How to Make WordPress Site Private With or Without a Plugin

How to Make WordPress Site Private With or Without a Plugin

Do you want to know how to make the WordPress site private while there is no option? The majority of websites are created to attract new visitors and consumers. While many website owners want to keep their internet doors as open as possible, some choose to create private WordPress sites.

It’s all about increasing traffic, exposure, and engagement when you’re online and sharing content. But what if we want to be online but just in a restricted manner? What do we do online when we don’t want the entire world to read our material, interact with us? Is it possible to limit external access to a WordPress blog or website? Yes!

And it’s something we’ll discuss in required detail with you so you can understand and apply it to your website.  You can now build a WordPress website offline and install WordPress locally without purchasing anything or telling anyone and hide from the internet or people.

How to Make the WordPress Site Private 

Fortunately, hiding your data from search engines and the general public is simple using the WordPress platform. Whether you’re developing a WordPress website and want to make it private temporarily or on a more permanent basis, this is true. These are some of the elements we will be focusing on in this guide. 

  • Why would I need to hide my site?
  • How do I make my entire WordPress website private?
    • Hide website from search engines visibility 
    • How to make the WordPress site private with a plugin
    • Show a coming soon page in WordPress with a plugin
    • How to make the WordPress site private without a plugin (advanced)
  • Remove website from Google search
  • How to Make Your WordPress Blog Private
    • Block users without an account from posts or pages
    • Password secure pages or posts
  • What are the implications of a private WordPress website?
  • Which approach will you use?

You can also check how to install a WordPress SSL certificate for free and protect your data from attackers.

Why Would I Want to Hide my Site?

Many expert developers will retain a newly developed website secret until it is ready to go live. It enables the user to populate a new website with information and fix any difficulties without an audience. The developer will only make their site public after adding content and finalizing the theme. Other websites should never be made available to the general public. For example, suppose a website created for family members or used inside a small business. 

 

These kinds of websites include content that is only meant for a small number of people. In situations like these, making a WordPress site private permanently is quite acceptable and often recommended. However, before you continue, determine whether you want to hide a part of your website or all of it. Your requirements will determine the optimum strategy. In this article, we’ll show you how you can hide an entire site or a specific post through different methods.

How do I Make my Entire WordPress Website Private?

 If you don’t want your website to appear in search engines and hide your published content. You can hide the site through WordPress’s built-in function that restricts the search engine not to show this site. You can also limit any public access to your website. To do so, you’ll need to install a plugin such as My Private Site.

There’s a significant difference between a search engine-hidden site and a private site. Visitors that know your website address can continue to browse even if you’ve disabled search indexing. So you have to restrict the user through the My Private Site Plugin.

Hide website from search engines visibility 

WordPress has a built-in option for individuals who wish to keep their websites hidden from search engines like Google and Bing. You may find this option at the bottom of the website settings and click on Readings.

How to Make the WordPress Site Private 

Once the new page appears, scroll it down, and you will see the Discourage Search Engines From Indexing This Site. Then you have to check the Checkbox and Click on Save Changes.

If your website is brand new and you haven’t made an announcement about it, chances are no one knows the URL. And, as long as your work-in-progress doesn’t include any sensitive content, this setting could be sufficient to keep your WordPress site private until it’s ready to publish. Of course, it won’t stop anyone from viewing your website, but it will make it much more challenging to discover the URL.

This option is an excellent method to keep your website off search engines for a while when enabled. However, if you can’t risk people viewing your website before (or after) it’s done, you’ll need to take further actions. The next level of defense is a plugin that prevents any public access.

How to make the WordPress site private with a plugin

Force Login

Many plugins can provide these services, but this plugin will be helpful and with more than 30,000+ active installations. One of the most popular privacy plugins is Force Login. It’s a basic and light plugin that needs users to log in before interacting with the site. You’re done after you’ve installed and activated it. Only those with user rights may view your WordPress site, which is private! Force Login is compatible with WordPress Multisite, configurable, translation-ready, and WPML certified.

Force login in WordPress

If you want to, you can circumvent Force Login, specify whitelist URLs, add exceptions, and more with a bit of code. It’s the most uncomplicated and most user-friendly WordPress private plugin available. If you change your mind about privacy, click the Deactivate button, and it will restore your site.

