How To Use And Configure WordPress Widgets – Part 4

Learn how to add and configure various useful WordPress widgets on your sidebar and how to create custom sidebar widgets …

Get Thrive Leads for WordPress

How To Add And Configure Widgets In WordPressIn Part One of this tutorial series, we explained how to use widgets in WordPress and in Part 2, you learned how to configure a text widget.

In Part Three, we began configuring various frequently-used widgets.

In this final installment, we are going to complete this tutorial series by configuring a few more commonly-used widgets.

Important

In WordPress v. 4.8, WordPress introduced new media widgets covering images, audio, and video, and an updated text widget that supports visual editing

WordPress 4.8 - WordPress Widget Updates

(WordPress 4.8 introduced new widget updates)

These widgets let you add content from your media library and media stored in other servers or storage locations (e.g. Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon S3, etc.).

Let’s go through how to configure and use each of these widgets:

Rich Text Widget

From version 4.8 onward, WordPress has added native rich-text editing capabilities to text widgets …

Rich Text Widget

(Rich Text Widget)

This lets you format text, create lists, add emphasis, and insert links into your sidebar text quickly and easily …

(Format text easily with the new text widget)

To learn more about using text widgets in WordPress, see the tutorial below:

WordPress Image Widget

The WordPress Image Widget lets you add an image to your sidebar from your Media Library or an external storage location.

To add an image, drag an image widget to your active widgets area …

Image Widget

(Image Widget)

Click on ‘Add Image’ …

Let's add an image!

(Let’s add an image!)

Select an image from the Image Library, check or add image details (e.g. Caption, Alt text, Description, etc.) if desired and click the ‘Add to Widget’ button …

Select an image

(Select an image)

The image will automatically load into the widget area …

Image added to widget

(Image added to widget)

Add a Title to your image if you want, or leave the ‘Title:’ field blank and click ‘Save’ …

Save your image

(Save your image)

Preview your website and you should see the image displayed where you have placed your image widget …

Image added to website using image widget

(Image added to website using WordPress image widget)

If you want to link your image to an URL, go back to your image widget and click on ‘Edit Image’ …

Image Widget - Edit Image

(Image Widget – Edit Image)

Add a URL in the ‘Image Details’ > ‘Display Settings’ > ‘Link To’ screen and click the ‘Update’ button …

Link your image to an URL

(Link your image to an URL)

To add an image stored in an external server or remote location, locate and copy the URL of the image to your clipboard …

Copy image URL to your clipboard

(Copy image URL to your clipboard)

Go back to your image widget and click on ‘Replace Image’ …

Image Widget - Replace image

(Image Widget – Replace image)

The Media Library browser opens. Click on ‘Insert from URL’ and paste in the image URL copied to your clipboard, then click on ‘Add to Widget’  …

Add image URL

(Add image URL)

If you have previously added an image title in your widget, remember to replace it if required, then click ‘Save’ …

Save your new image

(Save your new image)

The new image will now display on your sidebar …

New image added using WordPress image widget

(New image added using WordPress image widget)

To learn more about adding images to WordPress, see this tutorial:

WordPress Video Widget

The WordPress Video Widget lets you add audio files to your sidebar from your Media Library, YouTube, Vimeo, or an external storage location.

To add a video to the sidebar, drag a Video widget to your active widgets area …

Drag a Video widget to your sidebar

(Drag a Video widget to your sidebar)

Click the ‘Add Video’ button …

Video widget - Add Video

(Video widget – Add Video)

Select a video from your media library or add a video URL and click the ‘Add to Widget’ button …

Add a video URL

(Add a video URL)

Add a title to the widget if desired and click ‘Save’ …

WordPress Video Widget - Save Button

(WordPress Video Widget – Save Button)

Your video will display on your site where the video widget has been added …

Video added using WordPress video widget

(Video added using WordPress video widget)

To learn more about adding video to WordPress, see this tutorial:

WordPress Audio Widget

The WordPress Audio Widget lets you add audio files like podcasts, music or a personal greeting to your sidebar from your media library or an external storage location.

