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Fixing the Read More Tag Problem in WordPress Static Pages

WordPress has two ways of showing excerpts in a blog. One is by using the_excerpt() tag in your themes, and the other method is by using the more tag. The more tag allows you to specify where the cut off point is in a post while writing a post which makes it easy for the editor and allow you to show teaser content and such. However the more tag is used only on the home page which shows the latest posts. It does not work in Pages. Recently we encountered this issue and thanks to the WordPress forums we found the solution. If you want to turn on the read more tags in pages for showing partial posts, use the following code inside the loop:

global $more;
$more = 0;
//The code must be inserted ahead of the call to the content

<?php the_content('Continue Reading'); ?>

That’s it. If any of you theme designers ever get into this issue, then this should be a quick fix.

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Reader Interactions

42 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. I sort of understand installing bits of code in the .php file – so if this is a route to accomplish what I want to have happen I’ll do the necessary learning….
    Meanwhile, here’s what I’d like the “More” tab to do:
    My site is composed of pages. There is a posts section but that’s not where the rubber hits the road.
    These pages are built out of separate text blocks, each with it’s own clear heading, so there’s really no question of what each block or section is about. I’d like each of those blocks to only display the first few sentences and then have the “read more” link. When a user clicks, I want the remaining text to “unfold” below the first few sentences. I DO NOT want the user to be re-directed to a different page or even section of the same page. I want the users experience to be intuitive and fluid. They will be able to scan down the page of topics and when one appeals, click the “more” tab and finish reading the section. Will the technique described here do that?
    Many thanks in advance.

  2. I am a little bit of a newbie and was wondering what you meant by putting the above code in the loop, could you explain that to me.
    Much appreciated


  3. I’d just like some clarification, since I currently can’t get either the more tag or the excerpt to work on my blog posts. You state, “However the more tag is used only on the home page which shows the latest posts. It does not work in Pages.” My blog posts are not on my static home page (“front page”), they are on my blog page which is the “posts page.” Does this mean the more tag should be working in my posts? Or is the “posts page” a Page in which the tag won’t work? I’m using the Sela theme, if that helps.

  4. Hi I’m trying to figure out where I need to insert the code. I’m using the tesseract theme and beaver builder for building my pages. I have looked into the editor under appearance but am unable to locate where I need to insert the code. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    • Sorry have tried this in the text editor where I want to place the read more tag and tried entering the code under the text version not the visual where you can see the code for the paragraph e.g. centre placement and font etc.

      • If you figured out how to do this and where exactly to put what code, I would very much appreciate if you can let me know what you did.

  5. I tried to add read more tag on my home page , but it is not working. It will be great if you could help me

  6. Sorry did not show code placement in submission.

    “” Was placed immediately before the 2nd paragraph.

    ” Was placed after the 1st paragraph.

  7. I’m running the Blog-in-blog plugin that gives you a short-code to place categories on any normal WP page you want.
    At this point I truly am a beginner, with this magnitude of a problem. I do know some HTML and CSS, but PHP is way out of my ball park. I have no idea what a “a custom page template,” is or ” know how to use the loop to display a list of posts on that page”. So what do I do now? Is there a quick fix or do I have to dive in and learn how this plugin works so that I can fix it myself?

    • This is not related to this article. We will try to help you out anyways.

      The plugin you mentioned hasn’t been updated in two years. The plugin author has abandoned it and you shouldn’t be using it on your website. Try to find an alternate plugin that does the same thing.


      • So far, besides the more tag, the plugin has been working great. It may not have needed any updates but I’m not one to speak about such things.
        My problem right now is the more tag, not the pluggin. I still need to find a way to make the more tag link work properly.

  8. So the ‘Read More’ shows up ok but not until the end of each post after displaying the entire post instead of only showing a portion of it.

    1. Homepage (index.php) – 2. Collectibles Page (controlled by pages.php) – 3. Post (controlled by single.php)

    When I add a new post it shows up on the homepage (1.) correctly – yay great awesome perfect whatever else I could add.