My Private Site

If hiding your site from search engines isn’t enough, you may use a free plugin like My Private Site to block outside visitors. Anyone who visits your website without an account will be routed to the WordPress login screen using this method.

Your whole WordPress site will be made private with My Private Site. So even if they know the URL, no one will be able to see your website as long as it is operational. This extra level of security makes My Private Site ideal for private firms and organizations that never want their confidential information to be shared with the public.

 You have access to the WordPress admin dashboard for this plugin, hover over the plugins, and click on the Add New button. Once the new screen appears, search for the plugin My Private Site and then install and activate the plugin.

My Private Site plugin in WordPress

 

Return to the dashboard after activating the plugin, and there you will see this plugin in the left sidebar menu. Now hover over the My Private Site and click on Site Privacy. Once it opens a new window, you’ll find Enable Login Privacy’s; check it and click on Save Privacy Status. Now you’ll see your entire site is private, and it will take you to the WordPress login page.

Enable Login Privacy's;

Next, go to the Membership Settings screen in your control panel and ensure the Anyone May Register option is turned off. Anyone may come along, make an account, and read your private WordPress site while it is enabled.

Anyone May Register in WordPress

You can continue to browse and administer your private WordPress site as usual as an administrator. However, you may also establish accounts for your associates and customers to provide them access to your website. Go to your WordPress control panel’s Users section and Add users as many accounts as you need. They’ll be able to visit your site as a subscriber, but they won’t have access to any of the site’s advanced admin features. 

Show a coming soon page in WordPress with a plugin.

To show the coming soon page has multiple benefits that developers or owners can get. For example, unexpected login screens might confuse users who have come to your website searching for information. Instead, utilize a commercial plugin like Divi builder if the user experience is a high priority.

Coming soon page divi builder in WordPress

Divi builder will help the developer show or hide a customized coming soon page according to their needs. Then, when the page is activated, anybody who visits your site will get a polished coming soon page instead of the standard WordPress login screen. So you can reach the visitors through different techniques. For example, you can add the subscriber or membership that will help you in the future on the coming soon page. You can also add the countdown and other text that can grab your customers.

How to make the WordPress site private without a plugin (advanced)

For simple operations, developers tend to avoid plugins. However, these developers can frequently achieve the same results with just a few lines of code. Without using a plugin, there are a few options for making a WordPress site private. The first approach needs a simple change to a theme’s functions.php file and will work in most hosting situations.

For function.php, you have to log in to your WordPress admin dashboard. Then hover over the Appearance and click on the Theme Editor. Next, on the right sidebar, you will see the list of .php files, and you have to select the fuction.php file and paste the code here.

function make_wordpress_site_private(){
  global $wp;
  if (!is_user_logged_in() && $GLOBALS['pagenow'] !== 'wp-login.php'){
    wp_redirect(wp_login_url($wp -> request));
    exit;
  }
}
add_action('wp', 'make_wordpress_site_private');

 

Once you insert the code into the functions.php file, the snippet will have the same impact as any plugin. The user that has access to the website will be able to visit the site without any restrictions, while everyone will be sent to the login page. If you add this code to your site, remove it before getting live or public access.    

Remove Websites from Google Search

 If you want to hide and then visible your new website efficiently, timing is crucial. No one will be able to visit your website if you neglect to remove access restrictions once it goes live. However, if you make a WordPress website private too late, then search engines may locate and index it before you’re ready for it to be seen by the public.

Google allows developers to delete particular URLs from search results. Of course, you’ll need to set up your site with Google Search Console to file a removal request, but everyone who manages a website of any size should be using this free service anyway.

You can remove the WordPress site by using the following steps, and you’ll see how easy that is. First, if you don’t use this google tool already, you have to set up a Search Console. However, we didn’t go deep into how to set up the Google search console.  

Navigate to your Search Console property and then click on the Removals option in the sidebar to remove a WordPress site from Google search results. Then, under the Temporary Removals page, click the New Request option.

Search Console Temporary Removals 

Remove Websites from Google Search in WordPress

Once you click on it, the New Request popup should appear, and then select Temporarily Remove URL and insert the WordPress URL that you want to remove from google search. If you want to remove a specific URL, then select Remove this URL only, or for all site prefixes, select to Remove all URLs with this prefix, and click on the Next button to send your request.

