Need to Know Everything About WordPress REST API Basics

Do you want to study about WordPress REST API? Are you looking for a simple yet effective guide? If yes, then you are on the right webpage. In this, we will talk about each aspect in brief so you can better understand the whole concept and its importance plus benefits. 

WordPress REST API is the latest technology or a process to change WordPress. In other words, the motive of introducing REST API is to make the enormous change to the future of WordPress in terms of Codebase and uses.

Want to try this feature? If you haven’t tried this yet so it will bring excitement in you to try this. Let us find out what exactly it is.

What is WordPress REST API?

WordPress REST API is a user interface used by web developers to entry WordPress from free-standing the WordPress installation. This can be used to create impressive WordPress websites as well as applications by accessing JavaScript.

Now maybe you are wondering, what is the meaning of REST and API?

WordPress REST API

Representational state transfer (REST) is used to provide a standard web system to interface with each other. It is an important medium that sends signals to another one for making the interaction between two systems. Without this, you wouldn’t able to send signals and understands each other.

Therefore, while using this application you must check the following conditions. If these are confirmed you have the best REST system.

Uniform URL- just like GET, the URL between two systems must be uniform, easy to access, and consistent. 

Server- ensure the client-server applications and server applications are separate from each other, so they can make connections independently. For example, the server-side (WordPress) changes and Serve side application (app) must be able to access with a simple method. 

Stateless- the server doesn’t change state when it is on API and also it does not store any information or request that have been made out. 

Cacheable- For better speed and web standard it is must to have cacheable resources of all. This can be done on Client-side.

Layered system- this will allow your data to store in multiple layers if it is required. 

All these are important points which you should check and these are related to web pages plus applications to interface with API.

An application programming interface (API)

API is a protocol that sets the communication between ac client and a server that simplifies the client-side software. If you haven’t used this yet, then you may find this option cool. API creates a code which further used to connect one interface with another.

If you are using Google Maps to the WordPress site, use Google Map API that allows a WordPress site to interface with Google Maps.

API does not need to work in separation like REST. Because WordPress already has multiple API’s, Plugins, codes, and more. This can be used with the blend of theme and plugin that interact with WordPress and things happen.

The Purpose of API and REST for WordPress

The combination of API and REST creates WordPress REST API, includes the set of code design that used to make possible for another system to interface with WordPress. It is built in a way to ensure that will understand both terms with each other.

This also means a third-party website or app can access your database, fetching or adding data. Well, it is good in its way but there are few implications that users need to check.

What Does WordPress Rest API Means?

The concept of WordPress REST API was introduced to reshape and adding the new way to apps and websites development. This opens a wide range of future for WordPress as well as for users to see something new.

History of WordPress REST API

wordpress rest API
WordPress REST API was first presented in December 2016 as a 4.7 version. It was just like a plugin in WordPress.

The motive of designing this application is to develop a range of applications on WordPress and transform WordPress into a Content management system to an application.

Well, this feature was mostly used by Wordpress organization whose JavaScript uses REST API. It also has been used by the Gutenberg editing Interface which became the crucial part of 2019.

In other words, WordPress REST API extends the variety of applications that WordPress used for. This unique application can be run on a complex website to single-page applications. If you have used Google Docs, then you know what I am saying.

With these, the content will be refreshed easily rather than taking time to reload the page. It uses JavaScript instead of PHP. This can help the user to integrate with various elements without sending multiple requests to the server.

What Are the Implications for Developers & WordPress Users?

If you are ready to start working with WordPress REST API, then you must aware of the following implications for users and developers both.

Implications for users

  • Give changes to the interface along with the Gutenberg editor.
  • Give changes to the WordPress mobile app.
  • The self-hosted admin will look like the WordPress screen.

Implications for developers

  • It can create a single page application, but it will look very different from WordPress.
  • This can interact with other technologies and systems.
  • This can develop with WordPress, who knows JavaScript.
  • If you are a PHP developer, you should advance your skills by learning JavaScript.
  • Need to do some specific changes, it builds Gutenberg blocks rather than Meta boxes in the editing post window.

The conclusion is WordPress REST API more suitable for who knows JavaScript well. If you want to use this, it means you have to learn Java instead of PHP.

How You Can Access Wordpress REST API?

It is an important question asked by millions of users. So, if you need to access REST-API first you will need to access WordPress site with a command line (WP-CLI). You can use it either accessing this code with your admin portal or directly by web adding code to the site.

If you want to go in detail, then let us get started!