To add an audio file to your sidebar, drag an audio widget to your active widgets area …

Add an audio widget to your sidebar

(Add an audio widget to your sidebar)

Click the ‘Add Audio’ button…

WordPress Audio Widget - Add Audio button

(WordPress Audio Widget – Add Audio button)

Select an audio file from your media library or insert the URL of an audio file stored in an external location …

Select your audio file

(Select your audio file)

Add a title to your widget if desired and click the ‘Save’ button …

Save the audio file on your audio widget

(Save the audio file on your audio widget)

Your site will now display an audio file to visitors where you have placed the audio widget …

Audio file added to your site using the WordPress Audio Widget

(Audio file added to your site using the WordPress Audio Widget)

To learn more about adding audios to WordPress, see this tutorial:

Add An RSS Widget To Your WordPress Blog Sidebar

Now, let’s add a widget to the sidebar menu that displays news updates from An RSS feed.

To add the widget, select an RSS widget in the Available Widgets section and drag it to your active area …

WordPress RSS Widget

(WordPress RSS Widget)

Enter the following information into the widget settings:

  1. RSS feed URL: Paste the RSS feed URL into this field.
  2. Feed Title: If you would like to add a title to your widget, enter it here.
  3. Items to display: Choose the number of RSS feed items you want to display in the sidebar from this drop-down menu.
  4. Display item content: Tick this box if you want to show the RSS feed content.
  5. Display item author: Tick this box to show the RSS feed item author.
  6. Display item date: Check this box if you would like to display the feed item item date.

RSS Widget settings

(WordPress RSS Widget settings)

Experiment with different widget settings to find the ideal combination for your blog.

The screenshot below shows an RSS Feed widget configured using the above settings …

WordPress RSS Widget on sidebar

(RSS Widget displayed on sidebar navigation area)

The example below shows a published RSS widget configured with other options selected …

WordPress RSS Widget settings

(WordPress RSS Widget settings)

To learn more about using RSS feeds in WordPress, see this tutorial:

Add A Tag Cloud Section To The Sidebar Navigation Area

Let’s now add A Tag Cloud widget to display a tag list on the sidebar navigation menu.

Useful Info

Tags displayed in the widget are listed in the Tags section …

WordPress Tags area

(Tags area)

To add the widget, find a Tag Cloud widget in the Available Widgets section and drag it to your sidebar …

Tag Cloud Widget

(WordPress Tag Cloud Widget)

There is really very little to set up. You can add a widget title, and choose whether to display items in the tag cloud using Tags or Categories. Click Save when finished …

WordPress Tag Cloud Widget settings

(WordPress Tag Cloud Widget settings)

Your Tag cloud will now display on your sidebar …

Tag cloud displaying post tags

(Tag Cloud widget displaying tags)

The screenshot below shows a published Tag Cloud widget configured for displaying Categories instead of Tags

Tag cloud displaying categories

(Tag cloud displaying WordPress post categories)

To learn more about using post tags in WordPress, see this tutorial:

Configure The Archives Widget In Your Blog Sidebar

To complete this tutorial series, we’ll configure the Archives Widget, which is another common WordPress widget.

As you continue adding new posts to WordPress, your older posts begin to get pushed further down the chronology ladder and become less visible to users. Your content is still there, it’s just not as visible.

The Archives Widget lets readers view less visible posts …

Archives Widget

(WordPress Archives Widget)

There’s very little to configure. You can add a widget title, and choose whether to display items in the sidebar as a dropdown menu, and display post counts . Click Save when finished …

WordPress Archives Widget settings

(Archives Widget settings)

The example below shows the Archives widget set for showing posts as a dropdown menu with post counts enabled …

Archives widget added to blog sidebar

(WordPress Archives Widget displayed on sidebar area)

Now that you know how to configure a number of sidebar widgets, let’s explore some other aspects of WordPress widgets.