How to Make Your WordPress Blog Private

All removals performed with the tool are only temporary, and they will expire after a few months. You can reject the removal from the same Search Console screen if you require your pages to restore before an expired request expires. You’ll also need to make your WordPress site private using one of the ways discussed above to remove WordPress content from Google Search permanently.

How to Make Your WordPress Blog Private

To restrict access to your entire website, you’ll need to install a plugin or apply custom code, as you’ve learned. However, if you only want to protect specific pages or posts, we’ll show you how to make your WordPress blog private through the simple process.

First, log in to your WordPress admin dashboard, navigate that post you want to restrict, and click the Edit button. Then, you’ll see the Status & Visibility section on the right sidebar, click on the tab labeled Visibility, and select Visibility as Private.

WordPress Blog Private

Block users without an account from posts or pages

It would help if you want to make it private for a specific blog restriction. Public, Private, and password-protected content visibility options are available by default. The default for all new content is the public setting, which is self-explanatory. Choose Private instead of Public if you want to restrict access to people who don’t have an account.

Anyone who visits the website without having an account will receive an error message indicating that the Content Was Not Found. This notification is identical to the one that appears when a page or post does not exist. To view this notification in action, go to the impacted page in a private browser window.

However, unlike previous sitewide privacy settings, these private content settings will prohibit registered users with lower roles. In addition, access to your private WordPress pages and posts will be blocked by anyone who does not have an editor or administrator account.

Password secure pages or posts

A third and last option for block editors is to make a page or post-password-protected, and it is usable for entire WordPress posts or pages. The password-protected option will hide the content if a user cannot enter a correct password after submitting a request.

Select Password Protected from the editor’s Visibility selection to enable this functionality to any content. After you’ve decided, you’ll need to choose a password from the same dropdown menu.

Password secure pages or posts in WordPress

The password you provide has nothing to do with any WordPress user accounts or the login system. Instead, anyone who has the correct password can view your content, regardless of whether or not they have an account.

Visitors will receive a password notification instead of page or post content at first. However, the user who entered the correct password accessed the content, and others did not view protected content.

What are the Implications of a Private WordPress Site?

 When you disable indexing from the Reading settings box to make a WordPress site private, you’re telling search engines, “I don’t want anybody able to find my content.” Your website will still be accessible to the general public if they know the address or follow a link, but it will not be listed in Google or Bing webmaster tools.

Implications of a Private WordPress Site

After you’ve enabled indexing again, search engines will display your content in results, but not right away. Tools like Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools might help you speed up the process.

You effectively block all public access when you restrict access with My Private Site or WordPress visibility settings. 

Which Method will you Use?

You can hide your website from search engines and block public access to pages and posts using native WordPress settings. However, you’ll need to use a plugin or other code to charge for or prohibit access to your entire site.

Evaluate your skillset as well as the demands of your audience before moving further. The best strategy is to secure sensitive content on your website while enabling search engines and the general public to see everything else. However, you can use another method to hide the website from the internet entirely, and people would not see it. Make a website offline and install WordPress locally without purchasing anything or revealing anyone.

WordPress Caching Issues: Here’s How To Fix Them (2022)

WordPress Caching Issues: Here’s How To Fix Them (2022)

If you are running a website with a great number of visitors then you can easily encounter caching issues. In this case, you need to be aware of the process of troubleshooting and fixing WordPress caching issues You don’t need to worry because we will be guiding you through the entire process and helping you get rid of these issues. 

One of the most effective ways of decreasing the loading time of your web pages and quickly bringing content to your visitors is by using caching on your website. This method has its own issues which can make it difficult for you to view the changes made to your website immediately.

Are you wondering what would happen if your cache is full? Well, most of the problems arise from the cache being full. If your cache gets too large then you might face delays in loading and the overall speed will be slowed down. 

This can make you encounter an unexpected error and make it difficult for you to immediately view the changes you made to your website.

Therefore, you need to clear your WordPress cache so that you and your users can see the updates you did right away on your website. This article will guide you in troubleshooting, fixing, and clearing your WordPress cache through WordPress cache plugins, Chrome browser, Cloudflare content delivery network (CDN), and Ezeoic ad network.    

