Remove Powered by WordPress from footer credits Tutorial

📂 Category: PHP

🖺 Last modified: 16th Oct 2020

💻 Experience: Beginner - Intermediate

🕑 Read Time: 7 min

Most free WordPress themes come with a footer credit to the theme’s development team. In many cases developers will want to remove the footer credit or replace it with some custom text. This tutorial will show you a detailed, step by step procedure to remove Powered by WordPress or any other footer credit from your theme.

Is it legal to remove footer credits from WordPress themes

All default WordPress themes such as Twenty Twenty, Twenty Nineteen etc. are distributed under the GNU GPL version 2.0 license. This license allows users to modify the theme, including removal of theme parts, such as footer credits. In other words, you are free to remove Powered by WordPress from from footer credits of any default theme that comes preinstalled with WP.

Most other free WP themes available for download in the WordPress Themes Directory are also distributed under the GNU GPL 2.0 license. Same as with the default themes, you are allowed to remove footer credits from those themes as well. Before you decide to remove Powered by WordPress or any other footer credit text from those themes, make sure that they are GNU GPL 2.0 licensed. Check for any other disclaimer about modifying the theme files in the legal docs that come with the theme.

NOTE: Some themes not only allow you to remove Powered by WordPress, but even offer an option to remove it. So before you move on, check your theme’s Customizer or Theme Options located inside the Dashboard’s Appearance menu. There you might find the option to remove or even replace the footer credit text. In case your theme doesn’t offer that option, this tutorial will show you a couple of ways to do it.

Remove Powered by WordPress Plugin method

The simplest method to remove Powered by WordPress footer credits from a WP theme is using a plugin. This method is suited for less experienced WordPress users and non coders since there is no need for editing template files. There are a couple of free plugins in the WP Plugins Repository that will do the job well.

Remove Powered by WP plugin by Webd Ltd is the simplest plugin for removing footer credits. The plugin works out of the box without the need for any action from the user. Unfortunately, the plugin works only with default WP themes, from Twenty Twenty down to Twenty Ten. Therefore, if you’re using some other theme, you will have to look for another solution.

Remove Footer Credit plugin by MachoThemes will remove Powered by WordPress from any WP theme, not just the default ones. This plugin doesn’t work out of the box and it needs some setting up upon installation. The plugin settings are located inside the WP Dashboard Tools tab. On the settings page you have to manually enter the footer credits text string or HTML code you wish to remove. There’s also the option not just to remove footer credits, but to replace the credits with custom text or HTML code.

Remove Powered by WordPress footer credit plugins

Extreme simplicity of the Remove Powered by WordPress plugin on the left vs. the more customizable Remove Footer Credit plugin on the right.

Remove Powered by WordPress footer credits manually from footer.php

Removing or replacing footer credits from WordPress themes using a plugin is quite simple and suited for non coders. In the other hand, to remove Powered by WordPress manually requires at least some coding experience and understanding of WP template files. Experienced developers avoid using to many unnecessary plugins and they will rather choose the manual method. With the manual removal method you don’t need to worry about plugin updates, development discontinuation or other compatibility with your theme.

Pro Tip: When editing WordPress template files, make sure you firstly create a Child Theme and edit your files there. That way all the changes you’ve done to the template files won’t get lost once you update the main theme. That’s specially important now that the latest versions of WordPress offers automatic updates and makes it easier to loose your edits.

In virtually all WP themes, the piece of code that generates the footer credits is located inside the footer.php template file. So, the first step to remove Powered by WordPress or any other footer credit text is to open your theme’s footer.php file inside the Theme Editor. In the WP Dashboard’s left column menu, open the Appearance tab and click on the Theme Editor. You’ll find the footer.php file inside the theme files list on the right of your screen. Now let’s look up for the footer credits code snippet.

Remove Powered by WordPress from default WP themes ( Twenty Twenty, Twenty Nineteen, etc..)

