Ever wanted to have category called ending soon or starting today which are automatically populated based on auction, lottery, deal end / start date? One client did it with a free plugin so he does not need to use widgets or shortcodes for that purpose. Plugin called Post Expirator does the trick – among other things it can change (custom) product category on selected date.
Along with main features to modify, remove or completely delete content when the expiry date arrives plugin allows also some useful actions with posts / pages / products:
- Change the status to “Draft”
- Delete the post
- Send the post to the Trash
- Change the status to “Private”
- Enable the “Stick to the top of the blog” option
- Disable the “Stick to the top of the blog” option
- Remove all existing categories, and add new categories
- Keep all existing categories, and add new categories
- Keep all existing categories, except for those specified in this change
For our example we will use “Remove all existing categories, and add new categories” action. First define product categories – something like on screenshot below (and ofcourse categorize auctions with Auctions product category):
You can use “do not mix” settings for auctions, lotteries and group buy / deals. Now in Settings -> Post Expirator we need to enable it for product post type (and disable it on for example posts and pages if you don’t need it there).
Post Expirator plugin comes with handy bulk edit option and can be bulk set but problem is that expiration category must be set for each auction manually, one by one. This can be done during auction post publishing when you enter all auction details so we don’t see this as huge problem.
After time set in above screenshot auction is categoriezed under Auctions -> Ending Soon category.
Benefits of this approach is that when you custom style product archive page same style will be applied to all products even custom ones like auctions, lotteries and group buy / deals.
Customizing loop for widgets and shortcodes is not that easy while customizing product categories is more easy and can be done for example with Elementor. You can also completely unpublish finished auctions, lotteries, group buy / deals, or move them to their special product category called for example Past Competitions.
Post Expirator plugin is well maintained, has solid user base (more than 100k installations) and top rating.