The ability to create menus easily in WordPress makes it a powerful tool. Depending on your theme, you may have 1 -2 navigation bars. But in addition there are other uses for custom menus. The important part is making sure your visitors can easily use your menus to get around your site.
1. Creating Your Menu:
– Use Appearance > Menus when creating your navigation bars. You start by first naming and creating your menu.
2. Building Your Menu
– Once you have created it, you will an option to automatically create a new menu with all of your existing pages. Or, you will be able to add pages, categories or custom links using the boxes on the left. They will then appear under the menu structure
Pages – Here you will be able to add any pages you have published on your site. If you save any pages as drafts, they will not be able to be added to your menus until published.
Links – This allows you to create a custom link in your navigation bar. For example, if you wanted to link to another site you have, you would simply put in the URL and the label (text) you want to show in your navigation bar. This is also a great way to link to direct blog posts in your site as well.
Categories – You can easily add categories to your navigation bar. This allows you readers to click on it, and read the most recent posts from any chosen category. A great way to organize your blog or website even more!
Menu Settings – There are a couple of options here. 1) If you tick the box Automatically add new top-level pages to this menu, it will do just that. When you create a new page it will automatically be added without you having to come in here and add it manually. This is a good option if you just have one menu as opposed to several menus. 2) You will also have the option to choose where this menu appears, depending on your theme and how many menu spots it has. You can also change this in the Manage Locations which I show further down the page.
3. Editing Options – Once you have added to your menu, you can open it up and do more edits. For example, here you will see three areas I am pointing to.
– Navigation Label – This by default is pulled in from the title of your page. This is what will appear in your navigation bar. You can edit this without affecting your page title.
– Title Attribute – When you mouse over a navigation item, this is what will show up in the yellow box. It’s does help some with SEO to be a bit more descriptive as I have done in my example. Also, this can also help with software readers with disabilities are using.
– Original – This let’s you know what the original name of the page was.
Note the highlighted Move Down one. You are able to rearrange the order of menu items by dragging or dropping, or using this feature. Depending on how many items are in your menu will depend on how many options appear there. But this option will not let you move a menu item right after adding it. You will need to save your menu first.
4. Editing Menus
– You can also edit any existing menu easily by choosing it from this dropdown.
5. Menu Placement
– This tab gives you the option to place a specific menu in your themes menu locations. This will all depend on your theme and how many navigation menu spots it gives you.
6. Custom Menu Widget
– You can also create custom menus to put in your sidebar, footer or any other widgetized area of your theme. Simple drag the Custom Menu widget into any widget area, and choose the menu you want to appear. Great tool for creating smaller, customized menus of services, products, or a list of vendors or other blogs you want to share. This replaces the old Links feature in WordPress for what was commonly known as Blogroll. This can be done easily using Custom Links.