What Are The Common WordPress Caching Issues?

What Are The Common WordPress Caching Issues?

If used correctly, caching increases the speed of your WordPress website and results in faster page load times, and decreases the load on your server. 

However, if you have not configured your caching correctly or did not clear your WordPress cache on time, you may run into WordPress caching issues that may need your immediate attention. 

Steps to Resolve the WordPress Caching issues:

Here are some of the common problems you might face on your WordPress website.

  • Using the Google Chrome web browser and seeing the same content after you make some changes on your website.
  • Installing the WordPress cache plugin on your WP website and not being able to clear your cache properly or running into plugin compatibility issues.
  • Using a CDN and it’s not serving the updated web pages.
  • Installing an incompatible cache plugin with your ad network.
  • Using a cloud-based hosting server platform for your website and experiencing WordPress caching issues.

How To Diagnose WordPress Cache Issues?

How To Diagnose WordPress Cache Issues?

If you are facing caching issues on your WordPress website, you can use the step-by-step methods in this article to diagnose ad troubleshoot your issue. Let’s take a look at these steps.

Local Caching Issue

Local wordpress caching issues

Sometimes, when you change your WordPress website design or content, you won’t see the change right away in your Chrome browser. You might think that something is wrong with your website or that your hosting server is unable to serve the updated content. 

However, the problem can be as simple as you have not cleared your Chrome browser cache and it is serving the previously-stored cached version of your web page on your computer or mobile device. 

To fix this issue, you either need to refresh your page many times or you can clear your Chrome browser cache by the following method.

  • Open your Chrome browser.
  • On the top right-hand side, click on the three dots.
  • Hover over the “More tools” option from the drop-down menu and click on Clear Browsing Data.
  • A pop-up screen will emerge that will give you the time range to clear your browsing history from the last 24 hours, 7 days, or last 4 weeks, or you can choose to clear all your cookies.
wordpress local
  • Below the Time range, you have the option to select from three checkboxes. 
  • The first check box clears only your browsing history and browsing data. 
  • The second check box clears the cookies and other site data and you may sign out of most websites automatically. 
  • The third check box clears cached images/files. The next time you visit a website that you previously visited, its images may take a little time to load.   
  • Choose your time frame, select all three checkboxes, and then click on Clear Data.
  • Wait for a few seconds to let the process complete and restart your Chrome browser.
  • Lastly, visit your WordPress website. Now, you’ll be able to see the changes you made recently on your website. 

Other than caching issues, you can face many common problems and for that, we have prepared a guide for you on easy fixes to the most common WordPress issues.

WP-Rocket Caching Issue

wordpress wp rocket

WP-Rocket is one of the best WordPress cache plugins. It builds your WordPress in the background so that your users are always served a cached version of your page.  

You can clear your website cache with a single click while using WP-Rocket. Go to your WordPress dashboard and go to your installed plugins. Next, select WP-Rocket and go to its Settings. Click on the Clear Cache button under the WP-Rocket’s dashboard to clear all cached files. 

If you are having a caching issue with WP-Rocket, make sure that you meet the minimum requirements to install the plugin. Secondly, remove all traces of the previous caching plugin within the wp-content cache folder. Also, remember to log out from your website to see its cached version.  

How To Check If WP-Rocket is Caching Your Web Pages?

You can use the following methods to check if WP-Rocket is caching your website.

  • Log out from your website.
  • Open your webpage. Right-click and click on the View page source and scroll to the bottom.
  • Verify that you see a text in green color that shows the WP-Rocket cache footprint
wordpress wp rocket problem
  • Next, download and install the Wappalyzer Chrome extension. Visit your website/web page and check if WP-Rocket is listed under the cached tools. This will verify that your caching is working.
wordpress wp rocket problem

The last step is to look for your cached folders and files on your server. First, make sure that you are logged out and then visit your several web page so that they can get cached. Use the FTP application or File Manager in your web hosting control panel and go to Public→ wp-content→ Cache → wp-rocket. You should see another folder with your domain name. In this particular folder, you can see your cached HTML files along with your other website pages.

wordpress problem wp rocket

W3 Total Caching Issue

wordpress w3 total caching issue fix

W3 total is one of the favorite WordPress plugins for many website owners. However, it has its downsides and things can go wrong with it sometimes.

