Way back when I managed the HubSpot Service Blog, I had a guest author come to me with a great idea for a blog post. She and her colleague wanted to co-write a piece about how HubSpot created its customer journey map.

I loved the idea, but when it came time to designate an author for the byline, my guest authors looked puzzled. They assumed they would both be included on the byline as authors of this post.

Here’s the problem. At the time, our blog software only permitted one author per post. So — long story short I had to create a completely new author bio that included both writers’ names.

Why am I telling you this story?

If you own or manage a WordPress site, you may have encountered this problem, too. But here’s the catch: you can work around this limitation using a WordPress plugin.

In this post, we’ll provide you with a list of plugins you can use to add multiple authors to your web pages and blog posts. We'll also provide a few plugins that are extremely handy if you're managing multiple authors contributing to your site.Grow Your Business With HubSpot's Tools for WordPress Websites

If you're in a bit of a hurry or looking for something specific, use the jump links below to find exactly what you're looking for. 

Why do you need a plugin to add co-authors?

The simple answer is: you can't add them without one. WordPress's default functionality doesn't support co-authors on posts. Without a plugin, you can only add one author per post.

That's why we've compiled this list of plugins so you can find the right tool for your WordPress website. Read on to learn more about each one of these plugins, their specific features, and why you might want to install them on your site.

1. Molongui Author Box

Price: Free, with paid plans available

Molongui - Multiple Authors-WordPress plugin

Molongui Author Box offers some quintessential features that you might expect with a multi-author WordPress plugin. It lets you add and customize an author box for each post where you can include the author's name, bio, and social media sharing icons. You can also assign multiple authors in each box, so all of your writers are given equal credit for a piece.

One notable feature of this plugin is its guest contributor capabilities. You don't have to create a brand new WordPress user for each guest author who writes for you. Instead, you can use the "Guest" feature to attribute pieces to external contributors without creating a WordPress user.

What we like about this plugin:

This plugin offers a host of features to help streamline co-author and multi-author management, and the free version lets you try before you buy to see if Molongui is the best fit for your site.

What we don't like about this plugin:

While having a free plan is great to get users in the door, it’s missing a few key features, such as 1-click guest author duplication and post byline customization. The idea here is to get users on board with purchasing the full product, but that can be a bit frustrating when you’re just getting started.

2. PublishPress Capabilities

Price: Free, with paid plans available

Publish Press WordPress Multiple Author Plugin

PublishPress is a useful plugin if you have marketers doubling as writers for your website. Rather than being limited to WordPress's default user roles, this tool lets you customize permissions so marketers can both publish posts and have access to other areas of your site — like your online store.

With PublishPress, you can set special permissions for what users can do in your WooCommerce store. This lets you dictate who can update product tags and categories and who can add new products, orders, and coupons to your site. If you have marketers wearing many hats, this makes their workflow easier because they won't have to log in and out of separate accounts with different permissions.

What we like about this plugin:

Publish Press makes it possible to customize author and user roles in whatever way works best for your site and lets you hide any features on both Gutenberg and Classic Editors to make the post-editing screen look exactly the way you want it to.

What we don't like about this plugin:

While the vast majority of reviews for this plugin are 5-stars, there are several that mention a lack of responsive support and issues with the plugin not responding when installed. Take these with a grain of salt, but be aware that potential issues exist.

3. Co-Authors Plus

Price: Free

Co-Authors Plus WordPres Multi Author Plugin

One of the most popular multi-author WordPress plugins, Co-Authors Plus provides you with everything needed to manage a multi-contributor blog or website.

With this plugin, you can assign multiple writers to individual posts, and each writer can edit posts that they're associated with. If the writer has Contributor permissions, they can only edit posts that aren't published. All co-authored posts appear on a "co-author's archive page" as well as the author's individual feed.

What we like about this plugin:

The benefit is in the name: This plugin is all about supporting co-authors on your WordPress site. With the ability to assign multiple authors to a single post and let all assigned authors make edits prior to publishing, Co-Authors plus provides a solid platform for collaboration.

What we don't like about this plugin:

Complaints about this plugin include a lack of robust documentation that may make installation more difficult and potential conflicts with other author management plugins such as PublishPress.

4. Varient

Price: $45

WordPress multi-author plugin - Varient

While Varient is more of a WordPress theme than a plugin, it still provides the tools required to set up a multi-author site. It's intended for news outlets and magazines, but really any business that regularly publishes posts can utilize its core features.

Those features include unlimited pages, post categories, and widgets. There's also an option to add polls to your content so you can survey readers.

