It happens without fail: As soon as I publish an article on Medium, I notice a glaring typo, misspelling, or wonky formatting.
Can you edit articles on Medium after publishing?
Yes, you can edit articles on Medium after publishing. You can edit published Medium articles that you publish to your own profile or to a publication. To edit a published article, go to the article, click on the three dots at the top right corner of the article, and then click Edit Story.
In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about editing articles on Medium after publishing.
Can You Edit a Published Article on Medium? (Official Answer)
You can edit any article you’ve published on the platform, thanks to the fact that you retain ownership of your content.
That’s right: even after you hit publish, you’re still the primary holder of the publishing rights.
No, Medium doesn’t own your content (many people ask this question).
That means if you spot a typo after you hit the publish button, you can fix it up without having to unpublish and republish the piece. If you want to update an article with new information, you can do that too.
And if you want to change the title or subheadings of your article, you’re free to do that as well.
Your readers will appreciate your efforts to keep your articles accurate and up-to-date.
Can You Edit a Medium Article That You Published To Your Profile?
Yes, you can edit an article that you publish to your Medium profile.
You publish to your main profile anytime that you write an article and hit the “publish” button. After you publish an article, you can go back to edit any part of the article.
You could even delete the entire article if you wanted.
Can You Edit a Medium Article That You Published in a Publication?
You can also edit Medium articles that you publish to Medium publications.
When you finish an article, you have the option to submit it to a publication (basically like a magazine that exists on the Medium platform). Most publications are run by other Medium writers.
Some big publications are even run by Medium staff members.
The size or owner of the publication doesn’t matter. You can still go in and edit an article on Medium after you publish it with any publication.
How To Edit a Published Story on Medium
Editing a published story on Medium is easy.
Here are the simple steps:
- Open the published article
- Click on the three black dots (…) at the top right corner of the published article
- Click on Edit Story in the drop-down list of options
- Edit your story
- When you’re finished, click the SAVE and PUBLISH button at the top of the article
If you don’t know where to find those three “dots,” just watch the video I made below.
Pretty much the same process works on your phone or other mobile devices.
I also made this video where I show a complete walkthrough of how to edit published articles on Medium:
How Much Can You Edit a Published Article on Medium?
As a writer, it’s important to know your rights and responsibilities when it comes to editing your work.
After all, once you hit publish, your article is out there for the world to see. But how much can you really edit a published article?
The short answer is: you can edit it as much as you want.
You can edit:
- The title
- The subtitle
- Grammar mistakes
- Misspelled words
- CTAs (Calls to Action)
- Tables or charts
You can even unpublish or delete it if you want. However, you should probably only make minor edits to less than 20% of the article. Any more than 20% starts to sound like a complete rewrite.
That’s fine if you published to your own profile or publication.
But if you drastically change an article published to someone else’s publication without permission, then they might not like it. They may decide to unpublish the article and block you from writing for them ever again.
So, if you need to make major edits to a published article, it’s best to get permission first.
That way, everyone will be happy with the final product.
Should You Edit a Published Story on Medium?
Once you hit publish on a Medium story, it can be tempting to just leave it as is and move on to the next project.
After all, it’s already out there in the world, and you can’t take it back.
But just because you can’t take it back doesn’t mean you shouldn’t edit a published Medium article. In fact, there are several good reasons to do so.
First, editing a story shows that you are a professional writer who takes pride in your work.
It sends the message that you are willing to put in the extra effort to ensure that your stories are of the highest quality. Second, editing can help to avoid embarrassing mistakes or outdated information.
If you spot a mistake after your story has been published, editing is the best way to fix it.
And finally, editing can help to make your content more readable and accurate. Even if there are no glaring errors, taking the time to edit your story can make a big difference in how well it is received by readers.
However, here’s when you shouldn’t edit a published story:
- When a publication asks you no to
- When editing might hurt your revenue
- When the edit isn’t important
5 Things You Must Change When You Edit Your Medium Articles
Here are the most important things to change when editing your published Medium articles:
- Cover Image
The cover image is the first thing readers see. It sets the tone and grabs attention.
A compelling, high-quality image can make a significant difference in engagement rates. When editing, ensure your cover image aligns with the article’s theme.
Avoid generic stock photos.
Instead, opt for unique visuals that resonate with your content. With AI tools and Canva, you can easily custom-make your images.
Even if your original choice was good, consider updating it periodically to keep your content fresh.
Your title is crucial.
It’s the gateway to your content. A powerful and catchy title can attract more readers, while a weak one can deter them.
When editing, ensure your title is clear, concise, and intriguing.
Avoid clickbait but aim to pique curiosity. Remember, Medium’s audience values authenticity.
A title that accurately represents your content while also being catchy is the sweet spot you should aim for.
The introduction sets the stage.
It should captivate readers, making them want to read more. Revisit your introduction during the editing process.
Does it engage your audience from the get-go?
Does it provide a clear premise for what’s to come? If not, rework it.
Your introduction should be compelling, offering readers a clear reason to continue. Additionally, ensure it aligns with the article’s body, promising what you’ll deliver.
Tags on Medium help categorize your content, making it discoverable to a broader audience.
While writing, you might have a clear idea of your article’s theme, but upon review, you might find other relevant tags.
Ensure you use all available tag slots, but choose wisely.
Your tags should be relevant to your content and popular within the Medium community to increase visibility.
A well-formatted article enhances readability.
On Medium, where readers often skim, breaking up content is crucial.
Use subheadings to segment your ideas. Incorporate white space to give readers a visual break.
Utilize quotes for emphasis and lists for clarity.
Additionally, ensure your paragraphs aren’t too lengthy. Remember, online readers have a short attention span.
Making your article scannable with varied formatting can retain their interest longer.
3 Things To Never Do When Editing a Published Article
Just as importantly, don’t do these three things:
- Alter the Core Message
- Delete Comments or Feedback
- Forget to Notify Your Audience of Major Changes
Alter the Core Message
Once an article is published and has garnered views, altering its core message can be detrimental.
Readers who return to the piece expect consistency.
Drastically changing the main idea or stance can erode trust and credibility.
While it’s acceptable to update facts or clarify points, a complete shift in the article’s essence can confuse and alienate your audience.
If a significant change is necessary, consider writing a new article and referencing the original, explaining your evolved perspective.
Delete Comments or Feedback
Engagement in the form of comments, feedback, or even criticisms, adds value to your content.
Deleting them, unless they violate community guidelines or are blatantly offensive, is often seen as a red flag.
It can appear as if you’re silencing dissent or avoiding accountability.
Embrace feedback, both positive and negative.
Responding constructively to comments can foster a sense of community and show that you value diverse opinions.
Forget to Notify Your Audience of Major Changes
If you’ve made significant edits to a published article – whether it’s updating statistics, correcting errors, or adding new sections – it’s essential to notify your readers.
A simple note at the beginning or end of the article can suffice.
This transparency ensures that readers are aware of the changes and understand the reasons behind them.
It’s a gesture of respect, acknowledging that your audience deserves to be informed about content they’ve previously engaged with.
Final Thoughts: Can You Edit Articles on Medium After Publishing?
I regularly edit articles after I publish them on Medium.
Usually, it’s just to fix a random misspelled word (or wrong word), but I do it almost every time I publish. I’ve never had a single issue with it.
If you want to learn more about Medium, check out the articles I’ve hand-selected below.