Are you looking for a way to have user-submitted content on your WordPress site?
Allowing people to submit content such as guest posts, pictures, and videos helps you publish more content on your site and grow your audience.
In this article, we will show you how to easily allow users to submit blog posts to your WordPress site.
Why Allow Users to Submit Posts on Your WordPress Site?
User-generated content is very useful in attracting new website visitors and growing your business.
You can allow users to submit guest posts, add images to your gallery, or create new business listings in your business directory.
This way, you’ll get more content for publishing on your WordPress blog and cover different topics in your niche. It also helps in increasing your readership and getting different perspectives on important topics.
With user-generated content, you can even create a community and give them a platform to share their views and ideas. Moreover, adding high-quality content to your WordPress website can also improve your search engine rankings.
Having said that, let’s look at the three ways to allow users to submit posts on your WordPress site without writing any code.
If you don’t like the video or need more instructions, then you can use the links below to pick a method of your choice:
Method 1: Front-end WordPress Post Submissions With WPForms
If you want your users to submit posts from the front end of your WordPress website without visiting the admin area, then this method is for you.
It is the best WordPress contact form plugin on the market that makes it super easy to create forms using a drag-and-drop builder.
Note: WPForms also has a free version. However, you’ll need the pro plan of the plugin to unlock the Post Submissions addon.
Upon activation, visit the WPForms » Settings page from the WordPress admin sidebar to enter your license key.
You can get this information from your account on the WPForms website. Once you’ve entered the key, click the ‘Verify Key’ button.
After verification, head over to the WPForms » Addons page from the WordPress dashboard.
From here, scroll down to ‘Post submissions addon’ and click on the ‘Install Addon’ button.
WPForms will now install and activate the Post Submissions addon for you. You will see the Status as active when it’s installed.
Now, you are ready to create a post-submission form on your website.
To start, simply go to the WPForms » Add New page from the admin area. This will take you to the ‘Select a Template’ page, where you need to provide a name for your form.
After that, simply choose the ‘Blog Post Submission Form’ template from the list.
WPForms will now launch the template in its form builder. Here, you will notice a form preview in the right corner of the screen and field options in the left column.
You can now easily add new fields from the panel on your left, remove existing fields, and rearrange their order using the drag-and-drop builder.
WPForms lets your users select post categories, add featured images, post excerpts, and even add custom fields.
You can also edit form fields by clicking on them. This will give you options to rename a field, change its format, add a description, edit its size, enable conditional logic, and more.
Once you are satisfied with the form, click on the ‘Settings’ tab in the left menu.
Now, from the ‘General’ settings tab, you can rename your form, add a description, edit the text of the submit button, enable dynamic fields, enable AJAX form submission, and more.
You can also disable storing entry information of users in the WordPress database by toggling the ‘Disable storing entry information in WordPress’ switch in this section.
After that, switch to the ‘Spam Protection and Security’ tab from the left column.
By default, WPForms will enable the option of anti-spam protection. This is because it helps prevent people from submitting spam blog posts.
However, you can disable this option by toggling the ‘Enable anti-spam protection’ switch to inactive. Keep in mind that we do not recommend disabling spam protection in your forms.
For detailed instructions, please see our tutorial on how to block contact form spam in WordPress.
Next, you can go to the ‘Notifications’ tab and edit the email on which you’ll receive a notification when someone submits a form.
WPForms will use your admin email as default.
However, you can change that to any other email, and if you’d like to receive notifications on multiple emails, then simply separate them using a comma.
For more details, please see our tutorial on how to send confirmation emails after WordPress form submission.
After that, go to the ‘Confirmations’ tab to set up a message your users will see when they submit a form.
You can show a message, display a page, or redirect users to a specific URL using the ‘Confirmation Type’ dropdown menu.
Next, switch to the ‘Post Submissions’ tab, where you can map each field to the respective post fields in WordPress. WPForms does an excellent job of matching the fields in the form template.
By default, user-submitted posts will be saved as ‘Drafts’ pending review. However, you can also change the post type and allow users to submit content to your custom post types.
