How to Add an Author Box to Your WordPress Posts

One of the many useful features WordPress delivers as a Content Management System (CMS) is the option to manage multiple authors. This can be especially useful if you want to keep up a high-volume publishing schedule. However, not all themes are well-designed to display individual author bios on posts.  

Fortunately, there are several tools available for including author boxes on your site. In fact, they enable you to build this key information right into your website’s or blog’s structure. That way, your various writers get credit, and your readers can seek out more content from their favorite authors.

In this article, we’ll review three ways to include author boxes on your WordPress website. We’ll also look at several plugins that can make this task easier. Let’s get started!  

What Is a WordPress Author Box?

First, let’s take a look at what a WordPress author box actually is. When you read articles on your favorite blogs, you might notice that at the bottom there’s often a section that’s typically styled to stand out from the rest of the post’s content: 

This is an example of a WordPress author box over on the Torque blog. Most author boxes are similar, providing basic information about the writer and typically an image or headshot. Additionally, there are often links leading out to the author’s email address and/or social media accounts. 

How Can a WordPress Author Bio Enhance Your Site? 

With so many content options available online, setting your blog apart from the masses is important. This is where using a WordPress author box can be very helpful. 

When you add your writers’ professional information to their posts, it can help lend credibility to the content. Additionally, if you often invite guest bloggers to provide content, placing their author bios on the page is a great way to provide transparency to your readers.  

As we saw above, WordPress author boxes usually enable you to include each author’s photo as well. This helps give the post (and your website) a ‘face’. If visitors can connect a real person to what they’re reading, it will humanize your content and encourage them to seek out more.

How to Show Author Names in Your WordPress Posts (3 Methods)

As with most WordPress-related tasks, you have several options when it comes to including an author box on your posts. Depending on your unique situation, one of the following three methods should get the job done. We suggest reading through all of them, and then picking the one that best meets your needs.

1. Choose a WordPress Theme with Author Boxes 

One of the easiest ways to include author boxes on your website is to choose a theme that offers the option as a built-in feature. This is especially important if you have more than one author, as most themes only enable you to display boxes for a single writer. 

Once you choose a theme with this feature, you’ll want to have each author access their User Profile in the WordPress dashboard. They can find this under Users > All Users, by clicking on their usernames:

The information each writer provides in their profile will be used in the corresponding author box. That includes the author’s display name, biographical information, an image if relevant, and their email address. 

2. Use an Author Box WordPress Plugin

If you’re already using a theme that does not feature author boxes, that’s okay! Thanks to the robust offerings in the WordPress Plugin Directory, there are several tools to choose from that can add this feature to just about any theme. 

To help you choose the WordPress author box plugin that will best suit your needs, we’ve reviewed four well-rated options you can try. You’ll find those reviews later in this article. 

3. Use Manual Code to Add Author Bios to WordPress 

If you’re comfortable editing your website’s files directly, you can also add author boxes using code snippets. This is a useful option if you want a completely customized look and feel.

To get started, you can add the following code to your Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) file: 

#author-info { float: left; padding: 20px;background-color: #f0f0f0; margin-bottom:10px; -moz-border-radius: 5px;border-radius: 5px;} 
#author-info .avatar { position: relative; top: 0; left: 0; float: left; } 
#author-description { margin-left: 100px; } 
#author-description h3 { margin-top:0px;margin-bottom:10px;}

Of course, you can tweak this code to suit your website’s specific theme.

Then, you’ll need to locate the single.php file for your theme. If you’re not working with a child theme yet, we do recommend taking that approach. It can help to prevent site breakage if something goes wrong with your code placement. 

Next, add the following code inside The Loop of your single.php file:

<div id="author-info">
<div id="author-avatar">
<?php echo get_avatar( get_the_author_meta('user_email'), '80', '' ); ?>
</div>
<div id="author-description">
<h3><?php the_author_link(); ?></h3>
<?php the_author_meta('description'); ?>
    </div>
</div>

With that code in place, you can now edit the snippet to customize your WordPress author box. You’re free to add in additional information and links as needed – as usual with WordPress, the sky’s the limit when it comes to customization.

What Are the Best WordPress Author Box Plugins?

If you want to use a plugin to add a WordPress author box to your site, you’re in luck. There are several to choose from, which all have some unique features to offer. Here are four of the best options. 

1. Simple Author Box

Simple Author Box plugin banner

The Simple Author Box plugin is a helpful tool if you want to help your authors promote their social media profiles. When you install and activate this plugin, it will add over 30 possible social media options to the User Profile page in WordPress. 

Authors can then choose which accounts they’ll link to in their displayed author boxes. Additionally, each author box can include the writer’s name, their Gravatar, and a description. Simple Author Box is also fully responsive, so you can be confident that your author boxes will display properly on any size screen. 

This is a free plugin with a decent set of default features. However, if you want to gain access to a long list of advanced options, you can upgrade and purchase a single site license for $29 per year

2. Starbox

Starbox WordPress plugin banner

Starbox is a bit of a star itself in the plugin world. It has over 10,000 active downloads, and more than 130 five-star ratings. It also offers a lot of flexibility in how you customize and display your author boxes.

For example, you can choose to include your author boxes at the top or bottom of relevant pages. Additionally, you’ll be able to add in all the information you need to display, along with social links and images. You can also easily add a Starbox to your site by using shortcodes, and create pages that display posts written by specific authors. 

This is a very robust author box plugin that you can download for free. There’s also a pro version that you can upgrade to, if you want to receive the developer’s premium support service. The latter is priced at $29.99. 

3. Molongui Authorship

Molongui Authorship plugin banner

While other plugins often limit author information to users who are registered through your WordPress administration panel, Molongui Authorship offers more options. With this plugin, you’ll be able to include author details from outside WordPress itself. 

In fact, not only can you feature guest authors without adding them to your user list, but you can also accommodate multiple writers in one box. This is a highly-desirable feature if you’re looking to attract panels or teams of talented writers, who prefer to see all of their names featured.

This is another free plugin with a premium upgrade option. A one-site license is about $30. The free version is pretty robust, but if you want to extend the author box feature to your custom post types or sidebars the premium version is your best bet.  

4. Author Bio Box

Author Bio Box WordPress plugin banner

Author Bio Box is a great choice if you’re looking for a very simple and straightforward solution. It’s well-rated by WordPress users, and the source code is hosted and maintained on GitHub.

This is a free, no-frills option that adds an author box settings menu to your dashboard. You’ll be able to select colors and choose from several other style options. Additionally, you can include a number of social account icons for linking out to key author information. 

Build Trust and Authority with WP Engine 

There’s a lot of noise out there, and keeping your audience focused on your content can be difficult. Displaying a WordPress author box is an easy way to offer your readers transparent and valuable details about your writers’ expertise. 

Here at WP Engine, we know how important it is to have access to the best developer resources. When it comes to building fast, secure, and reliable websites, we have several hosting plans to choose from. Check out our WordPress solutions for your next project! 

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