How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress?

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On sites like KnowledgeCage where we have a team of over 20 authors writing for us, we come across questions like How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress.

Because every writer has his own writing style, format and research right? Now it’s a possibility that some people want to subscribe only to the works of those writers and not the whole website.

It is mutually beneficial too, the people won’t be spammed with all the articles that a site has, instead they will only get notified about the articles of that specific writer and we would still grab their E-mails, without spamming them for it.

A live example can be seen on HuffingtonPost. You might have seen it has the feature where it lets you subscribe to specific authors. And that’s exactly what we would be doing, so let’s get down to some of the more basic questions regarding How to Allow User Registration on Your WordPress Site.

Why Allow Specific Author Subscription:-

The one feature that makes WordPress so unique and awesome is this, that it generates separated RSS feeds for almost every element.

I’m talking Comments, Images, Posts, Categories and everything else.

Now, it’s not like people can just dig into our RSS feeds and grab what they want, right? We need to give them what they’re looking for, so we just show them how to find those links.

In short, when they subscribe to that author, they’ll automatically subscribe to his RSS feed without needing to get into any technicalities or complexions

How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress:-

So okay I know you’re probably getting bored with all the chit-chat, so let me just get down to the section How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress.

Now there are quite a number of ways to go about this.

Let’s start with the simplest method that solves our problem regarding How to Automate Author Registration with WordPress.

Method #1:- Using Simple HTML

Your authors have an author bio section, right?

Just go to your site’s Dashboard > Users > Your Profile

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And there you can see your author bio section.

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Just ask them to copy-paste the below line in their author bio section:-

<a href="http://www.example.com/author/evan/feed">Subscribe Evan's Posts</a>

Make sure you replace “Evan” with your author’s username. You can also change the “Subscribe to Evan’s posts” text!

What this will do is it will simply give your user’s the link to the author’s feed and they can subscribe to it manually.

Method #2:- Create Your Own Shortcodes:-

This is the best solution for any WordPress problem, isn’t it? Probably this is the reason why WordPress is dominating 25% of the internet. (Damn I say that in almost each of my posts right?)

Doesn’t matter what your problem is, there always is a plugin or a shortcode to help you out of it. Or, if there isn’t one already, you can have your very own plugin in the least of efforts.

So what we will do here is I’ll just show you how to create your own author subscription shortcode.

Just head over to your Cpanel and click on File Manager > Public HTML

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Head over to Wp-Content > Themes

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Then choose your theme from the list find the functions.php file in it.

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And then right-click on it > code it.

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Copy-paste the following code into the file, and save it:-

// Function to generate author's RSS feed link

function wpb_author_feed() {

$authorfeed =  get_author_feed_link( get_the_author_id(), ''); 

$authorfeedlink = '<a href='. $authorfeed . '>Subscribe to get more posts from ' . get_the_author_meta( 'display_name') .''  ;

return $authorfeedlink;

} 
// Create a shortcode to display the link
add_shortcode('authorfeed', 'wpb_author_feed');

// Enable shortcode execution in WordPress text widgets
add_filter('widget_text', 'do_shortcode');

Done!

What you just did is you created a shortcode for your Author Subscription.

Using the Shortcode:-

The shortcode you just created is:- [authorfeed]

I’m pretty sure you know how to use it, just in case you don’t, just copy-paste (or type) the above shortcode wherever you want in your text, and it will create a subscription link for that author automatically.

What the shortcode does is, it doesn’t need every author to manually type in lines of codes or specify their usernames.

Every author on your site can just use the same shortcode [authorfeed] to create their subscription links, the magic is that the same shortcode would create different subscription links based on the different authors.

Here is an example:-

Keep in mind that, you don’t have to write anything while using the shortcode. The sentence “This article was written by ____” is an automatic insertion, just inserting the shortcode does the trick.

Final Words:-

So that was all I had on How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress. I’m sure that solved your queries? I agree the methods aren’t exactly user-friendly. But if you look at the code just as something you’ve got to copy-paste and not edit or mess your head with, I’d say it’s pretty straight forward.

But I tried my best to explain them as easily as possible, was I successful? I’d love to hear your opinion about it.

Considering it was a complex article, I would also seriously like your feedback on your understanding of the process, and you can totally reach out to me using the comment box below if there’s someplace you’re stuck and would like my help!

I wouldn’t mind you hitting the share button either, nor would I mind if you’ve got simpler options that solve the problem and would like to share with me.

evanderek

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