After that, don’t forget to click on the ‘Save’ button in the top right corner of the screen to save your form.
Now, you can click the close button (x) to exit the form builder and add the form to your website.
Add the Blog Post Submission Form to Your Website
First, you need to open up an existing or new page/post where you want to add the blog post submission form.
Once you’re there, click the ‘Add Block’ (+) button at the top left corner of the screen to open the block menu.
From here, locate and add the WPForms block to the page/post.
Next, you can select your post submission form from the dropdown in the WPForms block.
Now, save or publish your page, and then visit your website to see the post submission form in action.
Method 2: Accept User-Generated Content with User Submitted Posts Plugin
If you are looking for a free way to add a blog submission form to your website, then this method is for you.
Upon activation, head over to the Settings » User Submitted Posts page from the WordPress admin area and expand the ‘Plugin Settings’ tab.
From here, you can select the fields you want to display on the post-submission form and hide any field you don’t want users to see.
You can also choose a default author for all user-submitted content. However, we recommend that you create a new guest user on your WordPress site and assign all user-submitted posts to that user.
You can also allow users to upload images and set a limit on the number of images and maximum image size. You can even set a user-uploaded image as the featured image.
After reviewing all plugin settings, click on the ‘Save Settings’ button to store your changes.
You are now ready to add the user-submitted posts form to your website.
Add the User-Submitted Posts Form to Your Website
First, open up an existing or new page where you want to add the user-submitted posts form in the block editor.
Once you’re there, click the ‘Add Block’ (+) button in the top left corner and then add the Shortcode block to the page.
After that, add the following shortcode into the block:
You can now save or publish your page and visit it to see your user-submitted posts form in action.
Method 3: Allowing Users to Register and Submit Posts in WordPress
WordPress comes with built-in user roles and capabilities that allow you to run a multi-author WordPress site.
You can allow users to register on your site and create content using the WordPress admin interface with limited capabilities.
First, you need to enable user registration on your WordPress site.
For this, visit the Settings » General page from the admin sidebar and check the ‘Anyone can register’ option next to the Membership label.
After that, choose ‘Author’ or ‘Contributor’ as the default user role from the dropdown menu.
Finally, don’t forget to click on the ‘Save Changes’ button to store your changes.
Users can now register on your WordPress site by visiting the WordPress login and registration pages. You can even create a custom user registration form in WordPress.
Once registered, users will be able to log in to your WordPress site and submit posts as authors.
Problems with this method:
Many beginners find this method a bit difficult for different reasons.
For example, if you are using two-step authentication on your WordPress site, then your users may find it difficult to log in.
Many websites password-protect the WordPress admin directory. Allowing users to register and use the WordPress admin area means you will have to share that password with them.
Registered users with author roles can see what other posts you have on your website.
Moreover, this method is not completely secure as users can also install malware on your website.
To prevent this from happening, you may want to see our ultimate WordPress security guide.
If these issues bother you, you can use methods #1 or #2 to allow users to submit WordPress posts without logging in to the admin area.
Bonus: Style Your User Post Submission Form With WPForms
With WPForms, you can also style your form so that it can attract more users and encourage them to submit posts or images on your website.
You can even customize the form according to your brand design to improve user experience and build trust among your audience.
To style your post submission form, all you will have to do is visit the WPForms » Settings page from the WordPress admin sidebar and toggle the ‘Use Modern Markup’ option to ‘On’.
After that, click the ‘Save Settings’ button to store your changes.
Next, visit the post or page where you have added your post submission form and open the block panel on the right side of the screen.
Here, you will see different options to change the field styles, sizes, and colors for your form. You can also change the background color of the form fields from the right.
Once you are done, don’t forget to click the ‘Update’ or ‘Publish’ button to store your settings.
For more detailed instructions, you can see our tutorial on how to customize and style your WordPress forms.
We hope this article helped you learn how to allow users to submit posts to your WordPress site. You may also want to see our guide on how to start your own podcast or our comparison of the best business phone services for small businesses.