Using a Custom Taxonomy to Add a Location Drop Down

Using a Custom Taxonomy to Add a Location Drop Down

Recently in the support forums, one of our members wanted to add US states to his Directory listings and make his listings searchable by state.

While there are plugins that can do this, we chose a more interesting path that takes advantage of our plugins.

In today’s Weekend WordPress Project I’m going to show you how to use a custom taxonomy to add a location drop down to your site.

Plugins You Will Need for This Project

These are the plugins you’ll need for this project:

1. Create New Taxonomy for Your States/Locations

In CustomPress, navigate to the Taxonomies tab, and select Add New.

Add taxonomy.

Assign your taxonomy’s system name, which, like a slug, should be all lowercase letters. I’m going to call my “state.”

Taxonomy name

Assign your taxonomy to the relevant post types. For my example here, I added the “states” taxonomy to both Directory Listing and Classified custom post types.

Post type

Change any of the labels referring to your taxonomy in the box called “Labels.”


Set the following settings to “true” if they aren’t already:

  • Show Admin Column
  • Public
  • Show UI
  • Show in Nav Menus
  • Hierarchical

And don’t forget to hit “Save.”

2. Add Your States or Locations

Next, navigate to Listings (or whichever plugin you’re using) > States (or your label) and add each location, just like adding a list of categories for standard posts.

Check to make sure everything is working as planned by going to Listings > Add New, and ensure you’ve got a shiny new location dropdown on the edit post screen.

Add new listing.

If everything looks cherry, move on to the next step.

3. Enable Search by State/Location

The screenshots below are using Advanced Custom Post Search, your search plugin may look a bit different behind the scenes.

First, select the post type you’d like the search to apply to. In this case, I chose the Directory custom post type.

Next, select which taxonomies you would like the search to use. Here, I selected listing category and state.

Customize the other settings to your liking, and hit “Save.”

Listing search.

4. Add to Your Site

Advanced Custom Search comes with both a handy widget and a shortcode, which allow you to place the search tool wherever you’d like. I used Custom Sidebars to create a sidebar for my Listings pages with a list of the most recent Listings underneath the Advanced Custom Search widget.

Listing search.

That’s it! Now if you’d like to make your Listings or Classified (or more!) custom posts available and searchable by state, you’ve got all the tools you need.

What kinds of cool stuff have you done with CustomPress and custom post types? Let us know in the comments below.