Content Moderation in Drupal: Enhance Site Management

Drupal is a content management system, so you may find yourself constantly juggling content creation, review, and publishing. Then, you must understand the importance of a smooth editorial workflow. This is where content moderation in Drupal comes in. It offers a powerful tool to ensure high-quality content reaches your audience.

The Drupal development services use the content moderation strategy to maintain a trustworthy online presence. In this blog, I’ll stress the importance, types, challenges, and much more with respect to Content moderation in Drupal. And you’ll learn the best practices available to enhance your moderation workflow.

What is Content Moderation in Drupal?

Content moderation is a Drupal module that reviews and approves content before it’s published on a website. It ensures the content is accurate, meets quality standards, and follows the website’s guidelines. That is essential for websites with multiple contributors or those dealing with sensitive information.

In Drupal websites, the Content Moderation module works alongside the Workflows module. So you can create customized editorial workflows in multiple stages. Let’s see how.

  • Multi-stage Workflows: Content goes through a predefined series of stages, including draft, review, and approval. Content creators can draft content and then progress through these stages. Editors or reviewers manage it before publication.
  • Revision Tracking: Every edit made to the content creates a revision. So, the editors can track changes, compare versions, and revert to previous versions if necessary.
  • Granular Permissions: User roles can be assigned for specific permissions for each stage in the workflow. For instance, an “Author” role might be able to create content and submit it for review. An “Editor” role might have permission to review and approve content for publishing.

Using this system provides a structured and collaborative environment for managing content. It’s particularly beneficial for websites with editorial teams. It could also be helpful for those requiring strict control over the publishing process and the quality of the information shared.

Benefits of Content Moderation in Drupal

Content moderation is crucial to ensure high-quality content reaches Drupal websites. Without a review process, inaccurate or misleading information could be published, damaging your website’s reputation and trust.

  • Enhanced Quality Control: A review process allows editors to ensure the content meets your website’s quality standards. They can check for grammar, accuracy, formatting, and adherence to your style guide before publication. It helps maintain a professional and trustworthy online presence.
  • Reduced Errors and Misinformation: Content moderation helps prevent the spread of misinformation by catching factual inaccuracies before it goes live. That is especially important for websites dealing with sensitive topics or relying on factual accuracy.
  • Streamlined Workflow: It creates a structured workflow for content creation. So, you can define clear stages, such as draft, review, and approval, ensuring a smooth and efficient editorial process. This eliminates confusion and keeps concurrency, fostering a productive content-creation environment.
  • Improved Collaboration: You can assign specific roles for reviewers and approvers. This facilitates collaboration within teams. Subject matter experts can weigh in on content accuracy and adherence to editorial guidelines. This can also help you identify areas for improvement and ensure consistency across the website’s content.
  • Improved User Experience: Content moderation ultimately contributes to a better user experience by ensuring high-quality and accurate content. Users are more likely to trust and engage with your website if they know the information they consume is reliable.
  • Scalability: Content moderation is particularly beneficial for websites with a large number of contributors or with a high volume of content. It can manage the workflow efficiently and ensures quality control even with growing content.

These are just a few benefits that justify the inclusion of content moderation by Drupal experts. This module makes content moderation super easy in Drupal websites as it structures the whole process and makes it more scalable.

Now, let’s check the types of moderation in Drupal.

What are the Different Types of Content Moderation in Drupal Websites?

Content Moderation in Drupal has four types: Draft, Review, Published, and Archived Moderation, each serving a specific purpose. It offers a flexible framework to create custom workflows that suit your needs. Here are standard moderation stages you can incorporate into these workflows:

  • Draft Moderation: This type of moderation is used for content that is still being created or edited. Content in the draft state is not visible to the public and requires review before publication.
  • Needs Review Moderation: Content in this state has been submitted for review but has not yet been approved for publication. A content moderator or editor typically reviews it before being published.
  • Published Moderation: Content in the published state is live on the website and visible to the public. However, it may still be subject to further moderation, such as editing or archiving.
  • Archived Moderation: Archived content is no longer live on the website but is retained for reference. Archived content is not visible to the public.

