How to Unpublish WordPress Pages & Posts

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Need to remove a page or post from your site?

There are five ways to hide or unpublish your posts and pages. With these different approaches, you can precisely control who sees your content.

How to completely unpublish a page or post

This simple method will hide the post from everyone but you.

First, login to your WordPress dashboard. Navigate to the post you want to unpublish, and locate the Publish meta box on the right side.

Screenshot of the post meta box for publishing

If the post/page is live, the Status will read “Published.” To unpublish the post:

  • Click the blue Edit link
  • Choose the Draft status
  • Click the OK button
  • Update the post
Making a published post a draft

The post will no longer be listed on the blog or any archive pages.

If you visit the post’s URL while you’re logged in as the admin, you will still see it. However, no one else can see it even if they’re logged into your site. Only the admin (and post author) can still see the post on its URL.

Pro tip: You can use the bulk actions in the Posts menu to make multiple posts into drafts at once.

How to remove a post from the blog

This method will remove a post from your blog while letting anyone with the direct URL visit it.

If you want to keep a post published but remove it from the blog, you can use the WP Hide Post plugin.

WP Hide Post

This WordPress plugin gives you a new meta box for controlling where individual posts display on your site.

Screenshot of the post visibility settings

There’s a similar group of settings added for pages too.

Page Visibility meta box

How to remove a page from the menu

This method removes a page from your menu while letting anyone with a direct URL visit it.

If you set a Page to Draft status, no one but you can visit it. However, you may want to remove all links to it while keeping it visible for any direct visits.

WordPress automatically creates a menu and adds every page to it. However, you can create a custom menu and control exactly which pages are listed.

This tutorial on creating and editing menus will show you how to do that.

How to hide a post/page for logged out visitors

This method will completely hide a post/page from anyone who isn’t logged in.

You can mark any post/page as “private,” so only members of your site can see it. Making a post private will remove it from the blog and show a 404 error on the URL if a non-logged in visitors views it.

To set a page as private:

  • Click the Edit link next to Visibility
  • Select Private
  • Click the OK button
  • Update the page
Making a page private

Pro tip: There’s also a way to share unpublished drafts, so only people with the special link can see it.

How to password protect a post/page

This method will keep a post displayed on the blog, but require all visitors to enter a password to view it (even logged in members).

Password-protecting any post or page is easy. You can follow this quick tutorial on password protection to employ it on your site now.

Create a draft without unpublishing

Lastly, if you just need to edit the page so you can republish it, then check out this tutorial:

How to Republish a WordPress Post for SEO & Traffic

You’ll learn how to create and edit a new draft of an existing page, so no one will see your changes until you publish the new draft over the old page.

Unpublishing and hiding pages

Were you able to give your page the right visibility?

The five methods above provide a great deal of control over who sees your posts and pages, but there’s always another solution with WordPress.

Is there another way you need to hide your posts? Did I miss a method for unpublishing content? Post a comment below.

Ben Sibley
Ben Sibley
This article was written by Ben Sibley. He is a WordPress theme designer & developer, and founder of Compete Themes.