Widgets – Useful Tips

Here are some useful things to know about widgets:

Add ‘Visibility’ Function To Widgets

Installing the Jetpack plugin not only adds many new widgets to your widgets area …

Jetpack Widgets

(Jetpack Widgets)

It also adds a useful ‘Visibility’ function to all WordPress widgets …

Jetpack adds 'Visibility' to all widgets

(Jetpack adds ‘Visibility’ to all widgets)

This function lets you specify whether to display or hide widgets from your sidebar based on conditions you set for a particular category, author, user. role, tag, date, or page …

Set conditions to show or hide widgets

(Set conditions to show or hide widgets)

This is a really useful function to have.

For example, you can:

  • Display a widget only on your home page or only on posts published under certain categories, tags, authors, dates, etc.
  • Configure widgets to display specific or time-sensitive announcements based on a post’s category, date, etc.
  • Configure widgets to display targeted ad banners based on a post’s category or tag.
  • Hide widgets from appearing on certain posts or pages to prevent users from being distracted (e.g. remove widgets with ads from your sales pages).
  • And more!

To learn more about using the Jetpack plugin, go here:

Override Default Sidebar Widgets

If you see widgets appearing on your site’s sidebar section that aren’t showing up in your active sidebar inside the Appearance > Widgets section, it’s because with some themes, unless you add widgets to the sidebar navigation area, the theme will display its own default set of widgets.

For example, the site below shows some widgets in the sidebar section …

Overriding Default WordPress Sidebar Widgets

If you look inside the Widgets section, however, no widgets have been added to any of the available widget areas …

Override Default Sidebar Widgets

This theme could be using default widgets.

Once you add one or more widgets to an active widget area, the other widgets will your selected widgets will be used instead.

Note: If you want no widgets to appear in your sidebar, either use a theme page template without a widgets section or just add a blank Text widget to your sidebar.

Add a blank text widget …

How To Override Default Sidebar Widgets

And the default widgets will not show in the sidebar/footer section …

Override Default WordPress Sidebar Widgets

Widget Accessibility Mode

As we have explained in an earlier example, WordPress lets you quickly and easily rearrange how content is displayed in widgetized areas of your site sidebars, footers and navigation menus with just a few clicks of your mouse button, using drag-and-drop …

Rearrange sidebar elements using widgets to improve your site's user experience

(Rearrange sidebar layout using widgets to improve your site’s user experience)

In the screenshot above, for example, you can see that we have quickly and easily redesigned the sidebar menu by switching the search and testimonial sections. This is easily done by dragging and dropping the widgets into different positions inside the sidebar widget area.

You can reorganize your sidebar layout with widgets to improve your site’s user experience.

If, however, you find that you cannot move widgets using drag & drop (e.g. using a mobile device that doesn’t support dragging-and-dropping), you can still work with widgets by enabling Accessibility Mode.

Enabling Accessibility Mode For WordPress Widgets

Enabling Accessibility Mode, via the Screen Options, lets you use Add and Edit buttons instead of dragging and dropping.

To enable Accessibility Mode, log into your administration area and go to the Widgets section …

WordPress Widgets Menu

(Widgets Menu)

Click on Screen Options on the top right hand corner of your screen …

Widgets - Screen Options

(Widgets – Screen Options)

Click on Enable accessibility mode

Turn on accessibility mode

(Switch On accessibility mode)

Once accessibility mode has been enabled, the widgets in the Available Widgets section will display an Add link, and the widgets in the Active Widgets section will display an Edit link …

How To Enable Accessibility Mode For Widgets

If you click on a Widget’s Add link in the Available Widgets section …

Enable Widget Accessibility Mode

A screen displays the selected widget with options for customizing its settings, selecting the location to add the widget, with dropdown menus for specifying the position of the widget in the widget location (e.g. position “1”, “2”, “4”, etc.) …

How To Enable Accessibility Mode For WordPress Widgets

Click Save Widget to add the widget to your Active Widgets section, or Cancel to go back to the previous screen …

How To Enable Widget Accessibility Mode

Click on an active widget’s Edit link …

Enable Accessibility Mode For Widgets

A screen displays the selected widget with options for modifying its settings.

