WordPress

WordPress Sidebar: The Complete Guide

The Best WordPress Sidebar Widgets
Written by Micah Phillips

Sidebars are considered a great way to add extra functionality and content to a website you own without making any distraction from the core content.

Most of the themes in WordPress are featuring a built-in sidebar that contains some widgets of WordPress already, such as the list of recent blog posts and search bar.

In this quick and brief discussion, we will show you how the theme’s built-in sidebar is being customized, addition and removal of content, and customizing an already existing content. Even if the theme uses multiple built-in sidebars, all of it may not fit the website ideally. Now, if you are feeling like being restricted by the theme you use on your website, then there’s a lot of things to let you know, especially how to customize a sidebar to be put on your website, including the areas that are not part of the theme.

Let us start then with a brief explanation of the WordPress sidebar.

Defining WordPress sidebar

A sidebar refers to the widgetized area of a WordPress website wherein contents can be displayed even though none is part of the main webpage. It is the secondary content added to the website through widgets. For instance, you can use widgets to display the list of your website’s freshly published blogs, search bar, or tag cloud.

Also, sidebars are considered useful as it helps website visitors to navigate the website easily. However, it can also offer additional functionality. One example of that is when you create an online store, and with that, you will utilize a sidebar for slider display. These sliders will then allow your visitors to filter the products depending on any category they want, such as delivery options and price.

Here, the sliders will be easy to reach without any distraction coming from your page’s core content. If you are looking forward to monetizing your website, sidebars are highly recommended for display adverts.

Although sidebar, being a term that suggests the vertical column displayed along with your website’s main content, it can still appear in several locations such as below or above the footer of your website.

Adding, Removing, and Editing Sidebar Widgets

Through a Dashboard, you can now easily and effectively customize your sidebar. It can also be possible through the WordPress Customizer.

Editing a Sidebar with Customizer

If you are going to edit your sidebar with a customizer by yourself, here are the methods that you need to know so you can expect satisfying results. So. Let’s start!

The method starts by logging on to the WordPress website. Then, select Appearance> Customize in the left-hand menu.

This will make the Customize tool be launched.

Next is to select Widgets in the left-hand Customizer panel. This will now display the list of the website’s widgetized areas, all of it! There is variation in the naming conventions depending on the theme, but typically, the sidebar has the word itself as the title. Once found, just click the sidebar widget.

Then, WordPress will display the list of all currently housed widgets within the sidebar. Given that, the following tasks must be done for overall completion.

Bring Order to your Widgets

The order of appearing widgets can be changed in the sidebar by simply grabbing a widget, putting it in a new position, and dropping it there.

Once you’ve felt happy with the changes you made, click Publish.

Tweak the Widget’s Title

The text appearing above each widget can be edited or even be removed entirely. For this to be done, you’ll only need to find a widget that has a title you want to edit then give a simple click to expand the section effectively.

• Make the edits to the Title text.
• Find and click Done.
• Publish the edits to make it public.

Now, the widget will be updated and display the edited title.

Remove the Widget from Sidebar

The next thing to do is remove the widget from a sidebar by clicking it to expand the section and selecting the red Remove option.

This will then make the selected widget disappear. Lastly, publish the edits to make it permanent.

Use Extra Widgets to Enhance the Sidebar

Does your sidebar look a bit empty? Well, WordPress supports different widgets that can be added easily to your
sidebars and make astonishing results. Given that, you need to consider the following:

• Select and click the Add a widget button.

• Look and assess the available widgets on the list. When you finally found what you want, select, and click it.

• After that, proceed to give your chosen widget a complete configuration option and title that will appear at the left side panel. Do note that there is variation in configuration, and it depends on what widget you’re working with at the moment.

• Next, rinse and repeat on the new widget you want to be added to the sidebar.

• Then, if you feel happy and satisfied with your actions, click Done.

• Lastly, click publish to save all the changes you’ve done.

Now, the sidebar will be updated, and that includes the new widgets, all of it!

If you are looking forward to more widgets than what we’ve included in WordPress, then you can try the WordPress widget plugin. Here, it will allow you to add calendars, call-to-call action buttons, weather forecasts, and a lot more.

Conclusion

Indeed, the WordPress sidebar is a vital tool to use in improving the processes and influence of your website when visited and used by its audience. Also, through this brief introductory discussion about it, we can cover different topics such as how to edit the built-in sidebar’s themes by adding, tweaking, and removing the wide range of widgets in WordPress.

Now, if you’re not a fan of the default sidebar theme of your website, a lot of alternatives are still worth it to discuss.

In this way, you can have a better and clearer understanding of how the sidebar works and how to use it. So, we are sure that you can now do this by yourself. Believe in yourself, for we believe in you!