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How to Fix Custom Fields Not Showing in WordPress

Are you unable to find the custom fields option on your WordPress site? Custom field is an advance WordPress feature that helps you add custom content to your WordPress posts and pages by following various WordPress tutorials. In this article, we will show you how to easily fix custom fields not showing issue in WordPress.

Fix missing custom fields in WordPress

Fixing Custom Fields Not Showing Issue in WordPress

Custom fields are typically associated with WordPress post, pages, or custom post types. Often you will find custom fields mentioned in various WordPress tutorials around the web, but you will likely not see the custom fields option on your site specially if you recently started your WordPress blog.

In the past, custom fields were visible by default on the post edit screen of all WordPress sites. However since it is an advance feature, the WordPress core development team decided to hide custom fields by default for all new users in the WordPress 3.1 release.

They also made it easy for anyone to make them visible with just two clicks from within the post edit screen.

Simply create or edit an existing post / page, and then click on the ‘Screen Options‘ button at the top right corner of the screen. This will show you a menu with several options that you can show or hide on your post edit screen.

Go ahead and click on the checkbox next to ‘Custom Fields’ option.

Show custom fields

Note: If you don’t see the Custom Fields option on your site, then please scroll to the troubleshooting option below in the article.

You can now scroll down on the post edit screen, and you will notice a new meta box labeled ‘Custom Fields’ below your post editor.

Custom Fields box

Since WordPress remembers your display choice, it will continue to display the custom fields box whenever you are editing posts on your website.

You can use this box to add, edit, and delete custom fields and their values.

What are Custom Fields? What Can You Do with them?

By default, when you write a new post, page, or any content type, WordPress saves it into two different areas. The first part is the body of your content that you add using the post editor.

The second part is the information about that particular content. For example, title, author name, date / time, and more. This bit of information about the post is called metadata.

Apart from the default post metadata, WordPress also allows you to save custom metadata by using custom fields.

To learn more, see our beginner’s guide to WordPress custom fields with examples, tips, and tricks that you can use on your website.

WordPress developers use custom fields to store custom post metadata for your posts. For example, the All in One SEO plugin uses custom fields to store SEO settings for your posts.

However instead of using the default custom fields box shown above, these plugin developers create their own custom meta boxes. This makes it easier for users to input information.

If you want to create a custom meta box to easily input custom metadata, then see our guide on how to add custom meta boxes in WordPress.

Troubleshooting

Recently one of our readers came to us with a problem where the Custom Fields option was missing from the WordPress screen options. After some investigation, we were able to find the cause of the issue.

If your WordPress site is missing the custom fields option under the ‘Screen Options’ menu, then you need to check if you have the Advanced Custom Fields (ACF) plugin active on your site.

ACF is a very popular WordPress plugin that developers use to create custom meta boxes. ACF is running on over 1 million websites.

In ACF version 5.5.13, they added a setting to remove the default WordPress custom field metabox to speed up the load times on the post edit page. The idea being that you shouldn’t need the default metabox since you’re using ACF.

However if you need to have the default WordPress custom field metabox enabled, then you need to add the following code to your WordPress theme’s functions.php file.

add_filter('acf/settings/remove_wp_meta_box', '__return_false');

This will solve the custom fields option missing issue in WordPress.

We hope this article helped you fix the custom fields not showing issue on your WordPress site. You may also want to see our ultimate list of most useful WordPress tips, tricks, and hacks.

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Reader Interactions

35 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. i have ACFs that dont display on my home page. i know the ACF pro plug in needs to be updated. Would this result in why my fields aren’t displaying on my homepage?

    • That could be part of the issue. If you reach out to the plugin’s support they should be able to assist.

      Admin

  2. Thank you! Adding the filter to the functions file because of ACF was my issue, what a great help!

  3. So we have ACF running and have the “fix” in our functions.php file. The issue we are having is that the drop down field is only showing 148 entries and not displaying all of the custom fields. Is there something that is preventing them from not displaying all of the custom fields?

    • For that, you would want to reach out to ACF’s support to see possible reasons for this issue.

      Admin

  4. I spend a couple hours to solve this problem (find out why i don’t see that option in “Screen Options” menu).

    Thanks! :)

  5. Hello,

    Thanks for your tip.
    I’ve installed ACF, however still don’t see custom field checkbox.
    When I tried to paste the code I got following error message: syntax error, unexpected ‘add_filter’ (T_STRING)
    Could you please advise?

    Many Thanks!

  6. Hi. I have re-instated the custom fields. I can add new, but original fields are not showing in the back end (still displayed on website) so I cannot edit my content. Any ideas? Thanks

  7. Super. We were looking for the setting that was hiding the custom fields. We knew it was a setting but could find where. Thanks also for the bit of code, could come handy eventually.
    merci,
    Serge.

  8. Sadly, the add_filter code for the functions.php file did not work, so I’m off to find to try to solve the problem.

    • Thank you for letting us know, we’ll certainly keep an eye out for other solutions to recommend.

      Admin

  9. I lost a day of work trying to figure out why my custom metabox wasn’t showing. Then I checked the source code and it was there with the ‘hide’ class suffix. Thanks a lot ACF :(

    Thank you for the fix :)

  10. Just wanted to say thanks for the add_filter() trick in the troubleshooting section. A new client needed me to fix something on a site I’d never seen and this was what I finally needed.

  11. Thank you so much – this problem has been driving me mad! Your code for the functions file worked.

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