Need a WordPress audio playlist plugin to make it easy for your visitors to listen to audio content at your WordPress site? In this post, we'll show you how to use the Posts Table Pro WordPress audio playlist plugin to create two different styles of audio playlists on your WordPress site.
A WordPress audio playlist plugin is a great solution for:
- Podcasts - you can display all your latest episodes in one easy-to-navigate playlist.
- Music - visitors can choose between different tracks. Or, you can include multiple playlists on a single page.
- An audio library - visitors can search, sort, and filter to find specific audio content.
- Portfolios - if you work with audio in any way, you can use the plugin to display your work in a portfolio.
- Any other type of audio that you need to display!
Keep reading to find out how to set it up.
Posts Table Pro is a flexible WordPress audio playlist plugin
If you think about it, an audio playlist is really just a table that includes information like:
- Track name
- Track length
- Play/pause button
Since Posts Table Pro lets you display any content from your WordPress site in a flexible table, it's perfectly suited to creating an audio playlist on your site.
And because Posts Table Pro focuses on customization and flexibility, you'll also gain more granular control over your playlist than other WordPress audio playlist plugins. You'll be able to:
- Allow users to search, sort, and filter your playlist (if desired).
- Control exactly what information displays on your playlist. For example, you can even include a short text description to go along with each audio file.
- Display each track as a separate listing to create a single playlist or display multiple separate playlists on a single page.
How to use Posts Table Pro to create a WordPress audio playlist
The general process for using Posts Table Pro as a WordPress audio playlist plugin goes as follows:
- Create a custom post type to store audio files (while not required, this simplifies things a good bit).
- Add individual audio files or playlists to WordPress.
- Use the Posts Table Pro shortcode to display your audio playlist anywhere on your site.
Step 1: Create a custom post type to store audio files
While you can create an audio playlist from audio files that you add to regular WordPress posts and pages, creating a dedicated custom post type for your audio files makes it much easier to stay organized.
It also only takes a few seconds and doesn't require any code. To create your custom post type, the free Pods plugin does a great job.
We recommend naming it something easy to remember, like "audio". But the actual name isn't super important!
Optionally, if you want to include extra information about each track, you should also use Pods to create some relevant custom fields. Beyond that, you can also enable Excerpts in the Advanced Options tab in Pods if you want to display a text description alongside each track's title.
Step 2: Add the audio files that you want to include in your playlist
Now that you've created a custom post type to house your audio tracks, you're ready to actually add the audio tracks that you want to use in your playlist.
You can do this in two different ways:
- Add a single track to each post - this will display each audio track as a separate item in your table. This is what you'll want to do most of the time.
- Use the core WordPress playlist functionality - this essentially lets you create a "playlist of playlists". For example, you could use this to list multiple albums or multiple podcast series on a single page.
How to add a single track to each post
To add a single track to each post, you can either:
- Upload your audio files directly to the WordPress Media Library if you want to self-host your audio files.
- Embed an audio file from a third-party platform (e.g. SoundCloud) using the built-in WordPress embed functionality (Add Media → Insert From URL)
Either way, it should look something like this once you've added your file:
Or if you're using the Gutenberg editor, then insert the 'Audio' block.
How to create a "playlist of playlists"
To embed multiple playlists on a single page, you can embed multiple audio files as a single list item by using the core WordPress playlist functionality. The exact method depends on whether you are using the Gutenberg or Class WordPress editor:
Creating playlists with Gutenberg
Gutenberg doesn't have a Playlist block yet, so you should insert a Shortcode block and add the built-in WordPress Playlist shortcode.
Creating playlists with the Classic WordPress Editor
- Upload multiple audio files to your media library via the Add Media button
- Click the Create Audio Playlist link on the left-hand side
- Embed your audio playlist in the custom post type
Step 3: Use the Posts Table Pro plugin to create your playlist
Once you've added your audio files and playlists using one of the methods above, you're ready to actually display your playlist on the frontend of your site using the Posts Table Pro shortcode. You can add this shortcode to a regular WordPress post or page.
The base shortcode looks something like this:
Where "audio" is the actual slug for the custom post type that you created.
To make your table look like a playlist, though, you'll want to add some additional shortcode parameters.
While you can view a full list of shortcode options at the help article linked above, we're going to skip straight to our recommended setup for most audio playlists:
[posts_table post_type="audio" columns="content:Listen Now,title,excerpt:Description" shortcodes="true" links="none"]
This shortcode lists the:
- Audio player
- Title (pulled from the custom post type entry's title)
- Description (pulled from the custom post type entry's excerpt)
It should look something like this:
And if you opt for the "playlist of playlists" approach, it might look a little more like this:
How to change the style of the audio player
If you don't like how the core WordPress audio player looks or functions, Posts Table Pro is compatible with many other audio player plugins to allow you to customize how your audio playlist functions.
Some good options are:
- mb.miniAudioPlayer - more minimalist than the core player. It only expands when a user hits the play button.
- Compact WP Audio Player - an even more minimalist option than mb.miniAudioPlayer.
- Seriously Simple Podcasting - a player targeted towards podcasters. This plugin also eliminates the need to use a custom post type to store your audio files (because it creates the custom post type for you). Check out our separate tutorial on how to use Posts Table Pro with Seriously Simple Podcasting.
Start using this WordPress audio playlist plugin today!
By using Posts Table Pro as a WordPress audio playlist plugin, you gain the ability to control exactly what information displays in your playlist, as well as how your visitors can interact with your playlist in terms of searching, filtering, pagination, and more. Visit the audio playlist plugin knowledge base to see all the options and how to use them.
Whether you're creating a playlist of individual audio tracks or a "playlist of playlists", Posts Table Pro can help you get the job done.