User Roles

WordPress uses a concept of User Roles, designed to give the site owner the ability to control what users can and cannot do within the site. A site owner can manage the user access to such tasks as writing and editing posts, creating Pages, defining links, creating categories, moderating comments, managing plugins, managing themes, and managing other users, by assigning a specific role to each of the users.

WordPress comes with six roles with varying capabilities:

  • Super Admin – gives access to the site network administration and all features
  • Administrator – gives access to the administration features within a single site
  • Editor – gives the ability to publish and manage posts, including posts of other users
  • Author – gives the ability to publish and manage their own posts
  • Contributor – gives the ability to write and manage posts but cannot publish
  • Subscriber – gives the ability to manage their own profile

Creating a New User

Creating a new user role in WordPress.

To add a new user, navigate to Users in the left hand sidebar of the dashboard.  When you click on Users in the menu, a carrot will appear on the right of the menu bar and the Users option will drop down revealing three options:  All Users, Add New and Your Profile.

As with creating pages, posts or adding another image to your Medial Library, simply click on the Add New link under Users to create a new user.


Image showing the form fields for adding a new user.

After you click on that Add New link, you’ll be brought to a page called Add New User.  Here you will have the opportunity to input:

  • Username, which is required
  • Email address, also required
  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Website
  • Password – WordPress will generate one for you – just click on the Show Password to see and copy the password.  Remember to save this somewhere safe!
  • Role – here is where you choose the new user’s role.  The system automatically defaults to the subscriber role.  If you want to grant someone  more privileges than that, click on the caret and select a different role for your new user.

You also get the option to send the new user an email notification about their new role in your WordPress website.

Once you’ve completed all the form fields, click on the Add New User button to complete the process and make the new user an official part of your website.  Added bonus:  as an administrator, you’ll also get an email from WordPress letting you know a New User has been registered.  A great way to keep track if you have multiple administrators.

Changing a User Role

If sometime in the future you’d like to change a user’s role, here is what you can do (assuming you have the administrative privileges of an admin user):

  • Navigate to Users >> All Users
  • Hover over the User you want to change.  Below their username an Edit link will pop up
  • This will bring you to the Edit User ___________ page
  • In the name section, immediately below the username is the Role option with a drop down list.  Change the role and scroll to the bottom of the page to Update User.


Adding a PDF to Your Page or Post

While it may seem like a lot of steps, adding a PDF to Your Page or Post can be pretty painless.  The process is similar to adding a photo and will get easier after each time you successfully upload a PDF.  Here are the steps:

Adding a PDF to Your Page or Post

  1. Navigate to an existing Post or Page or create a new Page or Post.
  2. Adding a PDF to Your Page or Post - Insert Media screen image.Click into your Page or Post where you want your PDF link to go.
  3. Click on the Add Media button above the toolbar.
  4. In the Insert Media screen choose Upload Files.
  5. Navigate to the PDF you want uploaded to your site and click Open on the bottom right of your screen.
  6. Once the PDF has been uploaded, click on the blue Insert into post button on the lower right of your screen.
  7. The link to your PDF will be inserted into the Page or Post.
  8. Remeber to Save Draft or Publish your changes.

To Upload a PDF to Use at a Later Time

  1. From the Dashboard menu, click Media >> Add New or click Media to go to the Media Library and then click on the Add New button.
  2. Click the Select Files button to access the files on your computer.
  3. Select the file you want to upload.
  4. Click the Open button.
  5. When the upload is complete, you will see the new file in your Media Library.

Note: If the file does not open, then the file type is not supported.  There are file types WordPress won’t upload.

Adding Links to Widgets

How Do I Make A Link Inside The Text Widget?

We’re faced with the same issue as the last question, there are no text editing tools inside the Widget area.  We’ll have to use HTML code to create a link for the visitor to click.  Before creating the link, make sure you have the URL of where you want to link to.

The HTML code we are going to use is <a href=””>Text You Want Linked</a>

To break this down, the anchor tag


tells the browser hey, this is the beginning of a link.  The


tells the browser where the link will take a visitor.  Remember to tell the browser to shift gears by adding a closing bracket > after the link and quotes.

The text between the anchor tags, Text You Want Linked, will be the link your visitor sees.   And finally, you need to tell the browser to end the link with a closing anchor tag.


While this may look complicated, as an example, we could create a link to Google.

Look up movie quotes on <a href=””>Google</a>.

Will give you:

Look up movie quotes on Google.


FAQs About Widgets

Can I Use The Same Widget More Than Once?

Widget area with two Text Widgets.Yes, you can use the same widget multiple times in the same area or in different Widget areas. There are no restrictions.

For example, you may want to have two separate text areas in the same sidebar. Simply drag and drop the Text Widget over to the sidebar twice. Give each Text Widget  it’s own Title and Content.  Save your page or post and check your site.

The Text Widget also allows you to add HTML code into the Content Area.

Can I Bold Text In The Text Widget?

While pages and posts offer you text editing tools, widgets do not.  You’ll need to add some HTML tags to wrap around the text you want to be bold.  If you have the text:

“Here’s looking at you, kid” (Casablanca, 1942)

and you want ‘looking at you’ to be in bold text, you’ll just need to wrap that phrase around the HTML strong tag:

“Here’s <strong>looking at you</strong>, kid” (Casablanca, 1942) will give you this result:

“Here’s looking at you, kid” (Casablanca, 1942)

Notice that strong is surrounded by brackets and the second use of the word strong is closed with a diagonal.  This tells the browser to stop the bold text.

Can I Italicize Text In The Text Widget?

You’ll need to add some HTML tags to wrap around the text you want to be italic.  If you have the text:

“Here’s looking at you, kid” (Casablanca, 1942)

and you want ‘Casablanca’ to be in italicized text, you’ll need to wrap that phrase around the HTML emphasis tag:

“Here’s looking at you, kid” (<em>Casablanca</em>, 1942) will give you this result:

“Here’s looking at you, kid” (Casablanca, 1942)

Notice that em is surrounded by brackets and the second use of the tag em is closed with a diagonal.  This tells the browser to stop the italicized text.

More On Widgets

Drag & Drop a Widget

Sidebar widget showing drag and drop.If you want to reorder your widgets, it is as simple as dragging and dropping from one part of the Widgets page to the other.

If you hover a Widget, either in the Available Widgets column or in one of the Widget Areas (sidebar, footer or header), your cursor will change to a four sided directional arrow.

You can then click and hold to drag and drop. Using this feature, you can reorder the widgets within a sidebar, header or footer Widget area.

You can also click and hold to drag a Widget from the list of Available Widgets to the Widget Area where you want the Widget to appear.

Removing a Widget

Removing a widget from a Widget Area can be done two ways.

  1. You can drag and drop the Widget into the Available Widgets area.
  2. You can open the Widget and click the red Remove link on the bottom left of the Widget.

Check Your Work

After moving widgets where you want them, be sure to take a look at your site to see how they are looking in the page or post.  If it not quite right, go back and make adjustments as necessary.

Saving Customized Widgets

But what if you have made changes to the Widget and don’t want to lose those changes by putting the Widget back into the Available Widgets or by deleting the Widget from your Widget Area?

Inactive Widgets keeps settings while not using the widget.Below the Available Widgets area on the left is an area for Inactive Widgets. This is where you can store Widgets you have customized (such as the Text Widget) for later use.  When you’re ready to start using the Inactive Widget, just drag and drop it into the Widget Area where you would like it to appear.  This change is automatically saved for you.