How to Use WordPress Pagination

How to Enable and Use WordPress Pagination

Let’s say you wanted more control over what pagination looked like on your site, from next and last arrows, to numbers, to colors and styles. You could go in and edit your css manually to make all of the necessary changes to color and styling, but some options would still be left out. This is where plugins are useful.

Simple Pagination plugin for WordPress

The Simple Pagination plugin does a good job of making it easy to change what is displayed by your website on archive pages and other sections where pagination is in use or enabled. There is a simple section under WordPress Settings where you can go to adjust all of the changes to how pagination is displayed.

Make sure you save your changes!

Setting up Simple Pagination on WordPress

The only caveat with using this plugin, is that you have to replace the normal functions in the loop code of your theme files to point to the proper functions. You have to replace your next_posts_link and last_posts_link function calls and replace them with this string of code.

<?php if(function_exists('wp_simple_pagination')) {
} ?>

If this appears too complicated, we would highly recommend not messing with the PHP and instead recommend contacting someone to make those style changes for you. Messing with PHP can have some negative consequences.

You can download the plugin Simple Pagination from the WordPress repository or on the GeekPress website (the creators of the plugin).

Canonical URLs with Pagination

Whether you are using the built in functionality of WordPress to paginate within a post or doing something more custom with pages, comments, or media with a plugin, make sure you are defining the proper URL as the “canonical URL”.

It is possible to overuse pagination to the point that it becomes detrimental to your SEO! Google can see pagination as a spammy attempt to get people to simply click on a lot of different pages. Make sure to designate the first page as a canonical URL so Google knows which page to rank over all of the others. This will typically be the first page in the article as it introduces the concepts of the article and has the most relevant information to the goals of the article.

We hope you liked the content in this article. Try, clicking back to Page 1 to yet again embrace the power of pagination. 😉


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