How to convert your blog’s full post to excerpt format – Part 2

A few weeks ago we should you how to convert a WordPress theme that was designed to show full posts into one that should excerpts instead. We included instructions on hacking your theme but someone showed us an oldie but goodie plugin called Evermore that might get rid of the need to hack your theme.

Here’s how it looks like once it’s activated:


As you can see above, it will even let you define the length of the excerpts by the number of paragraphs and/or character length.

The only catch is that it was last updated in Feburary 2009 but it worked well with our test WordPress 3.1.1 installation, so give it a try on a test site first if possible.

Get it: Evermore

Quick Tip: How to replace full posts with excerpts on home page

If you have seen a WordPress theme that you’d like to use but don’t like that it shows a full post and want to show only an excerpt? Don’t fret, as modifying the theme to show only excerpts is pretty easy to do.

This assumes that you’ve edited WordPress theme files before and I recommend you have a back up of your theme files that you can easily upload to fix any potential problems but other than that it’s straight forward.

In WordPress admin, open Appearance -> Editor -> and select Main Index (“index.php”).

Then find the code:

php the_content('Read the rest of this entry »'); ?>

and replace it with:

<?php the_excerpt(); ?>

Note this code maybe not always be in the index.php file, it may been in a theme specific loop file. If you’re an advanced user, your best bet maybe is to add this to the bottom of your functions.php page via the instructions at WP Recipes.

Bonus – WordPress post excerpt resources:
The second thing you’ll want to do is to install the Better Excerpt plugin that will let you customize the length of your excerpt and replace the […] with your own text plus a hyperlink to the full post.

If you need more information on posts/excerpts, here’s a great post at

Update: if you want the quick and easy way, check out the Evermore plugin mini review…

Quick Tip: Add excerpts to search results page

If you’ve tried searching for a keyword on a WP site, you may have noticed that the search results don’t always include an excerpt of matching page(s). While you’re at it, have you tried the search function on your site? The missing excerpt is not WordPress’s fault, in reality the theme designer neglected or chose not to include that feature in the theme.

Here’s how to quickly add an excerpt to your search results page by hacking your theme. Important: make sure you have a copy of your original theme and/or backup the existing search.php page ready to restore in case you get in trouble. We’re not responsible if you muck up your site.

In WordPress admin, select Appearance -> Editor -> Search.php (screenshot below) Add the following tag after the end of the headline tag, usually </h2>:

<?php the_excerpt(); ?>

And hit “Save” and go try a search on your site!


Another tip, now that you’ve improved it with excerpts,  why not improve it further by trying Relevanssi plugin? Relevannsi will help bump up the quality of matching results. You’ll still need to  do a bit of work tagging your posts or pages but it’s worth it.