Most of the time, users face installation and cache setting issues on W3 Total Cache. Let’s take a look at a few of these problems and find solutions to fix them.

If you are doing a fresh W3 Total Cache plugin install on a new WordPress website, it’s highly unlikely that you will face any problems. On the other hand, if you have deleted a plugin and then installed W3C, it can have problems overwriting previous plugin settings.

To fix this issue, enable all options in the Browser cache tab under W3C Settings except leave blank for the following entries in the image.

wordpress w3 total

Sometimes, you may get an error with W3 Total Cache that page caching is not available. You can fix this issue by manually deleting all the previous caching plugin entries and resetting the .htaccess file.

Another common issue with W3C is that even if you log out, the admin bar still shows on top. To fix this issue, disable the “Cache pages for logged-in users” option under the W3C settings. 

If your website theme uses the call php_flush() function, you may see garbage characters on your web pages while using the W3 Total Cache plugin. The fix is simple, you have to remove the call function as you are forcing the plugin to send the cached files before the essential elements.

Comet Cache Caching Issue

 comet cache problem

Comet cache helps you speed up your WordPress website. The Comet Cache plugin caching issues happen when you are not using it on a clean WordPress install. 

If you think that Comet Cache is not caching your web pages, you can look for the following problems and fix them.

Comet Cache is incompatible with the following plugins. It is best to remove or deactivate these plugins before using Comet Cache. 

  • CSS-JS Booster 
  • Force Gzip
  • Mobble
  • Remove WMPU Dashboard Notification Nag
  • Hazel Theme
  • Plainview Activity Monitor

Secondly, some plugins strip HTML comments from your source page. Therefore, it would seem to you that Comet Cache is not working on your website. To fix this, disable those plugins that are used to minify HTML, purge your cache and check again if it solves the problem.

If you are using a cache plugin other than Comet Cache, this can cause a conflict and your WordPress website may be displayed as broken. Therefore, it is recommended that you always use one caching plugin at a time and delete all traces of your previous caching plugin.

Sometimes, Comet Cache shows your mobile website theme on your desktop and your desktop theme on your mobile website. It means that Comet cache is caching your mobile theme and showing it to your desktop users. 

To fix this issue, tell Comet Cache to disable caching for mobile devices. Depending on your browser, specify user agent exclusion patterns under Comet Cache Settings. The following figure shows an example of that.

 comet cache

Autoptomize Caching Issue

autoptomize caching problem

The autoptimize caching plugin is another popular WordPress plugin to clear your website cache. It can optimize your website from the ground up. 

The Autoptomize plugin is very easy to install and set up. All you have to do is install and activate it on your WordPress website. 

To clear your WordPress website cache:

  • Go to the Autoptimize plugin in your WordPress dashboard
  • Go to the Settings page
  • Select the Maximum cache file size to clear the cache automatically when the limit is reached
wordpress autoptomize

However, quite a few users face the issue that their website cache fills up very quickly with Autoptimizer. You can deactivate the “Aggregate inline JS” and “Aggregate inline CSS” to counter this issue. Also, you can exclude JS variables that can change on a per-page basis. 

Alternatively, you can use the Cache Enabler plugin along with the Autoptimzer to clear your website cache automatically. To minimize the load on your server, you can use the options on Cache Enabler to clear your cache when a comment is made or a new post is published. You can also set the time limit for your cache to expire as well.

wordpress autoptomize problem

By using these plugins together, you can minimize a great deal of load on your server and your WordPress website will function much faster.

Breeze Caching Issue

breeze caching issue

Breeze is a caching plugin that is launched by Cloudways. It aims to decrease web page load times and perform caching on multiple levels. Also, Breeze supports CDN integration and has a built-in Varnish cache. Even if Varnish is not installed on your server, Breeze will leverage the internal caching mechanism.

To install the Breeze cache plugin for WordPress and clear your cache:

  • Go to your WordPress dashboard and select Add New Plugin
  • Search for Breeze, install and activate it
  • Open the Breeze Plugin Settings
  • Go to Basic options and check the HTML and CSS boxes under Minification
breeze caching problem
  • Also, check the browser cache box
  • Under Advanced options, select CSS for group files
  • Finally, Hit on Clear Cache

Breeze is a great caching plugin. However, a few users reported that Breeze is caching all pages even if the “Enable Cache For Logged In Users” is off. Some users also reported that Breeze cache breaks their blog archives and post comments. 