These different types of content moderation states can be customized and expanded to fit the specific needs of your website. They allow administrators to define clear workflows for content creation, review, and publication, ensuring that only high-quality content is published on the site.

Want a structured content workflow on your Drupal website?

How Do You Set Up Content Moderation in Drupal?

Content moderation is the answer to ensure better workflow, maintain editorial control, or manage multiple contributors. Let’s see how you can set up a basic content moderation workflow to streamline your publishing process with high-quality content for your audience.

Step 1: Enable the Content moderation module.

  • Go to Extend in your Drupal dashboard.
  • Locate the Content moderation module and click Install.

Step 2: Configure Content moderation settings.

  • Go to Configuration > Content authoring > Content moderation (admin/config/content/moderation)
  • Configure workflow settings, such as the default moderation states that control content for moderation.

Step 3: Create Content moderation workflows.

  • Go to Configuration > Workflow > Workflows (admin/config/workflow/workflows).
  • Here, you’ll see the existing workflows, including an editorial workflow.
  • Click Add workflow to create a new workflow with custom stages.
  • Give your workflow a descriptive name and define the stages (e.g., Draft, Needs Review, In Review, Approved, Published).
  • You can also set up transitions between stages, defining how content moves between them (e.g., what actions trigger a transition).

Step 4: Apply the Workflow to Content Types.

  • Go to Structure > Content Types (admin/structure/types).
  • Edit the content type(s) where you want to enable content moderation.
  • Under General settings, locate the Workflow option.
  • Select the workflow you want to apply (e.g., the newly created one or the default Editorial workflow).
  • Click Save to enable content moderation for that content type.

Step 5: Set user permissions.

  • Go to People > Permissions (admin/people/permissions).
  • Locate the Content moderation section within the permission settings.
  • Here, you can assign permissions for each user role and workflow stage.
  • For example, you can grant Author users permission to create and submit content for review, while Editors can review and publish content.
  • Configure permissions according to your desired workflow and user roles.

Step 6: Test the moderation workflow.

  • Create some test content.
  • Verify that it moves from Draft to Published after being reviewed.

By following these steps, you can set up content moderation in Drupal. However, if you need more customization, you can hire Drupal developers who can help you meet the specific needs of your website.

Note: These are general steps, and specific configurations might vary slightly depending on your Drupal version. It’s recommended that you consult with the professionals or get detailed instructions from the official Content moderation documentation.

Common Challenges with Drupal Content Moderation

Although Drupal offers a robust system, there are still many challenges to finding solutions for streamlining content moderation.

The challenges and solutions are as mentioned below:

Complexity of Workflows

Challenge: Drupal’s core moderation capabilities are basic. Creating complex workflows with multiple states, transitions, and conditional logic can be cumbersome.

Solution: Use contributed modules like “Content Moderation” or “Workflow” that offer more advanced features like:

  • Defining multiple content states (draft, review, published, archived)
  • Setting up conditional transitions based on user roles, content type, or specific criteria.
  • Implementing parallel workflows for different content types or user groups.

User Training and Adoption

Challenge: New users might find the moderation interface confusing, leading to errors or delays.

Solution: Here’s how you can take care of this challenge:

  • Provide clear documentation and training materials explaining the moderation process.
  • Utilize intuitive user interfaces within the chosen moderation module.
  • Offer role-specific permissions and access levels to simplify the experience for different user types.

Balancing Moderation with User Experience

Challenge: Overly strict moderation can discourage user contributions and slow down content creation.

Solution: Here’s how you can effectively handle this challenge:

  • Implement a tiered moderation system with clear expectations for each content state.
  • Allow users to submit content for review while still making it accessible to editors.
  • Provide clear feedback mechanisms for authors during the moderation process.

Managing Multiple Workflows

Challenge: Handling multiple content types and user groups with different moderation requirements can become complex.

Solution: Here’s what will help you prevent and handle this challenge.

  • Leverage the flexibility of contributed modules to configure separate workflows for different content types.
  • Utilize user roles and permissions to assign specific moderation tasks to designated users or groups.
  • Consider workflow automation tools to streamline repetitive tasks within the moderation process.

Integration with Other Modules

Challenge: Ensuring compatibility between the moderation module and other custom modules or functionalities can lead to conflicts.

