I found this code, which apparently gets the category ID from the category slug:

  $category = get_category_by_slug('category-name'); 
  $id = $category->term_id;

But when I try to implement it into the following code, it doesn't work:

//list terms in a custom taxonomy using wp_list_categories 

$category = get_category_by_slug( 'military' );

$args = array(
  'taxonomy'     => 'product_cat',
  'orderby'      => 'name',
  'show_count'   => 0,
  'pad_counts'   => 0,
  'hierarchical' => 1,
  'title_li'     => '',
  'depth'        => 2,
  'child_of'     => $category->term_id


<ul class="test">
<?php wp_list_categories( $args ); ?>

I'm attempting to show only the child categories of a specific parent category. If I just type the category ID for "child_of" then it works perfectly. But using the above code, it continues to show all categories. Unfortunately I need to do it via slug, not via ID.

Any ideas?

1 Answer 1


You can't use get_category_by_slug() with a custom taxonomy. You need to use get_term_by().

$category = get_term_by( 'slug', 'military', 'product_cat' );
  • Ah, I didn't realize that. Thank you! However, I tried replacing the line $category = get_category_by_slug... to match what you wrote above, and it still did not work. Do I need to change the "child_of" line as well?
    – LBF
    Apr 11, 2013 at 20:24
  • Can you dump the $category object to make sure it exists. var_dump( $category ); After the call to get_category_by_slug().
    – Chris_O
    Apr 11, 2013 at 20:28
  • I did the dump, and it gave me this: object(stdClass)#771 (10) { ["term_id"]=> string(3) "144" ["name"]=> string(31) "Military Bands" ["slug"]=> string(11) "military" ["term_group"]=> string(1) "0" ["avhec_term_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["term_taxonomy_id"]=> string(3) "144" ["taxonomy"]=> string(11) "product_cat" ["description"]=> string(238) "Watch Straps" ["parent"]=> string(1) "0" ["count"]=> string(3) "163" }
    – LBF
    Apr 11, 2013 at 22:19
  • Ah! I had spelled category wrong in my code when I typed in your new line. Argh. It's always the stupid mistakes. Thank you -- this worked!
    – LBF
    Apr 11, 2013 at 22:30
  • See for example without shouting capitals: get_category_by_slug how to get the ID.
    – Charles
    Jun 2, 2016 at 14:50

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