Access WP-REST via WP-CLI

By using the interface command line, you will access Wordpress for work. You are doing this so for WordPress REST API use. If you are Mac or Linux user then access CLI. If you need to access the remote site, you have to use SSH on the server, in case you are refused to use this, then do a google for more options.

If your site is local then you need to add simply a precise directory structure from the command line. Make sure you are trying it on the local site instead of the live site. If you are not understanding then look at the given line to access the site;
See, you can add other elements in your code to access specific data. These are known as end-points.


When you will access your site with the above elements, you will need to undergo the authenticating process. Well, some elements do not require such a process, but other’s needs.

Remember you are not logged in site admin so here you will go differently. If you are accessing your site via WP-CLI, install the authentication plugin. If you are a developer then you will need to install the Basic Auth plugin to work. (It is for local site)

But if you are working with the live site then you have to choose the fantastic method for verification like JWT authentication. This uses JSON Web token that is secure to work with.

After that, Use the command line to access data and verification. For example:
Suppose a user wants to test curl, so it will work as:

Curl- X GET—User Username: password-I

The draft is not public information. If you need to access, you have to complete the verification process. But as for testing, if you need to look for the draft that would be public so add the given code.

Curl-X GET

With this, you will able to fetch all the details in this link (Those are public).
An Introduction of WordPress REST API Commands

Once you know about how to verify your site, you can move to the next stage i.e learning about the basic commands of Wp-CLI. For interaction between one or more systems then you have to use multiple commands such as:

  • GET- this can be used to retrieve data or post.
  • POST- this can be used to add a resource to the server.
  • PUT- this can be used to update a resource, already on the server.
  • DELETE- used to delete a resource from the server. 

Special note- use all commands carefully. Your one wrong step can offer disaster results.

If we talk about most used command then I would say GET. It is used to retrieve the data. To use this, you have to enter:


If you have checked, so I haven’t use the URL of the site because you have already access that. So the thing is first access your first step and considers GET.

Now, suppose you want to fetch the latest post. To do this enter:

GET/wp/v2/posts/? Per_page=1

You can use various numbers to fetch the data. See the WordPress REST API Handbook for more.


For adding new data or posts, you can use the POST command. See example:

With this, you can create a new draft. Now, add the PUT command to update the new post or edit. You can also add various posts with POST commands like attachments and more.

Or if you would like to add a new page then it can be:
POST/ wp/v2/posts/pages


This command helps you to edit the existing file. Suppose you want to edit a few posts or update them with new info. To make it easy, look at the given example.

With this, you will get all the information on the current post. You can even change the status by using ID like:

With this, you will able to access and edit the file. You can make suitable changes. After that, change status by the following command.

To add content in the post, just do:
“Content”= “content here”


This command can help you to delete posts that you want to delete. It can delete resources. It first goes to trash, like a backup. Or if you want to delete permanently, then delete it from the trash file too.

To use this:

To remove it from the trash as well then add

This will delete the files permanently from the trash area. 
When to avoid WordPress REST API?

WordPress REST API is not just a perfect tool for everyone. If you want to make your WordPress running well, the following are the reasons to avoid it.


If your audience is all about PHP, then dropping an idea to use the REST API is perfect. Sometimes users don’t use application those are run on JavaScript. 
The Wordpress site is about PHP that generates output in HTML. Today JavaScript users are rare, so using REST is just a wastage of time. 

In case your user wants to turn into Java, then it may cause some problems like accessibility or security.


Most of sites and apps are not accessible as PHP over java. It is because JavaScript uses when we need to deliver dynamic content that will not perform easily for users on their mobiles. This may cause an issue like less screen resolution, etc.
With REST API you can overcome these issues, but it first advisable to check for what purpose you are using this.

How to disable WordPress REST API

If you just want to stop this all, then do the following steps:
Install Disable WP REST API plugin

This significantly logged you out from this and you will get back to your site.
You can even add coded into themes or create your plugin. Just add these two lines with plugin under HTML. 

Add_filter (‘json_enabled’,’_return_false’);
Add_filter (‘json_jsonp_enabled’,’_return_false’);
This will disable REST API soon and also you will get out from all its effects.

Applications Using REST API

  • The block editor
  • Event Espresso
  • UsTwo
  • USA Today

About Sonnal S Sinha

Sonnal S SinhaSonnal S Sinha is a passionate writer as well as WordPress and WooCommerce rockstar who loves to share insights on various topics through his engaging blog posts. He run successful website design and digital marketing company. With 15+ years of experience in WordPress themes development, he strives to inform and inspire readers with his thought-provoking content. He helps thousands small and medium businesses and startups create a unique online presence. Follow Sonnal S Sinha for your regular dose of knowledge and inspiration.