Click Save Widget to update your settings and return to the Active Widgets section, or click the Delete button to delete the widget from the Active Widgets section …

How To Enable Accessibility Mode For Widgets

Click on Disable accessibility mode in the Screen Options section to restore the drag and drop function to your Widgets …

Turn off accessibility mode

(Switch off accessibility mode)

Create Your Own Sidebar Widgets

Most of the widgets that you will use will either be installed by default when you create a new WordPress site, or be automatically added to your Available Widgets area by plugins that you install on your site.

If you want to create a custom sidebar widget, then here is a really simple and easy way:

First, create a new Post and enter the content that you want to display on the sidebar navigation menu…

Creating Your Own Custom Sidebar Widgets

Ensure that any images you use fit the maximum width of the sidebar. Also, keep in mind that you don’t have a lot of room to add content on the sidebar navigation area, so try and keep your information concise.

Also, don’t worry about publishing your Post – all we are really after is to copy the code of the content so we can paste it into your widget.

After creating your content, switch to the Text tab …

Creating Your Own Sidebar Widgets

Select everything inside the text editor window and copy it to your clipboard…

Create Your Own Sidebar Widgets

Next, go into your Widgets Area.

Insert a new Text widget into your sidebar, paste the content from your clipboard into the content field and click Save

Creating Your Own Custom Sidebar Widgets

Your new widget is now added to the sidebar…

Creating Your Own Sidebar Widgets

(Create your own custom sidebar widgets)

Congratulations! Now you know how to use and configure the most frequently-used sidebar widgets.

Adding And Configuring WordPress Widgets In The Website

Subscribe below & receive 101+ useful WordPress tips that will help grow your business online faster ...

101+ WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies

Get 101+ Powerful WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies ... 100% FREE!

Enter your details below and we'll send you 101+ useful WordPress tips, tricks and hacks directly to your inbox:

We will never SPAM you!

***

"If you're new to WordPress, this can stand on its own as a training course and will stay with you as you progress from beginner to advanced and even guru status." - Bruce (Columbus, Ohio)

How To Use And Configure WordPress Widgets – Part 3

Learn how to add and configure a number of useful widgets on your WordPress sidebar …

How To Add Widgets To WordPressIn Part One of this step-by-step tutorial, we explained how to use WordPress widgets and in Part 2, we explained how to configure a text widget.

In this section you are going to configure other sidebar widgets.

How To Add Post Categories To The Sidebar

Now that you have set up a text widget containing a support button, let’s configure a widget to display Post Categories on the sidebar menu.

By default, the Categories widget already displays on your sidebar. All you have to do, therefore, is place this widget wherever you want your categories to display by clicking and dragging it on the sidebar widget area …

Categories Widget

(WordPress Post Categories widget)

Practical Tip

Before adding a Categories widget to your sidebar, we recommend setting up the Post Categoriesfeature first …

WordPress Post Categories

(WordPress Post Categories)

Note: We plan to provide step-by-step tutorials on how to use categories.

Let’s configure your categories settings as shown below:

  • In Title: type something that your visitors will understand, for example, “Choose A Topic…” (1)
  • Check Display as dropdown if you plan to use several categories (this significantly reduces the size of the widget content by displaying all categories in a drop-down menu). Leave the box unchecked if you want a list of all categories to display on the sidebar section. (2)
  • Leave the default settings for the remaining options, or see the additional notes on configuring the Categories widget below.
  • Click Save when finished …

Categories Widget settings

(Configuring a WordPress Categories widget)

Click Visit Site or refresh the page to see how your content will look to your visitors …

WordPress Categories widget added to sidebar navigation area

(Categories widget added to sidebar)

Practical Tip

Tips:

  • Change the default Uncategorized post category to something more meaningful.
  • If you use nested categories on your site, you may want to check the Show hierarchy option, otherwise leave this box unticked.
  • To display the number of posts published in each category, tick the Show post counts check box …

Category widget options - Post Count Enabled vs Post Count Disabled

(Category widget options – Post Count Enabled vs Post Count Disabled)

Add Recent Posts To The Blog Sidebar

The Recent Posts widget displays in the sidebar by default. All you need to do is configure this widget.