    When the post shows up on the Collectibles page (2.) for example here I see the ENTIRE POST with images and text and all that with the Read More Here! waaaaaaaayyyyyy down at the bottom of the post information. Not cool.

    I want the Collectibles page to appear Just like the homepage with a short EXERPT with a link that says Read More Here! so the viewer can click the link and go and read the ENTIRE post on the landing page (3.).

    See the homepage shows all of the new posts older post etc. But I have a news page just for news, and MovieTV page for Movies and TV info, and a Collectibles page just for collectibles. And so on and so on.

    Maybe this is not possible…I am asking for something too complicated.

    Where on what page should the information you provided reside? Does it matter where in the page of the code this should go? I tried all different options and its not doing what has been explained.
    Does it go in line 1, line 20, before post(), after post(), before/after what?

    Maybe if someone could explain it to me like I am sooooooo dumb it will click.

  9. Ok, I’m a real WP beginner and this is my issue: on my static home page my blog posts are shown as excerpts, which is exactly as I want it and when you click on one of the posts, it displays the entire blog post which great again. BUT when I click on my categories, it shows all the relevant blog posts in it’s entire length and I want the posts to show as excerpts as well. How on earth do I do that? Would this code fix that? And if so, (and here it comes) where do I put it (reading the comments below I’m almost afraid to ask :))

  10. I am trying to put a read more… link to my Home Page. However, I can see that the above code worked well in one specific page. But I can see that it is not making any changes on the home page. I am using flexibility 3 theme. Can you please help?

  11. Short and to the point. This is my first attempt at designing a theme and you just resolved my issue in one easy step, honestly took less than10 seconds. Cheers.

  12. The instructions are clear, but in what file to insert the code? WP don’t permit me editing the code of any page, only to write a content. If someone could shed some light on this issue…

    • You would need to use FTP if you can’t edit the files from wp-admin.

      Also this code would only be needed if you are using page-template to display an archive of other posts. In that case, you would need to paste the code inside the loop. This is an intermediate level tutorial meant for theme designers.


      • O.K., I see, this concerns only archives, but what about regular pages, sometimes I publish long stories and I would like to offer only a glimpse at the start of the page and with “read more” to evoke the rest of the content. What is the remedy in this situation? What files should I look for? Thanks in advance.

        • I’ve the same problem.

          With posting of long and ongoing training in book-type of form I need to find a way to add “read more” where the page/post ends for the lesson.

          I’m using/intend to the 2013 webpage and header to do the posting.

          I’m not computer literate in the way these other guys are. When they these high valuting terms I haven’t got a clue what they’re talking about.

  13. Hey there, I used this fix and it worked….but now the snippet of my post that would’ve been cut off attaches itself to the bottom of the post, and Continue reading doesn’t create and excerpt, it just places a link and continues onto the full post. Any suggestions? Thanks!!

  14. The problem with too many people will to make a blog post is when they decide to give people advices half of their explanation is missing. If a person knew nothing about wordpress and wanted this to work for him or her, how would what you’ve written help them?
    If you really wanted to help people you’d take the time to explain where the code has to be written and how you get to where the code is written.

      • I read this and I fall into the “I googled for this problem but don’t understand the answer”.

        Can you please explain where in wp I would put this? And then what do I put on my page?

        So close to a solution but I have no idea how to do this..


      • How arrogant of you.

        At the very least you should identify the file to be edited and the loop you’re discussing.

        Saying “nyah nyah, go learn more about WordPress” is childish.

        • Bob, sorry that you think we are being arrogant, but hopefully this response will clarify our first response.

          The file that you will paste the code in will vary from one person to another. This problem will only occur when you try to create a “custom page template” where you want to display other posts with content teasers. This functionality is NOT needed in most cases because WordPress has various ways to display archives (i.e categories, tags, dates). Only in custom cases, you will want to have this functionality.

