WordPress User Roles

Sometimes you want to add another User to your site. This can be done easily enough, but make sure that you set the role of that new User clearly.

What will this new User do?

Will the new User be an Administrator?

  • activating/deactivating/editing plugins,
  • switching themes,  updating/installing/deleting themes,
  • editing other peoples’ posts by editing/deleting published posts,
  • changing fonts, changing font colours
  • managing/adding/deleting/editing categories,
  • editing core files,
  • editing other Users
  • someone who has access to all of the administration features in your site

You’re the Administrator, do you really need another one?

If you don’t need someone else playing around inside your WordPress but you want someone else to contribute articles (write posts) then create a new User.

Set that User as Author or Contributor.

WordPress User Roles and Capabilities

  • Administrator – somebody who has access to all the administration features within the site.
  • Editor – somebody who can publish and manage posts including the posts of other users.
  • Author – somebody who can publish and manage their own posts.
  • Contributor – somebody who can write and manage their own posts but cannot publish them.
  • Subscriber – somebody who can only manage their profile. This role is largely defunct and unnecessary nowadays. I wouldn’t allow anyone to be a subscriber, they can sign up instead for a feed or for a newsletter subscription. I only wish WordPress would junk this role

So if you’re adding a new User so that they can write posts, then set their role as Author. If you want to check their posts before they’re published, set their role as Contributor.

N.B. The new User you wish to add may be your best, most trustworthy friend but another administrator is one more chance for a hacker to break in. If passwords are left around, or broken by a ‘password-buster’ programme (yes, you can purchase these programmes) then very little damage can result when the new User is not an administrator.

How to Add a New User

In your dashboard, navigate down to Users >> Add New

Create a name for your new User. Don’t use their real name, create something quite different. You then create a nickname for them using their real name (or any name that you wish). To keep your site secure, make sure that the Username is difficult for someone else to guess.


Create a strong password for your new User and tick the box ‘Send Password’

Example of a New User