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How to Add Multiple Authors (Co-Authors) for Posts in WordPress

Do you want to show multiple authors for a post in WordPress? Many websites often have multiple authors working on the same article. For example, on news websites sometimes multiple journalists contribute to a single story. In that case you may want to give credit to all the authors who worked on the post. In this article, we will show you how to allow multiple authors to be associated with a post in WordPress.

How to allow multiple authors to be associated with WordPress blog posts

First thing you need to do is install and activate the Co-Authors Plus plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Next, you need to edit the post or page where you want to credit multiple authors.

On the post edit screen, you will notice the new ‘Authors’ box just below the post editor.

By default, it will show the original author of the post. You can add additional authors by entering their name in the search box below.

The plugin will start showing users as you type. You need to select the user that you want to add as an author by clicking on it.

The selected author name will now appear below the original author name.

Multiple authors selected

You can continue adding more authors as needed. Once you are done, you can save or publish your post.

Showing Multiple Authors On Your WordPress Site

Unfortunately, the plugin does not automatically display multiple authors on your site. For that you’ll need to edit your theme files. If you haven’t done this before, then please see our guide on how to copy paste code in WordPress.

You’ll need to edit theme files with the code responsible for showing the author name for posts. This could be single.php, content.php, or a template tag in your theme’s functions.php file. See our tutorial on how to find which theme files to edit in WordPress.

You will be looking for the code with template tag the_author_posts_link() and you will need to replace it with the following code snippet.

if ( function_exists( 'coauthors_posts_links' ) ) {
    coauthors_posts_links();
} else {
    the_author_posts_link();
}

Here is how it looked it on our demo website.

Multiple authors attributed to a WordPress post

For more examples of template tags, please visit plugin’s website.

Adding Guest Authors to Your WordPress Site

By default, this plugin can only look up and show registered users on your website. What if you wanted to give credit to guest authors who do not have an account on your WordPress site?

There are multiple ways to accept user submitted posts in WordPress. You can create an account for authors, or you can accept posts directly from front-end of your website. See detailed instructions in our guide on how to allow users to submit posts to your WordPress site.

Co Authors Plus offers a simpler work around for that. It allows you to add guest authors without giving them access to the admin area or writing privileges on your website. Guest authors can send you their posts via email, and you can add them to your WordPress site.

Let’s see how to add guest authors in Co Authors Plus.

First, you need to head over to Users » Guest Authors page and click on the ‘Add New’ button at the top.

Adding a new guest author in WordPress

On the next screen, you need to provide author information such as name, email, website, etc. Once you are done, click on ‘Add new guest author’ button to save your changes.

Guest author details

That’s all you have successfully added a guest author.

Now you will be able to select them as author for posts on your WordPress site, just like you would select registered users.

We hope this article helped you learn how to allow multiple authors to be associated with a post in WordPress. You may also want to see our list of 21 plugins to efficiently manage WordPress multi-author blogs.

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Reader Interactions

24 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. For the site I am trying to use this plugin on, I don’t care about showing the multiple authors somewhere on my post. In fact, I am using it on a custom post type that does not show the authors on the front-end, anyway. What I need is for two authors to have the ability to edit the post in the back-end. When I set the plugin up, only the top author is able to view or edit the post. Do I still need to change the code to make it work? Or is there some other code that needs changed?

    • You would sadly need to reach out to the plugin’s support if it is not giving access to the coauthors to edit.

      Admin

  2. Guys,

    im having troubles with the name displayed on the post.

    for example i have added an author filling the fields how the pluging recommend. Display name Aaaa Bbbb, name Aaaa, surname Bbbb, email etc.

    And the post display “aaaa-bbbb” and don´t display name “Aaaa Bbbb”.

    Im using Zeen themme. Do you know what´s happening here?

    Thanks-

    • You would want to ensure that you replaced the correct tag in your theme’s files. If you reach out to your theme’s support they should be able to point you toward the correct template tag

      Admin

  3. I found the single.php file but it contains no “the_author_posts_link” line
    I’m using the poseidon theme
    Is the theme simply incompatible with the plugin?

    • Hi Cedric,

      Your theme may be using template parts, in that case you may need to edit the template references in single.php file. Many WordPress themes use their own template_tags to display author bio, in that case you will need theme author’s help to add this.

      Admin

  4. Hello sir,

    I want select 2 authors by default.

    When I have add new post the me as authors selected right…but I want 2 different author selected….

  5. Hi, always wondering how can I place the co-authors’ box below the articles. Using this plugin for many time but still only for the top name. Can you help me out? Thanks.

  6. I am not sure why anybody would promote this plug-in. The only real point of co-authors is for them to get public credit. A plug-in that only does the back-end and requires coding for the front-end defeats the point of a plug-in which is for people who don’t know how to do coding. That and they don’t keep it up to date anyway. How is this plug-in helpful?

    • In addition, the plugin performance has degraded since recent WP upgrades. It uses a wp_query using SQL_CALC_FOUND_ROWS, which, on large sites, causes huge processor overload. I’ve read good things about the BYLINES plugin, which has recently been acquired by the folks at PublishPress.

      But I’d love to explore other options as well to get around the problem.

  7. is there any one have idea about Genesis framework single.php file because i design my theme in Genesis framwork and there is only this code available genesis(); in single.php so how to add this code?

    if ( function_exists( ‘coauthors_posts_links’ ) ) {
    coauthors_posts_links();
    } else {
    the_author_posts_link();
    }

  8. Hi! So I installed the plugin and added the guest authors, but I can’t quite find where to insert the code. My site is ran by WordPress, so the only place I can insert code is in “additional CSS,” and this doesn’t seem to do anything. Any ideas?

    • Hi Ally,

      If you are running a self hosted WordPress.org site, then you will find the code in single.php, content.php, or a template tag in your theme’s functions.php file. On the other hand, if you are on WordPress.com, then you cannot directly edit the theme files. Please see our comparison of WordPress.org vs WordPress.com

      Admin

  9. Useful if you have only a few authors, but on large sites with hundreds of authors, this plugin is pretty much useless, especially if you have no idea who contributed to the post.

    I cant understand why you have to “search” for the authors. Shouldn’t this software be smart enough to know who contributed???

  10. I’m using a child theme of the SuperNews theme. I’ve searched the entire theme directory for any mention of the word ‘author’ and found none.

    How can I make it work if I don’t have that template tag in my theme?

  11. I cant seem to get it to work – my theme is “Premium” – but i cant seem to found what files to edit, i have put that command in functions.php –

    I can choose persons but it only show the “original” poster on my post.

    I have try to look for those files you mention, but they doesnt exist, or i dont exactly sure what i should look for

    My Theme is “Gauge”

  12. i have installed Co Authors Plus and added guest author successfully,
    after assigning post to guest author, when i click on author name, instead of showing all posts from that guest author, it redirects to main home page

  13. This plugin’s functionality should be baked into WordPress. It’s staggering that WordPress continues to tout itself as a CMS (no longer just a blog), but it has no concept of groups, or multiple authors working on a piece of content. Staggering. Good plugin though. Thanks

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