Here at Talk About Local we find many people we’re helping to develop community websites using WordPress ask about inviting new contributors to their site to lighten their load, get more local people involved and give their website a variety of voice. Here’s a guide to help you add those new to Worpress to your website as contributors and overcome an issue we have encountered numerous times over recent months that has made this process a little less straightforward than it should be.
First of all, check whether your new website contributor has an existing WordPress account or not. If they do, follow these simple steps on adding an existing WordPress.com user. If they do not, you need to invite them to create a WordPress.com account and add them as a contributor to your blog following these simple steps (instructional video above).
Your new user will be sent an email them inviting them to WordPress and should go through the following steps to create a new WordPress username and login to your website (they can of course register their own blog at a later point if they wish).
Creating a WordPress Username
You will receive an email from WordPress which tells you to accept the invitation by clicking on the link URL within. If clicking on the link URL does not work, copy the URL and paste it into the navigation bar of your internet browser.
You will be taken to a WordPress signup page that invites you to ‘Get your own WordPress.com account in seconds’. The first section of the form gives you the option to create a new WordPress.com blog of your own. To avoid confusion, just create a WordPress.com username to log into the website for now, by selecting the option to ‘Sign up for just a Username’ under the second Username box in the form. You can register your own blog later if you wish.
Once you have opted to sign up for just a Username, the Blog Address box will disappear. Complete the rest of the form by creating a unique WordPress username (WordPress will alert you if your fist choice is already taken), a password and enter the email address the initial WordPress invitation was sent to.
Upon pressing the orange ‘Sign up’ button, WordPress will inform you that an email has been sent to your inbox. Check your inbox for the email, checking your spam folder if you cannot find it.
An email should arrive quickly in your inbox, but sometimes it takes a few hours. If it does not arrive go back to the WordPress page prompting you to check your email to complete registration. At the bottom of the page there are a number of options for what to do if you have not received your activation email, including updating your email address if you had entered it incorrectly.
When you receive and open the new email, it tells you to click on the link URL within to activate your new WordPress account. If clicking on the link URL does not work, copy the URL and paste it into the navigation bar of your internet browser.
You will be taken to the WordPress Login page. Sign in with your new WordPress username and password.
You will be taken to your WordPress Personal Profile page. In the left hand menu, select Dashboard and My Blogs to display the website you’ve been added to on the right-hand side of the screen. Click on the title of the website on the right-hand side of the screen to be taken to its Dashboard, where you can get started with creating your first post!
Current issues with adding Contributors new to WordPress
If all goes according to plan, your new contributor should be able to follow these simple steps to create a new WordPress username and log into your website. You can then decide if you want them to remain as a contributor or change their user role to author, editor or administrator.
However, over recent months we have found that WordPress does not always add the new user to the blog they have been invited to. This means that when your new contributor logs into WordPress with their username and password, they will see no websites listed when they select Dashboard and My Blogs. Looking at the WordPress support forum, we’re not the only ones to have encountered this problem. The issue presents a slight glitch but is very easy to get around.
First and foremost, ensure that the person you’ve invited has gone through the sign-up process and created a WordPress username. If so, they will have received a confirmation email from WordPress telling them that their account is now active.
You may also see their new username in your dashboard under Users > Invites under the Already Invited list at the bottom of the screen.
Once you are certain your new contributor has a created a WordPress username, simply go to Users in the left-hand menu and follow the simple steps to Add User From Community, being sure to use the same email address that they created their WordPress username with.
Once you have done this, your new contributor should be able to see your website when they enter the My Blogs section of their dashboard and get cracking with writing the first of many posts!