WordPress Reading Time Plugins to Calculate Content Length

5 WordPress Reading Time Plugins to Calculate Content Length

Last Updated October 13th, 2022

Measuring how long your WordPress posts and pages are is something all prolific writers want to do. Coincidentally, it’s also something many readers want to know as well. Adding a piece of content’s reading time, in minutes and seconds, is a popular thing to do on modern blogs and websites. There are a lot of standard formulas available to calculate reading time. Fortunately, there is a handful of quite useful WordPress reading time plugins that can handle this for you automatically. Let’s take a look at the best plugins for displaying reading time.

Popular WordPress Reading Time Plugins

The following list of WordPress reading time plugins contains the most popular options at WordPress.org. All of the plugins on this list are available to download and use for free. Every plugin but one is entirely free. The only exception offers features far and beyond just reading time displays to justify the expense.

Reading Time WP

Reading Time WP

Reading Time WP is the #1 WordPress plugin for adding a reading time display to your blog posts. This free plugin will automatically, with no work required, insert the estimated reading time right into the beginning of your content. Of course, if you want to make some changes Reading Time WP has you covered. There is a settings screen that lets you adjust the text surrounding the reading time display. A shortcode is included as well if you would prefer to display the reading time in a more manual way in which you decide on a post-by-post basis.

Plugin Details

This product was initially released by its developer in November of 2014. It is presently on version 2.0.12 and last experienced a change on September 8th, 2022. The newest release works on WordPress 6.0.3. This plugin is actively operating on over 20,000 WordPress sites. It has had over 208,380 downloads. There have been 3 support requests with a 33% response rate. Reading Time WP has below average support from its creator. Reviews for Reading Time WP are very positive. Many of the users who left an evaluation found this plugin to be great.

Read Meter

Read Meter

Read Meter is the first visually interesting WordPress reading time plugin on our list. You can use this plugin to not only display your content’s reading time in the text but with a progress bar as well. This progress bar will move along with your reader as they consume your content. This means that as your visitors scroll the Read Meter bar will move along with them to indicate how much of the article is remaining. One feature that really makes this plugin stand out is its ability to calculate images into the reading time figure. In short, Read Meter adds time-based on the number of images and photos in your post. Many reading time plugins fail to accommodate for media like that.

Plugin Details

This piece of software was originally published by its developer in June of 2019. It is actively on version 1.0.6 and last saw a change on November 23rd, 2022. The most recent update functions on WordPress 6.1.1 and requires at least PHP 5.2 to operate on your server. This plugin is currently working on over 10,000 WordPress sites. It has had over 38,570 downloads. There have been 3 help requests with a 33% response rate. Read Meter – Reading Time & Progress Bar has below average support from its creator. Reviews for Read Meter – Reading Time & Progress Bar are very positive. Many of the users who left a piece of feedback found Read Meter – Reading Time & Progress Bar to be wonderful.

Worth The Read

Worth The Read

Worth The Read is a really great WordPress reading time plugin that offers a progress bar and a text display. Control of the progress bar is completely up to you. Set the color and placement so that it fits the best into your WordPress theme’s style and look. This progress bar is unique in that it only shows itself while your reader is scrolling. Once they stop moving the screen it dissolves into the background only to appear again when scrolling resumes. The text output is also fully customizable. You can dictate where it displays and what types of content it is shown on as well.

Plugin Details

This plugin was first published by its developer in August of 2016. It is currently on version 1.12 and last underwent a change on May 26th, 2022. The most recent version functions on WordPress 6.0.3. This plugin is now operating on over 7,000 WordPress sites. It has had over 79,870 downloads. There have been 3 support requests with a 67% response rate. Worth The Read has ok support from its creator. Reviews for this plugin are very positive. Many of the end-users who left an evaluation found Worth The Read to be excellent.

Insert Estimated Reading Time

Insert Estimated Reading Time is a WordPress plugin that does exactly what the name implies. You can use this plugin to display your content’s estimated reading time at the very beginning of your page or post. It offers support for determining how many words per minute are used to make the calculation. The ability to explicitly set the format of the display is a nice feature that we wish more of these plugins had. You can include the reading time display via a shortcode or with a simple PHP function call the developer provides simple documentation for in the plugin’s README file.

Plugin Details

This piece of software was first released by its owner in July of 2013. It is presently on version 1.2 and last saw an update on June 14th, 2019. The newest release runs on WordPress 5.2.17. This plugin is actively operating on over 1,000 WordPress websites. It has had over 7,950 downloads. There have not been many support requests from end-users. Reviews for this plugin are very positive. Many of the end-users who left a review found this plugin to be useful.

Post Read Time

Post Read Time is another basic on-the-surface WordPress reading time plugin that offers great flexibility behind the scenes. The plugin’s settings allow you to control the words per minute in the calculation, take into account images in your content, and control the display with your own custom CSS. You can have the plugin automatically insert the reading time into your posts. On the other hand, you can control the placement on your own with a shortcode provided by the developer.

Plugin Details

This piece of software was originally published by its owner in June of 2019. It is actively on version 1.2.6 and last had a revision on December 11th, 2020. The most recent release functions on WordPress 5.6.10 and requires at least PHP 5.2.4 to run on your server. This plugin is presently working on over 400 WordPress websites. It has had over 1,600 downloads. There have not been many support requests from users. Post Read Time does not have any reviews. It’s not easy to tell what the WordPress community thinks about it yet.


What’s the Best WordPress Reading Time Plugin for You?

Finally, that’s the end of our look at the best WordPress reading time plugins. You’ll have to decide which one is the best for your site but they all have positives. If you need more customization, a few are better than others, but at their core, they all offer similar features.

While you are here, you might be interested in learning about our White Label WordPress plugin. Customize the WordPress admin to make operating and navigating the WordPress admin simpler for you and your users. White Label is especially useful for those of you who run WordPress agencies or marketing firms. Keeping WordPress clear of cutter and confusion helps cut down on support requests from your clients.


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