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How to Change Author URL Slug and Base in WordPress

Do you want to change the author url slug and base in WordPress?

WordPress comes with built-in support for SEO friendly URL structure, also known as pretty permalinks. This feature allows you to choose URLs for your posts, pages, and categories by editing their slugs.

This feature also creates pretty links for author pages. However, there is no option for you to customize the author URL.

In this article, we will show you how to easily change the author URL slug and base in WordPress.

Easily change the author URL slug and base

What is a URL Slug and URL Base?

In WordPress terminology, a slug is a title of a publicly viewable page in WordPress formatted to be used in URLs.

It looks like this:

https://example.com/author/syed-balkhi/

In the example above, syed-balkhi is the slug and author is the base.

While users can change the slug and base for posts, pages, categories, and tags, its not possible to change the author URL in WordPress.

If you wanted to use ‘contributor’ instead of ‘author’ or if you wanted to change the author slug altogether, then you’re in the right place.

Let’s see how you can easily change author URL slug and base in WordPress.

Changing The Author Slug in WordPress

First thing you need to do is install and activate the Edit Author Slug plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, this plugin will add a group of options to each user profile page.

If you want to edit the slug of a user on your site, then you need to go to Users » All Users page. Next, click on the ‘Edit’ link below a username.

Edit user profile

This will take you to the Edit User screen. Simply scroll down to ‘Edit Author Slug’ section, and you will see a number of choices that you can use as author slug. You can even enter a custom slug.

Edit author slug

Once you have made the changes, click on the ‘Update User’ button and preview your site.

Now when you click on the author name in a post to view the author page, you will see that it is using the author slug you choose for them.

Changing Author Base

If you’re building a site where you want to change the author base from /author/ to something else, then you can do that as well with this plugin.

Simply head over to the Settings » Edit Author Slug page. Here you will see an option to change the author base and even choose different author base for users with different user roles.

Change author URL base

Once you are finished, click on the save changes button to store your settings. You can now preview your site and click on the author link to see the changes in action.

Setting up Redirects for SEO Purposes

Changing author slugs and base on an established website can have negative SEO ramifications especially if your author archives are indexed.

People coming to author pages from search engines will see a 404 error message. To avoid this, you need to set up redirects from old URLs to new author slug and base.

First, you need to install and activate the Redirection plugin.

Upon activation, head over to Tools » Redirection page. You’ll be greeted by the plugin’s set up wizard. You can follow the on-screen instructions to continue set up or click on the ‘Manual Install’ link to skip it.

Redirection wizard

Next, you will reach the Redirection page. From here, scroll down to the ‘Add new redirect’ section. You need to add the old author page URL as the source and the new author URL page as the target.

Redirect author page

Click on the ‘Add redirect’ button to save your changes.

The plugin will now automatically redirect visitors coming to the old author page to the new URL.

Now if you have also changed the author base, then you will need to dynamically detect those URLs and redirect them.

Let’s suppose you changed the author URL base to ‘contributor’. This is how you will set up the redirect.

Setting up a base redirect

Source: https://example.com/author/(.*)$
Target: https://example.com/contributor/$1

If you selected the author URL base to be created using the user role, then you will need to do this for every user role, except when the user role itself is ‘author’.

To learn more about redirects, see our guide on how to set up redirects in WordPress.

We hope this article helped you change author slug and base in WordPress. You may also want to see our list of most wanted WordPress tips, tricks, and hacks.

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27 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Thank you for the information. But can I delete the plugin after changing the author’s URL slug? Or, the changed URL will also be deleted with this?

    • We would recommend checking out the plugin’s FAQ as they cover when you are able to remove the plugin or when you would be unable to.

      Admin

  2. Seems like this is outdated? I cannot find “Edit author slug” when I go to Edit user profile (I am logged in as Admin). Any new tips for this?

    • You would want to ensure the plugin is installed and activated for the section to be visible.

      Admin

  3. Thank you so much! I had no idea this plugin existed. Now, I have both more professional-looking (and SEO-friendly) author slugs and my usernames are fully private, so I don’t have to worry about would-be hackers. It was the one thing my security plugin didn’t seem to deal with, so I’m very pleased.

    I can also confirm that this plugin works with the latest version of WordPress, even though it technically hasn’t been tested for it (last update was a year ago). I guess when a plugin works, it works.

  4. Thanks for this post! My author slug was something like myname_somerandomcharcter and since it was my username i couldn’t even change it and all my posts had this author slug. SEO analysis would reveal this slug as SEO unfriendly URL. Now I have changed it using this plugin! Thanks again!

  5. Great article, I have a problem though.

    I set a custom structure in the permalink settings to article/%postname%/. However it also affects my author pages and now I’m left with article/author/%author%.

    Please can you help?

  6. Hi there

    Thanks for this article. Is it possible to do the following:
    [URLs are examples]

    I have a site xyz.com. Under the URL xyz.com/site1/site2 i have the posts from wordpress. If i open now the Post the url is like xyz.com/{postname} but i’d like to have xyz.com/site1/site2/{postname}

    Can you help me?

    BR
    Phil

    • You are only able to create a URL which consists of the PRIMARY category and the post name.
      Head over to Settings->Permalinks and choose “custom structure”. In the your can click on the buttons below the input field or paste the following:
      /%category%/%postname%/

  7. Quick question about old URLs and search engines. Since I’ve been using this site for about 11 years, I know the old author URLs are in the search engines and possibly other places as well.

    Shouldn’t we add a redirect to .htaccess so all old links are redirected to the new author URL?

    Thank you for your advice.
    -Matt

  8. You add this in your theme function.php
    global $wp_rewrite;
    $wp_rewrite->author_base = “member”; // or whatever
    $wp_rewrite->flush_rules();

  9. OMG, a lifesaver! A hacker used my exact (and weird) username. I finally figured out that it was being displayed in author/username (even though Woo Canvas asks me how I want to display my name), and this is the only post (I’ve been searching hours) to offer a simple solution for a non-programmer. I love you, WPBeginner….

  10. Must Plugin be used to change User Slug, too many plugin can really cause your wordpress site to become slow in loading

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