Click on its title bar to display the configuration settings …

Recent Posts widget

(Recent Posts WordPress widget)

There is not much to configure. You can add a title, select the number of posts to display and opt to display post dates. If you’re happy with the default setting for Number of posts to show, then just leave the widget as is, otherwise enter a number of posts to show and click Save

Recent Posts WordPress widget settings

(Recent Posts WordPress widget settings)

Your most recent posts will display on the sidebar …

Recent Posts WordPress widget on blog sidebar

(Recent Posts widget displayed on sidebar)

We provide a tutorial on how to create and edit a post in WordPress here: How To Create A New WordPress Post

Adding A Pages Widget

Next, we’ll add a widget to your sidebar to display your site’s pages.

Find a Pages widget in the Available Widgets section …

WordPress Pages Widget

(Pages Widget)

Drag the Pages widget to your active widget area …

Dragging and dropping a Pages widget into the sidebar navigation menu

(Dragging and dropping a Pages widget into the sidebar)

The Pages widget lets you configure the following options:

  • Title: Add a title to display above your links (e.g. “Pages“) (1)
  • Sort by: Sort how your pages display: by title (i.e. alphabetically), by page order, or page ID. (2)
  • Exclude: Prevent pages from displaying on your sidebar (3) …

Pages Widget settings

(Pages Widget settings)

By default, pages will be listed by title in alphabetical order. If you want to display pages using one of the other options, then choose a different method from the Sort by: drop-down menu …

Pages Widget settings - sort options

(Pages Widget settings – sorting options)

To prevent pages from displaying to visitors, type in their Page Ids separated by commas into the Exclude field of the widget …

Pages Widget settings - exclude pages

(Pages Widget settings – exclude pages)

We provide a tutorial on how to find a post or page ID in WordPress here: How To Find The Unique ID Of Pages And Posts In WordPress

Click the Save button when finished and click Close at the bottom of the widget box to minimize the widget.

Links to the blog’s pages will now display in the sidebar area …

Pages Widget on blog sidebar

(WordPress Pages Widget on sidebar)

Tip

Tip: You can add multiple Pages widgets to your sidebar. This is handy if you need to display separate groups of pages on the sidebar (e.g. “Products”, “Legal Pages” etc.)

Display Links On The Blog Sidebar

Next, we’ll add a widget for displaying external links on your sidebar section.

Before adding a Links widget to your sidebar section, we recommend setting up your Links section inside your dashboard first …

WordPress Links screen

(WordPress Links section)

Note: We plan to provide separate tutorials on how to set up and use the Links feature in WordPress.

To add the widget, select a Links widget in the Available Widgets section …

WordPress Links Widget

(Links Widget)

Drag the widget to your sidebar area …

Making Links Widget active

(Making Links Widget active)

The Links widget offers a number of configurable options, including the ability to specify what information to show about your links and how many links you want to display on your sidebar navigation area …

WordPress Links Widget Settings

(WordPress Links Widget Settings)

You can add as many separate ‘Link Widgets’ to the sidebar menu as you want. As you will see in a moment, this lets you create and display specific lists of links on your site …

Add Multiple WordPress Links Widgets To Your Sidebar Area

(Add Multiple WordPress Links Widgets To Your Sidebar)

You can sort links by Link title, Link rating, Link ID, or display links in Random order …

Links widget: 'Sort by:' drop-down menu

(WordPress Links widget: ‘Sort by:’ drop-down menu)

You can also create and display a list of items for a specific category, by selecting a link category from the ‘Select Link Category’ drop-down menu …

Links widget: 'Select Link Category' drop-down menu

( Links widget: ‘Select Link Category’ drop-down menu)

When you have finished configuring your Links Widget, click the Save button …

Links added to WordPress sidebar

(Links added to WordPress sidebar)

As the above example shows, you can display specific links to your site visitors (e.g. a list for a specific link category only), and add multiple link lists to your WordPress sidebar section.

How To Add And Configure Widgets In WordPress

***

This is the end of part 3 of this series of tutorials about how to use Widgets.

