How to Make a WordPress Blog Completely Private

Although it’s easy to make individual posts private or password protected in WordPress, what if you wanted your whole blog to be private?

We’re not talking about partially private here. We’re talking about a blog that’s completely off the grid except for those who have access.

We covered this topic a while ago, and at that time it took a combination of several plugins to make a site completely private.

Since that time, however, some plugins have upped their game, and really you only need one.

featured-private-blog


Private Only Plugin

The Private Only Plugin has been updated and should do the trick nicely – sending non-registered users to a login page. However, you can also include a link on the login page to a public page of your liking.

This plugin also protects your RSS feed – a weakness in past “private blog” plugins.  When you download this plugin, it will actually install two plugins. The second one, called “Private Only, Disable Feed,” takes care of the RSS feed.

When a user attempts to access your feed, they will come up empty-handed.

rss

The plugin also lets you control the following on the login page:

  • include your own logo
  • use the WordPress logo
  • use no logo
  • remove the “Lost Password” text
  • remove the “Back to Blog” link

There is also an option to use custom CSS.

Blocking Search Engines

It would appear that this plugin also blocks search engines automatically; however, there is no info that I could find that directly spells that out.

Therefore, it might also be a good idea to go ahead and block search engines in your admin area.

Go to Settings > Reading > check “Discourage search engines from indexing this site”

search-engine-block


Works on Multisite

This plugin also works on Multisite sites.

Of course if you install it on a Multisite install, you will probably not want to network activate it.

Most likely, unless you plan to make all the sites private, you’ll want to simply install the plugin, and then go to dashboard of the site you want to make private and activate the plugins there.

Photo: Private Sign from BigStock