Looking for people to chime in on your posts? Varient offers a comments feature where readers can post their opinions and participate in community discussions.

What we like about this plugin:

There’s a lot to like about Varient. Beyond the ability to easily create co- and multi-author posts, the plugin also makes it easy to create a site community with comments and polls for your content. All in all, well worth the $45.

What we don't like about this plugin:

There’s not much to complain about here. The only caveat? Depending on the complexity of your site, Varient may have more features than you need, especially if you’re just getting your site off the ground.

5. Forminator

Price: Free, with paid plans available

Forminator wordpress multi author plugin

As the name makes clear, Forminator is all about forms — the plugin is also great for creating polls, quizzes, and calculators and can be used to manage payments. 

It also offers email routing, Google Recaptcha, custom login forms, and — you guessed it — multi-author support.

What we like about this plugin:

The sheer variety of features offered by Forminator makes it a one-stop-shop for everything you need to get your WordPress site up and running.

What we don't like about this plugin:

The sheer number of functions also means that Forminator might be more than you need, especially if your priority is simple and streamlined multi-author control.

6. WP User Frontend

Price: Free, with paid plans available

WP user frontend wordpress plugin

WP User Frontend is just that — a plugin that helps you build and streamline your WordPress site’s frontend. With unlimited post type form creation, membership management, and profile builder functions, admins get complete control over who’s posting what on their site, when, and how many authors each post has.

What we like about this plugin:

This plugin makes it easy to enable front-end posts and uploads from multiple users, in turn streamlining the process of multiple author management.

What we don't like about this plugin: 

File uploading is not part of the free plugin functionality, making it hard to manage multiple authors unless you’re willing to pay for the full version.

7. List All Posts by Author

Price: Free

List All Posts by Author - WordPress multi-author plugin

Sometimes readers might want to look through all of the posts written by one author. Or, they might want to read all of the posts you've published related to a specific topic. With this plugin, your readers will have the power to filter posts by author, category, or title.

This plugin is useful if you have an extensive blog that covers several different topics and subtopics. It makes it easier for readers to find the content they're looking for without having to sort through a bunch of unrelated posts. In a world where consumers are looking for the fastest, most convenient solution to their problems, this plugin can make all the difference between converting a lead and losing a sale.

What we like about this plugin:

This plugin is great for more complex sites that require additional author and post management. And, thanks to the low, low price of free, List All Posts by Author is a cost-effective way to start managing your posts at scale.

What we don't like about this plugin:

While the plugin comes with a tool that helps generate shortcodes for your site, there’s still a bit more heavy lifting here than with other plugins, meaning it may take some time to get the hang of the functionality.

8. User Role Editor

Price: Free, with paid plans available

User Role Editor - main panel part 1

User Role Editor allows you to customize user permissions outside of what WordPress lets you do by default. While WordPress comes with six, pre-defined user roles — each with its own unique set of permissions — User Role Editor gives you the option to create new roles with personalized capabilities and restrictions.

Why is this useful? Say you want your contributors to upload their own graphics to their blog posts. With the default “Contributor” role, this isn’t possible because contributors can’t upload files to WordPress — they need to be an “Author” to do this. While you could change user roles from Contributor to Author, that ungates users to new capabilities like the option to edit and delete published posts.

With User Role Editor, you don’t have to make that hard choice. You can simply create a new role that finds the middle ground between Contributor and Author.

What we like about this plugin:

User Role Editor lets you fully customize contributor profiles outside the normal confines of WordPress — a significant advantage if you find Author roles too permissive and Contributor roles too restrictive.

What we don't like about this plugin: 

With under 4,000 active subscribers, User Role Editor falls significantly short of other plugins’ populations, and most of the features you’ll need are behind the for-pay Pro version. While $29 per year isn’t a bad price, the usefulness of this plugin really depends on your current use case and the complexity of your site. 

9. Simple Author Box

Price: Free, with paid plans available

Simple Author Box - WordPress multi-author plugin

Simple Author Box places a responsive author box at the end of your content. With the free version, you can add the author's name, a link to their website, and links to their social media accounts.

With the paid version, you have the option to add guest writers and co-authors. You can also customize the style and location of the author box. You can change its color palette, the font size, and where the author box is located on your page.

What we like about this plugin:

The visual nature of Simple Author Box is a great addition to your posts, letting readers better connect with authors thanks to a picture and short bio. Along with integrating the author’s social icons, this is a great way to foster community and help build a blog following.

What we don't like about this plugin:

If you want to access co-author features, you’ll need the for-pay version of this plugin, making it a bit thin on functionality for the free option.