To view Part 4, click here:

***

"I have used the tutorials to teach all of my clients and it has probably never been so easy for everyone to learn WordPress ... Now I don't need to buy all these very expensive video courses that often don't deliver what they promise." - Stefan Wendt, Internet Marketing Success Group

How To Use And Configure WordPress Widgets – Part 2

Learn how to add, configure, and use text widgets on your WordPress sidebar …

Configuring Widgets On Your SidebarIn Part One of this step-by-step tutorial series, we explained the basics of using widgets in WordPress.

In this section we are going to show you how to configure several sidebar widgets in WordPress.

Configuring Commonly-Used WordPress Widgets

In a default WordPress installation, your site comes with a number of pre-installed active widgets, such as widgets for displaying external links, recent posts, news items, adding site search features, etc.

In a default WordPress installation, your site comes with a number of preinstalled widgets

(In a default WordPress installation, your site comes with several pre-installed widgets)

How To Configure Widgets On Your WordPress Sidebar Menu: Tutorial

In this tutorial, you will add, configure and reorder various commonly-used widgets, including:

  • Adding a clickable Contact Us graphic button linking visitors to your contact details page.
  • Adding a Categories section with a drop down menu.
  • Adding a Recent Posts section to display the latest posts.
  • Adding a list of your site’s most important Pages.
  • Display Links on the sidebar.
  • Adding an RSS Feed section.
  • Adding a Tag Cloud section.
  • Configure how your Archived Posts display on your sidebar navigation menu.

The Widgets section is located inside your WP administration area and can be easily accessed from the dashboard menu by selecting Appearance > Widgets

Understanding WordPress For Newbies: About WordPress Widgets

(Widgets Menu)

This loads the Widgets panel in your browser …

Widgets Screen

(Widgets Section)

Let’s start to configure your sidebar widgets …

Adding Text Widgets

Text widgets are incredibly useful …

Text widget

(Text widget)

Important Info

Rich Text Widget

From version 4.8 onward, WordPress has added native rich-text editing capabilities to text widgets …

Rich Text Widget

(Rich Text Widget)

This lets you quickly and easily format text, create lists, add emphasis, and insert links into your sidebar text …

(Format text easily with the new text widget)

Text widgets let you insert just about anything you want into your sidebar or other widget sections, such as quotes, ads, tips and more to your site … simply type in text or paste HTML into the content area. You can also add an optional title in the Title field. Remember to save your settings …

A text widget is extremely versatile

(Text widgets are really versatile!)

Example: Add A Help Button To The Sidebar Navigation Menu Using A Text Widget

For this example, we’ll set up a clickable help button on your sidebar that takes visitors to a page on your site (or an external site, e.g. a helpdesk) where they can contact you for help and support.

First, you will need to create or source a “help button” graphic image that you will use on your own site …

Add A Support Button To Your Sidebar Navigation Area Using A Text Widget

We’ll set up the clickable Help button to display at the top of the sidebar navigation area like in the example shown below …

Add A Clickable Support Button To Your Sidebar Navigation Menu Using A Text Widget

Step 1 – Upload your image.

To display an image on your site, the graphic image must be uploaded to your server. Upload the image to a folder on your server and note the path to your image location.

For example …

http://www.yourdomain.com/images/supportbutton.jpg

You will use this information in Step 3.

For visitors to go to your contact page when the graphic button is clicked, either create a contact page, or have an existing destination page already set up (e.g. a helpdesk). We will link the button image to this URL in Step 3

Step 2 – Create a support page.

Create a contact page and note its URL …

Add A Clickable Contact Button To The Sidebar Section Using A Text Widget

Step 3 – Create the HTML code for your text widget.

If you’re not a technical-minded person, don’t worry … this sounds a lot more technical than it is. Basically, we just need to create the instructions for your clickable image.

Your code can be written a plain text file and should look something like this …

Add A Support Button To Your Sidebar Navigation Area Using A Text Widget

  • Replace “http://www.yourdomain.com/contact-us” in the code with the URL of your contact page location.
  • Replace “http://yourimagelocation.com/img/supportbutton.jpg” in the code above with the URL of your image location.