          It is impossible for us to determine what you are going to call your custom page template file. It could be joes-infinity-content.php for all that matter.

          Furthermore, this is not for beginners. Because in order for you to run into the issue we are trying to solve in the post above, you have to learn how to do few other “code” related things (i.e create a custom page template, and know how to use the loop to display a list of posts on that page). By the time you have done all that, then you would know exactly which file you need to put the code in, and exactly where the loop is.

          This problem does not exist by default. The fact of the matter is that a beginner will NOT have this issue to begin with unless you do the two other dev things. Hopefully that makes sense.

    • I could not agree MORE. This is for beginners? You don’t remember you days as a beginner or you are being too lazy. If you are going to do something, then do is Right or don’t.

      • Hello Phil,

        Not sure if you read the comment reply we had for Bob. This is not for beginners. Because in order for you to run into the issue we are trying to solve in the post above, you have to learn how to do few other “code” related things (i.e create a custom page template, and know how to use the loop to display a list of posts on that page). By the time you have done all that, then you would know exactly which file you need to put the code in, and exactly where the loop is.

        This problem does not exist by default. The fact of the matter is that a beginner will NOT have this issue to begin with unless you do the two other dev things. Hopefully that makes sense.


        • Guess the website domain name threw me off, “” I thought perhaps this website would explain wordpress PHP in a way that a “beginner” could understand. I do use HTML5 and CSS3 so I am not a complete novice. I would like to learn how to design WP too.

          So perhaps you could clarify, is ” something in one of the templates in Appearance>Editor?

          I have read in WordPress docs that the “read more” is not offered by default in pages, but is available for landing pages. Since the “read more” attribute is available in my landing page editor, I have applied it and see it in my text editor I need to understand why it doesn’t display when I refresh the page.

        • Matoca,

          A page is actually a single post in itself. The more tag, is supposed to be used to display an excerpt from an entry and then display a link back to full entry. However, when a user is already on a single page then the more tag will not work because the page will by default show the full content.

          However, if you are using a custom template then you can get the more tag to work by adding this code in your custom landing page template:

          global $more;
          $more = 0;
          //The code must be inserted ahead of the call the_content, but AFTER the_post()
          <?php the_content('Continue Reading'); ?>

          This code will only work if you are using your landing page to display a set of posts or pages. It will not work for the page itself because the user is already on the page.

    • As a Word Press newbie. What is a custom wordpress landing page template? I got here searching for adding more to a wordpress page. Not designing a custom template to display a single page.

      Have yet to get more to work in anything I’ve done on WordPress. Blog posts nor pages.

  15. Sorry got links in there again…

    Thanks for the reply… I agree it is supposed to do that but it doesnt….

    I setup a test page here westbankfreehomeinfo (dot) com/read-more-test/

    and as you can see the “continue reading” link shows fine with a link url of westbankfreehomeinfo (dot) com/read-more-test/#more-125

    but when you click on it the additional text doesn’t show up

    Thanks so much for your help


    • You are not using it properly. This trick will not work when you try to show the content of page X on Page X. This trick will only work when you are trying to display excerpts of Page X on Page Y. Hope that helps.


      • OK… cool… I’m sorry but I am not sure how to do that. Where do I put the link to take them from page X to page Y? Thanks so much for your patience with me on this…


  16. Hi there I left a comment yesterday trying to get help on the “read more” tag. I left a link to my site but think maybe you deleted my comment because you thought I was hoping for a backlink…

    I truly need help with this so will try again with no website address… when I add the code to the “continue reading” link does appear on my page and the content ends where it is supposed to but when I click on “continue reading” the additional content does not appear…

    I am sure I am just missing a step somewhere but cant figure it out… could you please help me understand how I get the rest of the content to show up once the link is clicked???



  17. You guys, rock!
    I’ve been looking for a solution for days now and yours is the first one that actually works!

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