10. User Submitted Posts

Price: Free, with paid plans available

User Submitted Posts WordPress multi-author plugin

Guest contributing is a great way to grow a blog or website organically. It presents opportunities for backlinking which improves your site's ranking on search engines.

But, one roadblock that many businesses will run into is keeping track of guest submissions. Typically pitches will be submitted via email, where it's easy for things to get lost in the shuffle if you don't have an email alias dedicated to guest submissions.

With this plugin, your site visitors can submit new ideas for blog posts via a form on the front end of your site. All you have to do is customize and install a shortcode on your desired page, and you can start collecting data like author name, email, post content, and more.

Not only does this make it easier to keep track of new submissions, but it also establishes a formal process for pitching new ideas to your site.

What we like about this plugin:

If you’re looking to increase your site’s reach and impact with guest posts, User Submitted Posts is a great choice — you can customize every aspect of the submission, approval, and posting process to ensure you’re getting the quality and quantity of guest posts you prefer.

What we don't like about this plugin:

Reviews of the plugin indicate occasional performance and resource issues that may negatively impact site operations.

11. Editorial Calendar

Price: Free

editorial wcalendar wordpress multi-author plugin

If you're posting to your site on a daily basis, it's really helpful to have an editorial calendar that keeps track of all your scheduled and upcoming posts. Since there's no default feature for this in WordPress, this plugin provides you with an overview of your blog and tells you when certain posts will go live.

This plugin offers drag-and-drop functionality, so you can quickly add and remove blog posts to and from your editorial calendar. If you're working with multiple authors, this makes it easy to keep track of who is writing what and when their scheduled deadlines are.

What we like about this plugin:

The reviews make it clear: This is a superior calendar plugin that many users wish was a core function of their WordPress site. Simple drag-and-drop functions combined with a clear visualization of your upcoming post deadlines make this plugin a great choice for multi-author management.

What we don't like about this plugin:

There’s really nothing to dislike here. The only caveat might be if you have a small number of posts to manage and don’t need a calendar, in which case another plugin might better serve your needs.

12. Post Pay Counter

Price: Free, with paid plans available

Post Pay Counter WordPress Plugin

Post Pay Counter is a little different than some of the other plugins featured on this list. This plugin helps you calculate how much to pay an author based on the posts they've written for your site.

You can choose to pay authors by the number of posts they've written or by the number of words included in each post. You can also compensate them based on how many views each post has received, so writers are always encouraged to write engaging and high-performing posts.

Even if you aren't paying your guest contributors, this plugin provides you with a lot of useful information about your site. You can see which authors have been the most successful with your target audience, and which ones are struggling to generate engagement. Armed with this knowledge, you can fine-tune your blog strategy and invest more into topics and writers who create more traffic for your website.

What we like about this plugin:

Payment management for contributors and authors can be challenging, especially if you’re still using manual processes to keep track of it all. Post Pay Counter makes it easy to set payment frameworks, track progress and ensure authors are getting paid for their work.

What we don't like about this plugin:

If you’re not running a pay-for-posts site, there are better plugins to simply manage multi-authors — you can always add this plugin if you decide to make the move to a revenue-sharing model.

Now that you're familiar with a few multi-author management plugins, let's put one into action and show you how to add co-authors to WordPress posts.

How to Have Multiple Authors in WordPress

For this example, we used the first plugin featured on our list: Molongui Author Box.

Once installed, navigate to an existing post or new one. On the right, you should see an option in the sidebar that reads Authors.

Select that card and you should see an interface similar to the one below.

Wordpress multi author plugin example

Image Source

From here, simply add the authors that you wish to add to this post. Once they're all there, hit Add to attribute them to the post.

In the live view, you should see an author box appear that looks somewhat similar to this:

Author Box - Wordpress multi-author plugin

Image Source

Managing Multiple Authors With Your WordPress Website

The more writers you have contributing to your blog, the more content you'll be able to push out. But, the more content you push out, the more difficult it becomes to manage your site.

That's why it's useful to install a multi-author management plugin for your WordPress site. Choose one, or a few of the options listed above to ensure all of your authors can write and edit posts and are properly compensated for their work.

Editor's note: This post was originally published in Jan 2020 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

Use HubSpot tools on your WordPress website and connect the two platforms  without dealing with code. Click here to learn more.

 Use HubSpot tools on your WordPress website and connect the two platforms  without dealing with code. Click here to learn more.

Originally published Mar 14, 2022 7:00:00 AM, updated March 14 2022

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WordPress Plugins