Posted on January 11, 2017 by John Hughes in Tips & Tricks |
By default, most WordPress themes display a set of meta data on published blog posts. This typically includes at least the author and the date the post was published. Such information can certainly be useful and informative for the reader, but there are certain instances where you might want to remove author and date information. (For example, older ‘evergreen’ posts can benefit from having the published date removed, so as not to imply the content is dated.)
With the above in mind, this post will show you how to remove author and date information in no less than three ways: within the Divi Blog module, using a plugin, or manually within your theme files.
Even though there are many potential instances where you’d like to remove the author and date information, not every theme gives you the option to do so. Fortunately, if you’re a Divi user, we’ve made it super simple to remove this information from your content.
In the Divi Builder, click on Insert Column(s), and in the resulting popup, select the single column (or more depending on your desired layout):
Next, click on Insert Module(s), and in the popup select Blog:
You will be directed to the General Settings tab of your Blog module. Here you’ll see lots of options to help you tailor your module’s appearance and content, including the layout, number of posts, and which categories you want to display.
If you scroll about halfway down this tab, you’ll see there is a Show Author button followed by a Show Date button:
Simply move one or both of these to the No position, and that’s it! The information won’t be displayed on the posts that appear within this module.
If your theme doesn’t have Divi’s functionality, you can use a plugin instead. The following two free plugins offer slightly different functionality, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs.
WP Meta and Date Remover enables you to remove the author and date information from all of your posts in one go. Once the plugin is activated, all of the meta information is automatically removed. It uses two methods to remove the data: hiding it from the front end via CSS, and removing it from the back end via PHP. The latter method means that the meta data is also no longer visible to search engines, and you have the option to use just one method or both.
As its name suggests, this plugin is specifically designed to remove date information only. It’s particularly useful if you have lots of evergreen content or a site that you don’t update regularly. If you’d like to keep the date on newer posts, you can select the number of days you want the date to be displayed for.
This plugin doesn’t have the option to hide the date from search engines, so it will still be displayed there. It also has a couple more pitfalls, such as incompatibility with some themes. However, the author does offer support for this and other issues.
Both of the above plugins are very intuitive when it comes to setup, but let’s take a quick look at how to adjust your settings for the WP Meta and Date Remover plugin.
Once you have your plugin installed and activated, select the Settings tab in your dashboard and choose WP Meta and Date Remover. The resulting screen will look something like this:
Once you’re in here you have a couple of options. The first check box is for PHP removal, which removes the meta information from the source code so that even search engines can’t read it. The second one is for CSS removal, which prevents the meta information from being displayed on the front end. By default, the plugin will remove data by both methods unless you check one of the boxes.
Once you have made your changes, don’t forget to hit the Save Changes button at the bottom.
If you’re comfortable adding or editing code, you can remove author and date information manually. In this section we’ll take a look at three ways to do this.
Before we dive in, it’s important to note that prior to making these changes, you should back up your theme’s files just in case. We recommend using a plugin such as UpdraftPlus.
If you have Jetpack installed, you will have access to a Custom CSS tab where you can add the appropriate code. First, you’ll need to activate the tab in the Jetpack Settings screen. In your dashboard select Jetpack, then choose Settings. In the resulting screen, choose the Appearance tab and scroll down to the Custom CSS button. Make sure it is in the activated (blue) position and you’re all set to continue:
Now in your main dashboard, select Appearance, and choose Edit CSS. You’ll be taken to a screen that looks like this:
Here you can insert the following code:
Finally, hit Save Stylesheet and you’re done. The author and date should no longer be visible on any posts.
Some themes have a Custom CSS tab within the customizer, the location being theme dependent. If you have access to a tab like this you can simply add the same code that we used above:
If you’re unsure whether your theme has this option or where to find it, your best bet is to ask the theme author or consult your documentation.
One more option is to delete the lines entirely from your theme files. When making edits directly to your theme files, we recommend using a child theme and backing up your site prior to making changes. It is also a good idea to ask your theme author which files contain the author and date information and whether it is okay to delete it.
Once you know which files you need to edit, you can use an FTP client to delete the relevant lines of code. If you don’t already have one, we recommend FileZilla, which is free and easy to use.
Once you’re logged into FileZilla, locate the file(s) that you need to edit in the Remote site section and drag them to your Desktop in the Local site section.
Create and rename a copy of each file to keep as a backup, then open and edit the original files using a code editor such as Atom. Once you have deleted the relevant lines of code, you can drag the edited files back into the FTP client interface to their original folders. You will be asked to confirm that you want to replace the files. Select Overwrite and click OK. Now you can go to your website to check that the changes have been made successfully.
Although author and date meta tags have their benefits, they’re not appropriate for every website. Whether you have evergreen content, a single author site, or another reason for meta removal, it can be helpful to know how to hide or remove author and date information. Thankfully, this is a relatively simple task, especially of you’re a Divi user.
In this article we’ve outlined three methods to help you tailor your meta information to suit your needs. Let’s recap them quickly:
Have you ever needed to remove meta information from your website’s posts? Let us know in the comments section below, and don’t forget to subscribe so you can follow the conversation!