Menus are a quick and easy way for your readers to navigate through your website, and a good way to keep your site looking neat and organised. You can easily create and update a number of different menus and footers from your WordPress admin dashboard.
As menus are a way of organising and navigating through the pages on your site, you will first need to populate your site with interesting and high-quality pages and posts. We have a number of guides to help you create stunning pages, for example, take a look at our “Creating a Page” or “An introduction to dynamic templates” guides. Once you have added a number of high-quality pages and posts to your site, you can begin to organise them through headers, navigation menus, and footers. Read on to find out more.
Your menus can be accessed from the “Appearance” tab in the navigation bar on the left-hand side of the page. Hovering over the “Appearance” tab will display multiple options. From here you can access your “Themes”, “Customise” your site navigation, add and edit any “Menus”, and directly edit your theme in the “Editor”.
Clicking on the “Menus” tab will take you to a page where you can create or edit menus for your site.
There are two options within the “Menus” tab: “Edit Menus” and “Manage Locations”.
Creating and editing menus
The “Edit Menus” tab allows you to create and edit menus. In order to edit an already existing menu in this tab, simply choose the menu that you would like to change from the dropdown box at the top of the page, and click select.
This will open the menu in the “Edit Menus” tab, allowing you to make any changes. Alternatively, you can create a new menu by clicking on the “Create new menu” link beside the dropdown box.
In order to create a new menu, fill in its name in the “Menu Name” field. After entering the name, click the “Create Menu” button in order to create a new menu which you will then be able to edit.
Once the menu has been created you can begin to add content to it. Navigation menus can contain any pages, posts, post types, or taxonomies (such as categories and tags) that you have added to your site. These items can be added from the column on the left.
Each content type will be displayed in a separate panel which can be opened by clicking on the arrow on the right-hand side of the content name. You can select items from either your most recently added content, a list of all of a certain content type, or a search bar that will allow you to search for items by name.
In order to add an item, simply click on the checkbox beside the item name in order to select it, then press the “Add to menu” button at the bottom of the panel.
Multiple items can be added to a menu at once by selecting multiple checkboxes. Alternatively, you can select the checkbox of every item in a panel by clicking the “Select all” link at the bottom of the panel. This will allow you to add every item in a panel at once. Multiple content types can be added to the same menu, for example, any posts, pages, or categories can all be added to the same menu.
Once you have added an item to the menu, it will be displayed with its name and its content type in the “Menu Structure” section. Here you can see all of the items that have been added; you can also change their order, edit the way the item is displayed, and remove the item.
Items will automatically be displayed in the menu in the order that you add them. However, the order can quickly and easily be changed by dragging and dropping the items into a new order.
Alternatively, there is a small arrow beside the item name that allows you to open some customisation options. Once you have clicked on the arrow, there is the option to move the item around the menu using some links. Clicking on these links allows you to move the item either: down one, up one, under the item above it, or to the top of the menu. You can create multiple levels within your menu by moving items beneath one another. This will create sub-sections.
From this dropdown box, you also have a number of other customisation options. At the top of the dropdown box, there is the option to change the “Navigation label” of the item. The navigation label is the name of the item as it will appear in the menu. You can give the item any navigation label you like and it will not affect the original title of the content.
Whether you change the navigation label or not, the original title of the content will be displayed beneath the “Move” options. Clicking on this will take you to the actual item. For example, if your item is an “About” page, clicking on the original “About” page link will take you to that page.
Finally, clicking cancel at the bottom of the dropdown box will cancel any changes that you have made to the item and will close the dropdown box without saving it.
In order to remove an item from the menu, simply click on the delete button at the bottom of the item’s dropdown box.
Once you are happy with the content and structure of your menu, you can choose the location that you would like it to appear on your site. There are three available locations: a footer, a bottom footer, or a header menu. To add a menu to a specific location, simply click on the checkbox beside the location name to select it. If there is already a menu at that location, the name of the menu will be displayed beside the location. Adding a new menu to this location will replace the existing one. A single menu can be added to multiple different locations.
Finally, clicking on the “Save Menu” button at the bottom of the page will save any changes that you have made and will add the menu to the site.
If you decide that you no longer want to include this menu on your site, you can click on the “Delete menu” link at the bottom of the menu section on the left-hand side in order to delete the menu and remove it from your site. This will not affect any of the items within the menu.
The “Manage Locations” tab will display the available locations of the menus and any menu that is currently assigned to them. You can change the menu that is assigned to a location by choosing from the dropdown box beside the location. If you want to make changes to this menu you can then click on the “Edit” link beside the dropdown box to open the “Edit Menus” tab. If you would like to create a new menu for a specific location, clicking on the “Use new menu” link beside the dropdown box will open a new menu in the “Edit Menus” tab.
Once you are happy with the position of the menus you have chosen, click on the “Save Changes” button in order to save and implement any changes onto your site.
There is also the option to edit your menus with a live preview by clicking on the “Manage with live preview” button at the top of the “Menus” page.
This live preview can also be accessed by clicking on “Customise” from the “Menus” tab options and choosing “Menus” in the subsequent list.
From here you can create and edit menus and their locations, accompanied by a live preview of how your changes will look on the site. Simply click on the “Publish” button in the top right in order to implement any changes.