Need a WordPress plugin to allow users to post on front end? Formidable Forms can help you not only post, but also edit WordPress posts from the front end. We'll show you how in four easy steps!
Is editing content a big part of your regular site maintenance? Opening up your WordPress dashboard every time you need to make edits can be annoying. Furthermore, you might want to enable your users to edit their own content as well.
Fortunately, there's a tool that can be this kind of WordPress text editor and more. By using Formidable Forms, you can let any user be a front-end post editor.
In this article, we'll take a look at why you might want to allow users to post and edit on the front end. Then we'll show you how to do this using Formidable Forms. Let's dive right in!
Why you might want to use front-end post editing
If you've been using the platform for a while, you probably already know there are a ton of different WordPress editor plugin options. Various programs can help you do different things. However, many share a common flaw: they only enable editing on the back-end of your site.
This may not seem like a big deal at first. After all, you likely spend time on your WordPress dashboard already. Nevertheless, front-end editing offers some important benefits.
For example, you probably have an admin account to manage your site. However, you might also have a user profile that doesn't have the same access. Therefore, you may be wasting time switching between accounts just to make minor changes to your content.
Furthermore, your audience might also be frustrated without a WP front-end text editor, especially if you enable users to submit content such as questions, articles, directory listings, or diary entries. Without a WordPress editing plugin for the front end, they won't be able to change that content after it's sent.
Therefore, editing from the front end isn't just about your own ease of use. It can also give a WordPress user front-end access to their own work. This can in turn make your audience feel more engaged with your WordPress website, and transform it into a custom application.
How to allow users to post from the front-end in WordPress (3 steps)
Fortunately, editing posts from the front-end is simple. All you'll need is the premium version of Formidable Forms. Then, you can enable editing for posts, pages, and custom post types (CPTs).
Step 1: Create the essential parts of a post, page, or CPT
First, you'll add front-end posting features to a form. While it's easier to start off with submitting content in the form, you can also complete this process with unrelated posts and pages. If you have non-affiliated content, you can create an entry from it instead.
Then, go to the form you want to use for post editing. We'll be doing this with a contact form as an example. So, we'll go to Formidable Forms → Forms → Contact Us. Then we'll select Settings → Actions & Notifications, and click on Create Post:
This will open a new menu. You can start by adding an Action Name. This is only visible on the back end, so it won't affect your front-end editor form. However, it might be helpful for your personal organization.
Next, select the Post Type. It can be a post, a page, or any of your CPTs. You can then select which form field will act as the Post Title from the drop-down menu.
Afterward, continue on to Post Content. Here is where you'll select if you're using a single field or multiple. If you choose Customize post content, you'll be able to pick exactly which field you'll include. However, keep in mind that you'll need Formidable Views to do so.
Here's what our contact form example looks like right now:
Yours should look similar, but with your own settings. You can build the form however you'd like with the drag and drop builder. You can add rich text fields, plain text, and file upload fields for the featured image. There are more options that we'll explore in the next step.
Step 2: Customize the post settings
The following options can all be left as-is. Formidable Forms will still act as a front-end editor for WordPress. Nevertheless, you may want to change them to customize your experience. Here's what the default options will look like:
First, you can select a field to act as a sample of the blog post under Excerpt. You might also choose to set a password if you want the front-end editing experience to be more secure. However, keep in mind that you will have to add a password field to the form first.
Next on the list for this WordPress editing plugin is setting a Post Date. If you have a field for dates on your form, you may choose to use that instead of the default submission date.
Afterward, you can select an option under Post Status to choose what happens after users submit their edits. If you want to leave this up to your users, select Create New Dropdown Field.
Finally, you can categorize edits with Taxonomies/Categories. You can also add complex fields with the Custom Fields section. This can be useful if you want to allow edits with images or metadata.
When you're happy with your changes, you can click Update to save your work. Then move on to the final step.
Step 3: Turn on front-end editing permissions
Next, you'll turn on editing permissions in the form. Formidable Forms has a simple way to make form entries editable, making it an ideal WordPress editing plugin.
Navigate to the form you've been working on, and go to Settings → Permissions. Find the option titled Allow front-end editing of entries. You can then adjust it based on specific user roles as necessary:
Step 4: Add the form and edit shortcode on a page
Lastly, you'll need a way for users to get the link to edit posts. You've got a few options, depending on how you'd like your site to work.
The easiest way is to limit the form to just one entry per user. This way, all you have to do is publish the form on a page. Then, users will always see the post they submitted loaded into the form. It's ready and waiting to be edited.
If your users can submit multiple posts, you can add a quick list of all the posts they can edit, along with the form:
In this example, replace 25 in both shortcodes with the ID of your form.
Save your work. Now if your user account has submitted something in the form, you'll see a list of front-end edit links right above the form.
That's it! Your form is now editable on the front end. Keep in mind, however, that only those who have the permissions you selected earlier will be able to do so.
There are a number of other ways to allow front-end editing including in-place editing, adding an edit link in the theme template file, inserting a table list with edit links, and more. Read more about the options to set up front-end editing.
Wrapping up on using our WordPress editing plugin
There are a lot of WordPress editor plugins available. However, many lack the essential feature of front-end editing. Fortunately, you can choose Formidable Forms as your best WordPress post editor, and easily add front-end editing for your users. Now, you won't need a team of WordPress experts to build a post editor to create and edit on the front-end.
In this article, we covered four steps to add this functionality:
- Create a basic post from your form of choice.
- Customize the post settings.
- Turn on front-end editing permissions.
- Add the form and edit link shortcode on a page.
If you're looking for a WordPress front-end editor, Formidable Forms can help you out. Check out some of our other features to see what else Formidable can do!
Don Francis says
This page feels very badly written to me. I kept asking myself 'why would I do that?' and 'what does that achieve?' and 'how does that makes sense?'. I don't think I am stupid but that set of instructions feels like it has skipped over too many important elements of reasoning.
Sorry to hear this post wasn't helpful to you. This was written to be a broad overview of the process to demonstrate how Formidable Forms can be used to create and edit posts, pages, and custom post types.
Our plugin certainly isn't the only way to do this, and if you have a better workflow, there is no need to switch to our product, but if our plugin can save you from installing and managing multiple plugins that do the same things, you may want to look into it.
At least address his concern about how to improve the view of the post. The idea is not using a different plug in but how can we make this look better.
Why do all these articles have a comment highlighted in yellow saying that the plugin is free but, buried in the text, the very thing that is promised in the title is found to be only available in the paid for version???
I think in the US this is referred to as bait and switch (or am I misunderstanding that term?).
I appreciate that it is only costing me a couple of minutes of my time per article but it makes me very unlikely to want to investigate your plugin.