The screenshot below shows the sections of the above sample code that you need to replace with the actual web addresses …

Add A Support Button To Your Sidebar Navigation Section Using A Text Widget

Replace the above URLs and then copy all of the above code to your clipboard when finished.

If you need help understanding basic HTML code, see this tutorial:

Now, go back to your Widgets panel …

Activate or deactivate widgets using drag-and-drop

(Widgets Screen)

Step 4 – Add a Text widget.

Add a Text widget to your sidebar where you would like the button to display.

In the Available Widgets area, select the Text widget …

WordPress text widget

(WordPress text widget)

Drag the Text widget to the Active Widgets section and release the widget at the very top of the Widget Area

Drag-and-drop your WordPress text widget

(Dragging and dropping your Text widget)

Step 5 – Configure your text widget settings.

Click on the widget title bar to configure its settings. Paste the code with the URLs to your contact page and graphic button into the text widget content area and click save …

Text widget

Add a heading to your widget if you want (e.g. “Need Help?”, “Get Support”, etc.) and paste the code with the correct destination URLs into the Content box, then click Save when done …

WordPress text widget

Important Info

Note: Remember to check your contact page and image links before pasting scripts into the Text Widget, or the clickable button will not work.

*** If using WordPress version pre-4.8 ***

If you’re adding text with no formatting tags, you may want to tick the Automatically add paragraphs box to wrap each block of text in paragraphs (note: this is not necessary if you paste in formatted HTML code like we’re doing in this tutorial).

Here is some text added to a Text widget with Automatically add paragraphs option not checked …

Automatically add paragraphs option not ticked

(Automatically add paragraphs option not checked)

Here is some text added to a Text widget with Automatically add paragraphs box ticked …

Automatically add paragraphs option selected

(Automatically add paragraphs option checked)

***

Step 6 – Refresh the browser.

After adding your text widget and HTML content, visit your site and refresh your browser. If all links have been entered correctly, then your clickable support button will display at the top of your sidebar menu …

Use A Text Widget To Add A Clickable Help Button To Your Sidebar Menu

(Clickable support button widget on sidebar)

The above screenshot shows the contact button in the sidebar menu of a newly-installed WordPress site.

Step 7 – Test your button.

The final step is to ensure that the clickable button works. Test the button to make sure that visitors will go to the help page when clicking the graphic image. If you are taken directly to the contact page, then the text widget has been set up correctly …

Test the text widget to make sure it works

(Test your text widget to make sure you’ve set up everything correctly)

Useful Tip

Text Widgets – Useful Tips:

If you want the support page to open in a new browser window when visitors click on the support (so they don’t leave the page they’re on), then change the text widget code from this:

Add A Clickable Contact Button To The Sidebar Navigation Area Using A Text Widget

To this (i.e. add the part containing target=”_blank” in the code):

Use A Text Widget To Add A Clickable Contact Button To Your Sidebar Section - open in new window

When inserting images into your sidebar navigation area, make sure that the width of the image doesn’t exceed the width of your sidebar column, especially if you are using a non-responsive WordPress theme. Note that some themes can display elements differently depending on their templates and layout. Some sidebars are wide and some are narrow. If the sidebar of your theme is narrower than the width of the graphic images, then you may need to either adjust the graphic size, or the column width to make elements display correctly on your theme.

Adjust column width or reduce image size

(Adjust column width or reduce image size)

More Tips:

  • If you don’t want to center your button in the sidebar, delete the <center> and </center> tags from the beginning and end of the line of code. The image will then be aligned to its default settings (normally left-aligned).
  • You can link the support button to any URL you like (e.g. to an external link, helpdesk, support forum, etc.) and change this anytime by replacing the links inside the text widget.

How To Use WordPress Widgets

***

This is the end of section 2 of this series of tutorials about how to use Widgets.

Click on this link to read the rest of this tutorial:

***

"This is an awesome training series. I have a pretty good understanding of WordPress already, but this is helping me to move somewhere from intermediate to advanced user!" - Kim Lednum