Site
In the Landing Location and Custom Login sections, you can:
- Choose which page a user goes to after they log in
- Create your custom login page to use somewhat of the default WordPress login page
Step 4: (Optional) Make Some Pages Public
If you still require making some content on your site public, you can use the Visible Exclusions section to make:
- Your homepage public
- A specific piece of content public
- An entire category public (using the URL Prefix feature)
Final Thoughts On Making WordPress Private
If you need to make individual posts private, the core WordPress functionality is helpful and, with any of the tricks shared above, pretty flexible too.
To make your whole site private, you’ll need a plugin. My Private Site provides an excellent general option. But for more specific uses, you might be better off using a membership plugin, maintenance plugin, or maybe even a learning management system.