If you have created thousands of posts in WordPress, you should have created excerpts for them. You know. Excerpts are great because they give your readers the main idea of the content so that they decide if they’re worth reading.
The problem is that sometimes we don’t create excerpts for our posts at the moment of writing them, and it can be somewhat hard and boring having to create a lot of excerpts. You’d have to open your posts one by one, write the excerpt, save changes, and repeat the process as many times as necessary.
However, we want to show you how to generate excerpts for your posts automatically. Then, we’ll show you how to quickly edit the excerpts using a spreadsheet plugin.
1- How to auto-generate excerpts
To do this, you’ll need to download the WP Excerpt Generator plugin. This is a great plugin that generates excerpts for your posts automatically with one click. Something great is that if works in English and French.
Once installed and activated, open the plugin by going to Settings > Excerpt Generator. Once there, you’ll find these General Settings:
- Keep the existing excerpts or replace them: Keep existing excerpts or regenerate them all.
- Generate excerpts for what content: Posts, Pages, or Posts + Pages
- Generate excerpts for content published or planned: Published, Scheduled, or Both
- Generator method for the excerpts: Here you can select how you want your posts to be generated: word count, letter count, paragraph count, etc.
- Number of paragraphs to keep (maximum): Select the number.
- Keep the HTML code? (not recommended): Select your desired option.
- Keep line breaks: Select Yes or No.
- Add a string to the end of the excerpt: Select Yes or No.
- Remove shortcodes in excerpts: Select Yes or No.
Once you have selected the options you want, you just need to click Generate the excerpts, and all your posts will be modified. The excerpts will be generated form post content.
2- How to edit excerpts using a spreadsheet
Once you have generated the excerpts, you may want to check them quickly and apply changes in seconds without having to open a lot of tabs. Of course, this can’t be done in WordPress. You need some help here, and that’s what the Posts, Pages, and Custom Post Types Spreadsheet plugin aims to do.
With this spreadsheet, you can do advanced searches and edit thousands of posts in minutes. You can also export or import information using CSV files edited with Excel or Google Sheets.
Once installed, go to Sheet Editor > Edit Posts to open the spreadsheet, you’ll see all your posts displayed on it.
a) Edit post excerpts one by one in the spreadsheet
For this, just go to the Excerpt column, double click it, see the content, and make changes if necessary. If not, just skip it and open another excerpt.
Once you’ve edited your excerpts, click on Save on the toolbar to apply the changes.
b) Bulk edit excerpts using the “Bulk Edit” tool
To bulk edit the excerpts, you need to first open the Bulk Edit tool. It’s on the toolbar, so just click on it.
Optional: Filter the posts you’ll edit
You can filter all the posts you want to edit. For example, you can search for all the posts containing a keyword in the excerpts in order to replace it by another one.
For this, first select the I want to search rows to update option in the Select the rows that you want to update dropdown.
Next, tick the Enable advanced filters checkbox and select these values:
- Field key: Excerpt (post_excerpt)
- Operator: CONTAINS
- Value: Enter the keyword you want to use as a search parameter here.
After that, click on Run search to filter your posts containing the selected keyword in the excerpt.
c) Replace a word in an excerpt for all the filtered posts
If you want to replace a word in excerpt for all the filtered posts, just select these simple values:
- Select the rows that you want to update: I want to select rows to update
- What field do you want to edit: Excerpt
- Select type of edit: Replace
- Replace this: Enter the word you want to delete
- With this: Enter the word you want to insert.
- Click on Execute now.
That’s how you generate auto excerpts with the WP Excerpt Generator plugin. It’s really simple. Also, that’s how you can quickly edit thousands of post excerpts using the Posts, Pages, and Custom Post Types Spreadsheet plugin. Both tools helps you save a lot of time when generating excerpts, filtering your posts, or applying massive changes to them.