I'm trying to come up with a query to sort by multiple orderby values. Here's what I have so far:

    $query=new WP_Query(array(
            'post_status'=>array('publish', 'pending', 'future'),

I'm trying to query a custom post type, and within that post type, query a meta value.

Then, I'd like to first sort by menu_order ascending, then by a custom meta value wcu_lastname ascending. However, the orderby value didn't seem to be able to take an array.

How can I order the query using multiple orderby values?

  • 3
    If I'm not wrong, simply add them space separated.
    – kaiser
    Sep 20, 2012 at 16:05

3 Answers 3


@Musa how can we put multiple order value for the fields? I was wondering the same question and I found this :

In 4.0, you can now pass an array to WP_Query as the value for orderby.

The syntax looks like:

$q = new WP_Query( array( 
    'orderby' => array( 
       'title'      => 'DESC', 
       'menu_order' => 'ASC' 

Have a look here for more details : https://make.wordpress.org/core/2014/08/29/a-more-powerful-order-by-in-wordpress-4-0/

$query=new WP_Query(array(
                'post_status'=>array('publish', 'pending', 'future'),
                                array('key'=>'wcu_dept','value'=>$dept_id, 'compare'=>'='),
                'orderby'=>'menu_order wcu_firstname',

By using what @kaiser suggested and the meta_query option, I was able to get the query I was looking for.

  • 1
    how can we put multiple order value for the fields? For ex: ASC for menu_order, DESC for date
    – Musa
    Mar 20, 2014 at 11:44
    $args = [
        's'              => $keyword,
        'post_type'      => ['page'],
        'paged'          => $paged,
        'posts_per_page' => PAGE_LIMIT,
        'tax_query' => [
                  'taxonomy'         => TAX_RESOURCE_PAGE,
                  'field'            => 'slug',
                  'terms'            => $c_term_slug
        'post_status'    => 'publish',
        'meta_key'       => 'order',
        'meta_type'      => 'NUMERIC',
        'orderby'        => [
             'meta_value_num' => 'ASC',
             'ID' => 'DESC',
    $wp_query = new WP_Query( $args );

my code is a example.

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