A very good way to engage with your site’s audience is to make them a part of it. Allowing your users to submit their own work will not only give you unique and fresh content, which in turn will attract more readers, but will also create an active user base. People that come in to offer their views, ideas and material. Today we will take a look at plugins that allow you to accept front end submissions.
User Submitted Posts
Our first front end publishing plugin for today is User Submitted Posts. Install, activate the plugin and navigate to Settings > User Submitted Posts to configure it. The plugin offers many options to allow you to best handle the user submitted posts. Posts are submitted via a form, you have the ability to select which fields will appear on the form and if they will be required ones. Additionally you can select between the plugin’s default styling or your own. Posts can be published immediately or left as pending for you to review them and then get them live. After you take care of the configuration you can get the plugin’s shortcode and paste it in a page. You will get a form similar to the following.
Now all you have to do is point your visitors/potential authors to the form page and have them add content. Depending on your settings the content will either go live or wait for your manual approval.
Frontend Publishing is our next plugin on the list. Upon activation you will get a new tab on the dashboard titled Frontend Publishing. Here you will find the plugin’s settings. You can set post requirements, for example minimum title size, minimum content size etc. User role settings are also available, you can allow a certain user role to publish posts immediately and skip the default behavior of having the post wait for your manual review. Just like the previous plugin, after you are finished with the setup you can paste the form shortcode in a page and point your users there. They’ll be greeted with a submission form that looks like this one.
This form is a bit more flexible than the previous one. It also sports a familiar layout on the text editor which will make your potential author’s work easier.
Next up is Frontier Post. Activating the plugin will create all necessary pages with the plugin’s shortcodes. You’ll get a posts page, a pending posts page and a drafts one. All you have to do is navigate to the My Posts page and click the Create New Post button.
You will be presented with a form where you can fill in all post elements, title, content, categories, tags and excerpt. The plugin gives you a preview option as well, so you can see how the post looks before publishing.
While the plugin can be activated and used immediately, it offers a lot of options to fine tune its functionality. All options can be found under the Frontier tab in your dashboard. You have the ability to control user roles & capabilities regarding plugin usage, you can select which posts can be edited and/or deleted and for how long, and more.
Our last plugin for today is Frontend Uploader. By default this plugin allows visitors to submit files to the site, whether these are images, audio files or documents. In line with the rest ones, a simple modification to the plugin’s shortcode allows users to submit posts as well. The plugin’s basic settings can be found under Settings > Frontend Uploader Settings. Here you can integrate spam protection on the plugin’s forms in the form of Akismet or ReCaptcha. Additionally you can select on which of the available post types the plugin will work. Finally, you can allow extra file types to be uploaded by your users, like Word or Excel documents for example. After you finish with the configuration you can paste the plugin’s shortcode in a post or page. You’ll get a form like the one below.
Your users can fill in the required post info and submit. The post will be marked as private and await your manual approval. The plugin’s shortcode is highly customizable. Shortcode examples can be found in the plugin’s description and FAQ pages.
That was our front end submission plugin list. We hope you enjoyed reading and hopefully you’ve found a valuable tool among them. Have a suggestion? Is there a certain plugin type you’d like to see here? Let us know in the comments below!
So, which would be best for user photo posts?
If you are more geared towards media upload I would start by checking out Frontend Uploader.
another plugin I do quite like when it comes to frontend publishing is https://wordpress.org/plugins/frontkit/
Thank you for the suggestion David! I’ll check it out :)
Thanks a lot for this useful list, I tested the Frontend Publishing plugin and it just does what I need. It’s a great plugin.