To remove Powered by WordPress footer credits from default WP themes such as Twenty Twenty, Twenty Nineteen, etc. firstly open your footer.php file as described earlier. Now you have to locate the PHP code snippet that generates the footer credits. That codes varies by format and location from theme to theme. To make it easier for you, here’s how the footer credits code looks like in different default WordPress themes:

/* Remove from Twenty Twenty */

<p class="powered-by-wordpress">
<a href="<?php echo esc_url( __( 'https://wordpress.org/', 'twentytwenty' ) ); ?>">
<?php _e( 'Powered by WordPress', 'twentytwenty' ); ?></a>
</p>

/* Remove from Twenty Nineteen */

<a href="<?php echo esc_url( __( 'https://wordpress.org/', 'twentynineteen' ) ); ?>" class="imprint">
<?php 	/* translators: %s: WordPress. */
printf( __( 'Proudly powered by %s.', 'twentynineteen' ), 'WordPress' ); ?>
</a>

/* Remove from Twenty Seventeen */

get_template_part( 'template-parts/footer/site', 'info' );

/* Remove from Twenty Sixteen */

<a href="<?php echo esc_url( __( 'https://wordpress.org/', 'twentysixteen' ) ); ?>" class="imprint">
<?php 	/* translators: %s: WordPress */
printf( __( 'Proudly powered by %s', 'twentysixteen' ), 'WordPress' ); ?>
</a>

NOTE: The Twenty Nineteen theme additionally displays a comma symbol before the footer credits. Make sure to remove that too, it’s located at the end of the following line of code:

/* 2019: Remove the comma at the end */

<a class="site-name" href="<?php echo esc_url( home_url( '/' ) ); ?>" rel="home"><?php bloginfo( 'name' ); ?></a>, 

If you’ve done everything correctly, after saving the changes and refreshing your website, you should notice the Proudly Powered by WordPress credit text disappeared from the footer. Instead of just removing the footer credits, you can even replace the code snippets above with some custom code and your own credits.

How to remove footer credits from other WordPress themes?

As you could notice from the examples above, the structure of the code that generates the footer credits changes from theme to theme. Still it follows a similar pattern and it’s located around the same place in the footer.php file, no matter which theme you use. To remove Powered by WordPress or any custom footer credit text from any WP theme, firstly we have to analyze the website’s footer HTML code. Let’s take for example Astra, one of the most popular free themes from the WordPress Themes Directory.

Astra theme’s footer credits say “Powered by Astra WordPress Theme”. Now let’s use our browser’s property inspector to analyze that HTML element. In Chrome browser, we’ll right click on the footer credits text and choose Inspect from the context menu. The procedure is similar in other browsers too. In the website code we got to look for the first parent element wrapping the footer credits text. In our example Astra theme, the footer credits are wrapped with the <div class=”ast-small-footer-section ast-small-footer-section-1″> HTML element. Now let’s look up for the code that generates that element inside the theme’s footer.php template file.

Removing footer credits by manually editing template files

First thing you’ll notice is that the footer.php template file doesn’t include the code that generate the footer elements, but it calls other template parts instead. In this case, we have to look for the footer template part in the theme’s /template-parts/footer/ folder. The class of the div element we inspected earlier will help us locate the exact template file. According to the ast-small-footer-section-1 wrapping div class, we’ll open the footer-sml-layout.php and look for the footer credits code there.

Remove Powered by WordPress from footer manually

The screenshoot shows the exact location of the code snippet that generates the footer credits of the Astra WP theme.

Inside the footer-sml-layout.php we’ll find the previously inspected div containing the <php echo $section_1; ?> PHP code. That’s the code that generates the footer credits text. Remove that code from the template file and save the changes. When you refresh the website in your browser, the footer credits text will be gone. Now you can add some custom footer credits inside that div and have a customized footer for your website.

With just a bit of experience and understanding of WordPress template files, you should be able to remove Powered by WordPress or any other footer credits from any WP theme. The procedure will be quite similar to what we showed in the previous example.

Learn more about the WordPress footer

There are many ways to further customize the footer in WordPress. Did you know that you can even create different footers for various sections of your website. To learn how to do it, please move on to our Multiple footers in WordPress tutorial.