If you’re trying to make a page for your podcast at
/podcast but keep getting
/podcast-2, then you have a WordPress slug conflict. I’ll show you how to fix that in WordPress and PowerPress.
## What is a “slug” in WordPress?
A “slug” in WordPress is the part of the URL unique to the page, post, or taxonomy. It comes after a slash and sometimes has a trailing slash.
The slug is derived from the title. For example, create a page called “About” and the slug will be
about and the page will be accessible at
myawesomepodcast.com/about. If you make a post called, “Why I podcast,” then your slug will be “why-i-podcast” and your post can be visited at
Some plugins, like WordPress SEO, will remove certain words from the slug, such as “the,” “or,” “and,” and others. This is to clean up the slug for search-engine optimization.
WordPress slugs must be unique
Every page, post, tag, category, and other taxonomy creates its own slug for each instance of content. These slugs must be globally unique. If you have a tag called “Podcasting” with the slug
podcasting, then you won’t be allowed to make a category with the same slug. WordPress would insist that your category named “Podcasting” have the slug
WordPress adds the hyphen and number to identical slugs in order to prevent duplicates. Every slug must be unique.
How to fix slugs without PowerPress: check everywhere
If you don’t have PowerPress activated, but you’re still having trouble making a page with the
podcast (or any other) slug, then you need to resolve the conflict. There are several places you should check. If you need to change an existing slug, consider making it more verbose, or adding and abbreviation (like
tap-podcast instead of
WordPress already reserves several slugs—
rss2—so the following steps will not work to try using these slugs.
- Posts and post trash—Have you previously created any post that used the same slug you’re trying to use? Also look at your trash because any post in the trash still reserves the slug. Change the slug or permanently delete the offending post. (You don’t have to change the visible title.)
- Pages and page trash—Just like posts, any previously created page with the same slug, even if it’s in the trash, is still reserving that slug. Change the slug or permanently delete the offending page. (You don’t have to change the visible title.)
- Categories—Look for any categories that use the slug you’re trying to use. Change the slug or delete the offending category. (You don’t have to change the visible title.)
- Tags—Like categories, look for any tags that use the slug you’re trying to use. Change the slug or delete the offending tag. (You don’t have to change the visible title.)
- The WordPress database—If the offending slug isn’t visibly being used by any page, post, or taxonomy in WordPress, there could be a leftover database entry to delete. This is for advanced users and you must backup your WordPress database (I recommend BackupBuddy) in case you break anything. You need to look at “post_name” in the “wp_posts” table and “slug” in the “wp_terms” table.
PowerPress reserves the
When you activate the PowerPress podcasting plugin for WordPress, PowerPress reserves the
podcast slug if it is not already taken. WordPress then forces a hyphen and number to any future attempts at creating a
podcast slug, so that the slugs remain unique
How to fix slugs with PowerPress: order and faith
I don’t mean to sound mystical; this solution really does require faith—believing something despite what you see.
Let’s review how this works. WordPress forces slugs to be unique, PowerPress reserves the
podcast slug upon activation (if it wasn’t already used), so WordPress will then prevent the
podcast slug from being used again and redirect any request for
/podcast to whatever reserved that slug.
Additionally, PowerPress’s default behavior will redirect a request for
/podcast to your podcast-only RSS feed, which is usually
Here’s how to fix everything and get the
podcast slug exactly where you want it.
- Do not activate PowerPress. If it’s already activated, deactivate it. (You don’t need to delete it.)
- Create your page, post, category, tag, or whatever thing you want with the
- Reactivate PowerPress.
- Go to PowerPress > Settings.
- “Switch to advanced mode” if you’re not already in it (the mode with multiple tabs).
- Go to the “Basic Settings” tab.
- Scroll down to “Podcast Permalinks” and change the option from “Default WordPress Behavior” to “Match Feed Name to Page/Category” (pictured above). This employs a little hack that allows PowerPress to still have
/podcastfor feed URLs.
- Revisit your content with the
podcastslug and it will look like it’s using
podcast-2, but type the full address into your browser and you’ll see that it still works. This is where your faith comes in; believe that
podcastcontinues to work even though WordPress is showing you
You may need to deactivate PowerPress before you make any changes to your /podcast page. Just re-activate it when you finish and you’ll be good to go.
“404” errors and permalinks
Permalinks are how WordPress links to content. You can change their format in Settings > Permalinks. I recommend using “Post Name.”
If you receive “404” or “page not found” errors on links that you know should be working, it may be that you just need to resave your Permalinks settings.
Whenever you click “Save Changes” in PowerPress, it is also resaving the Permalinks settings.
Now you can use /podcast on your site
With these steps out of the way, you can now use the /podcast URL to point to a page about your podcast, the “podcast” category, or anything else you want.
Need personalized podcasting help?
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