To fix these issues, disable the “Enable Cache For Logged In Users” option and then clear the Breeze cache again. 

Secondly, your website can break if another plugin is conflicting with the Breeze plugin. Deactivate your plugins one by one and see which plugin is causing the conflict. Delete that plugin or use another one that works with Breeze. 

Cloudflare Caching Issue

Cloudflare WordPress caching issues

Cloudflare is a popular CDN (Content Delivery Network). This cache lasts for 2 hours in the free plan, 1 hour in the Pro plan, and 30 minutes in the Business plan. You can purge your cache by logging in to the Cloudflare dashboard and using the following methods.

  • Purge cache by single URL.
  • Purge cache by single file.
  • Clear everything.
cloudflare caching problem

Furthermore, you can clear your caches by single URL, single file, or all files through the Cloudflare APIs as well. 

Quite a few users faced issues that Cloudflare is not caching their content. A few other users also find it difficult to clear their WordPress website cache and minify their code. 

All of these issues can manifest if you are using Cloudflare to cache your website and you are caching it locally on the server too. While using Cloudflare, you don’t need another caching plugin. Therefore, choose either Cloudflare caching or use another WP Plugin. 

wordpress caching issues cloudflare

Also, you can encounter different problems if you use Cloudflare to optimize or minify your WordPress website code. It is a great idea to use an optimization plugin to minify your website code along with Cloudflare caching your website. 

While troubleshooting Cloudflare caching issues, disable your optimization plugin and purge every level of your website cache. Afterwards, wait a few minutes and see if any caching issue persists. 

Varnish Caching Issue

varnish wordpress caching issues

This cache directly listens to requests of specific content all the time instead of your web server. 

Varnish cache the requests in PHP that come for the first time. As a result, your WordPress website loads faster, and the performance of your applications increases. 

If you have a WordPress website and you cache your content with Varnish cache, you might have faced a Varnish cache server error 503. This error happens when the Varnish cache can not reach the back-end server. This can either be due to too many requests, timeouts, and the length of the cache tags.

wordpress varnish

To fix these issues:

  • Check whether the port, original server, or HTTP are operating correctly
  • Make sure your Apache server listens to port 8080
  • Add correct values for .first_byte_timeout and .connect_timeout 
  • Increase the default cache length by using http_resp_hdr_len and http_resp_size parameters
varnish caching problem fixing code

Ezoic Caching Issue

ezoic caching problem

Ezoic is a great platform for publishers that provides them automated website intelligence for their content, ads, etc. 

The Ezoic cloud caching increases your WordPress website speed and configures your cache settings correctly by serving the cached content faster. Ezoic follows any pre-existing rules for caching. However, if no rules are set, Ezoic default caching settings becomes active.

You can clear your WordPress site cache with a click of a button with Ezoic. Furthermore, you can choose to clear your single URL cache or site-wide cache. 

Using a caching plugin on your website along with Ezoic may cause a conflict. At the time of this writing, W3 Total Cache, WP Super Cache, and WP Rocket Cache are the known caching plugins that can work with Ezoic. 

If you have installed another caching plugging other than the compatible plugins, you may experience caching and performance problems. Therefore, use only the compatible WordPress caching plugins with Ezoic. 

To fix Ezoic cache refresh issues and make content update faster on your WordPress website:

  • Update your cache setting values to purge your cache faster. You can manually configure the default cache age from 30 days (2592000 seconds) to 1 day (86400 seconds)
ezoic wordpress caching issues
  • Purge cache by URL to update content faster
  • Set a page-level rule to cache specific URLs for a shorter amount of time
ezoic caching fix
  • Exclude specific URLs from Ezoic caching so that they can always default to that specified on the origin server
ezoic fix

Conclusion

WordPress caching issues can negatively impact the performance and speed of your website. We tried to help you diagnose and provide you with step-by-step fixes for your local caching, plugin caching, CDN caching, hosting service caching, and ad network caching issues. Good Luck!!