Solution: Here’s what will help you fix this issue:

  • Choose well-maintained and actively supported moderation modules with a proven track record of compatibility.
  • Test thoroughly after installing any new modules that might interact with the moderation system.
  • Seek our Drupal consulting services for assistance with complex integration issues.

Performance Impact

Challenge: Complex moderation workflows with numerous states and transitions can potentially impact site performance.

Solution: Here’s what you can do to prevent and fix this issue.

  • Optimize the configuration of your moderation workflows to minimize unnecessary steps or conditions.
  • Utilize caching mechanisms within the chosen moderation module to improve page load times.
  • Consider server optimization strategies to handle the increased load if necessary.

Note that you may come across some different challenges that are not mentioned in the above list. And the solutions provided can also differ according to your Drupal version.

In that case, you can consult with dedicated Drupal developers to handle the challenges. Now, let’s learn how to avoid these issues with the best Content moderation practices.

Best Practices for Content Moderation in Drupal

Once you have implemented content moderation, it’s important to optimize this process truly. The guide below will explore step-by-step practices for content moderation in Drupal, empowering your users to publish exceptional content that keeps the audience engaged.

Let’s begin from the start:

  • Start Simple: Begin with a basic workflow that caters to your core content types. Overly complex workflows can be cumbersome to manage.
  • Clearly Defined Stages: Use clear and concise labels for each stage in your workflow (e.g., Draft, Needs Review, Approved, Published). This avoids confusion for users.
  • Focus on Efficiency: Streamline your workflow to avoid unnecessary stages that might slow down the content publication. 
  • Control Privilege: Assign permissions based on the principle of least privilege. Users should only have the access level required for their specific role in the moderation process.
  • Role Clarity: Clearly define the responsibilities and permissions associated with each user role (e.g., Author, Editor, Administrator).
  • Review Permissions: Carefully manage review permissions to ensure qualified users review content relevant to their expertise.
  • Version Control: Consider permitting reviewers to revert to previous versions if necessary.
  • Communication Channels: Establish clear channels for editors and reviewers to discuss content and collaborate effectively.
  • Schedule Content Publication: Integrate scheduling functionalities with your workflow to automatically publish content at a predefined time after approval.
  • User Feedback: Ask content creators and editors for constant feedback. They can help you identify any challenges or areas for improvement in the moderation process.
  • Review and Reporting: Regularly review and update your workflows as your website’s content and user base evolve. Utilize reporting tools to track moderation activity, identify trends, and measure the effectiveness of your workflows.
  • Clear Documentation: Follow the official documentation outlining the content moderation process, user roles, and expectations.

By following these best practices, you can leverage Drupal’s content moderation module to ease the publishing process. It will help you ensure a better experience for the author, editor, reviewer, and publisher.

FAQs About Content Moderation in Drupal

How can I address the challenges of content moderation in Drupal?
Here are some tips to overcome these challenges:
  • Plan and communicate workflows.
  • Train reviewers on editorial guidelines and review criteria.
  • Consider integrating automation tools for streamlining the process.
  • Create a balance between review and timely publishing.
Can I edit a workflow after it's been created?
Absolutely! Drupal allows you to modify existing workflows by revisiting the moderation settings for your chosen content type. You can adjust stages, roles, and permissions as per your needs.
Can content moderation be automated in Drupal?
Yes, Drupal offers various automation options for content moderation, such as:
  • Sending notifications
  • Automatically archiving content
  • Triggering specific actions based on content attributes


Drupal content moderation helps you curate high-quality content and streamline your editorial workflow. By leveraging its flexibility, you can establish clear review processes and ensure content meets your specific standards.

Content moderation can create customized workflows and integrate automation tools to ensure a seamless moderation experience.

With a well-defined content moderation strategy, your Drupal website can become a reliable source of exceptional content. So consult with our Drupal experts and have it set up on your website today!

Need help with your Drupal website?

Nikita Shah is a technical content writer at WPWeb Infotech known for simplifying complex topics. With expertise in various technical fields, she crafts engaging articles that makes technology easy to understand. Her clear and concise writing style ensures that readers gain valuable insights while enjoying the content.

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