Customizing Your WordPress Administration Interface

You can optimize some of your WordPress administration and editing tasks by customizing the administration interface (also known as the WordPress backend) and utilizing a few time-saving shortcuts.

  • Power User Admin Navigation. Between some of the administration menus on the left-hand side, you will see horizontal lines with arrows. If you click one of these, you can minimize the administration menu navigation. To restore to the previous look, you can just click one of them again. Using this “power user” mode saves you some screen real estate, helps reduce distraction, saves you a few clicks, and reduces the need to scroll. Instead of clicking a parent menu name to open its submenus, you just have to hover over the icon, and the submenus for that parent menu item will appear directly to the right.
  • Admin Bar. The Admin Bar, which appears at the top of your administration screens and your public website when you are logged in, provides you with a number of shortcuts, saving you from having to click through as many menus. You can add a new page/post, access the Widgets menu, switch between administration menus for different websites, and more. It is especially useful if you accidentally close the tab/window containing your WordPress backend while visiting your public website.
  • Quick Edit. Instead of clicking on Edit for a given page or post, you may be able to use Quick Edit instead, and you would not have to leave the Edit Posts or Edit Pages screen. This is useful if you don’t need to change the body content, but just need to change certain attributes, such as the title, slug (URL), status (draft/published), categories, or tags.
  • Bulk Edit/Delete. In the Edit Posts and Edit Pages screens, you can use Bulk Actions to save time editing or deleting multiple posts/pages. You can change categories, authors, parent pages, status, and more.
  • Minimize Unused Panels. Most of the panels on your administration screens, including those on the Dashboard, can be minimized. Just mouse over the gray title bar and click the arrow in the upper right corner in order to minimize a given panel. Minimizing panels saves you some screen real estate and helps reduce distraction. To restore a panel, just click the arrow again. If you want to prevent panels from appearing at all, you may be able to hide them completely by using the Screen Options described below.
  • Screen Options. In the upper right of your administration screens, there is a light gray drop-down menu labeled “Screen Options.” Clicking on it will bring up a variety of options for the given administration menu. You can hide panels that you don’t use often (useful if you don’t use features like custom fields or revisions, and want to save screen space and loading time), increase the number of pages or posts in the list (useful if you have more than 20 pages or posts), change the number of visible columns, and more. You can always restore hidden panels later through the same Screen Options menu.
  • Post Box Size. In the post/page editor, you can drag the lower right hand corner of the editor to make it larger or smaller. You can also set the size manually in the Settings > Writing menu.
  • Default Post Category. If you typically assign most of your posts to the same category, you may want to set the default post category in the Settings > Writing menu.

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