When developing and working on your new WordPress website, you need to pay extra attention to the navigation and menu system. Otherwise, you won’t end up with that feature-rich WordPress website that you want. With a good navigation menu system, you help to make sure that your visitors have a good time while browsing your website. This is where the WordPress navigation menu comes into play. Read on to find out how to set up a menu correctly.
When it comes to WordPress Navigation Menus, they are really not that hard to create and manage. By reading through this “How to add a WordPress Navigation Menu” guide, you will have a better understanding on how to get the job done correctly.
A navigation menu is used to define the navigation structure of a website. Since your WordPress website is made out of a large number of posts and pages, you need a way to keep all of these pages and posts organized. This is where the navigation menu comes into play. All of your website pages need to be inter-connected with each other through a proper navigation scheme.
On the other hand, you must also ensure that people who come to your WordPress site are provided with a proper structure of pages so that they can access all of your site’s resources. This is what the navigation menu is for.
Most WordPress themes come with at least one navigation menu. In fact, you will discover that some of them even come with multiple navigation menus. If you are interested in developing a complex website with the help of WordPress, keep reading on to learn about the more advanced features of the menu’s and how to set them up accordingly.
Alright, now that you have a better idea of what WordPress navigation menus are and why they are needed, let’s go ahead and get into the actual creation of the menu’s piece. Following are the steps that you must follow in order to create navigation menus for your website.
- Login to your WordPress website’s Dashboard.
- On the left side of the Dashboard, you will find the ‘Appearance’ menu. Go ahead and mouse over Appearance and click on the ‘Menus’ option. This will bring up the WordPress Menu Editor.
- On the top of the page, you will need to click on the “Create a new menu”
- Now, go ahead and type in the name for your new menu. Think “Main Navigation”, “Header Navigation”, “Footer Navigation” etc..
- Now, go ahead and click on the Create Menu button to begin adding items to your new menu.
- Once your new menu has been created, you can go ahead and begin adding items to this new menu. On the left hand side, you’ll find a column that says “add menu items”.
- On the left pane, under the “Pages” tab, go ahead and click on “View All” in order to bring up a list of all currently published Pages on your WordPress site.
- Here is where you can select the pages that you want to appear in your navigation menu by checkin the box next to the item.
- On the bottom of this left pane, you will need to click on the “Add to Menu” button in order to add your item(s) to the new navigation menu that you just created. Click the Save Menu button once your are done adding all of your items. P.S. You might need to rename the menu items (in the right column) to help them fit better in your navigation menu. For instance, instead of saying “How to Add a WordPress Navigation Menu”, you might rename the page to “Navigation Menu Creation” or something of the sort.
If you follow the above steps, you should be able to create a new navigation menu for your WordPress site in no time. The outlined steps above have been written in a way that even a beginner can follow them to create their menu with ease.
An additional thing to keep in mind is that certain WordPress templates allow you to actually have more than one menu on your site. To create these additional menus, you just have to repeat the previous steps outlined.
In order for your menus to look great, you will have to spend some time with the customization piece. Following are the steps that you should follow in order to customize your WordPress navigation menus.
One of the best and easiest customization’s that you can do is to go ahead and arrange the items on your WordPress navigation menu. You can drag and drop the items around throughout your menu. Doing this allows you to arrange things on your website the way you want them to be. You can just pick any of the newly created menus and drag/drop the items wherever you want them to go.
Another customization that you should do is to go ahead and create nested drop down menus. These menus have a parent menu as well as additional children menu items. You will be able to define the menu structure effectively with this “How to Add a WordPress Navigation Menu” guide’s step by step instructions.
So for the nested menu customization, you will need to add the child menu items to your new menu by following the initial above-mentioned steps on menu creation. Then you will need to drag a child menu item and place it directly under a different item in your menu. You will need to play around with this a bit to really understand how WordPress thinks, but even this is pretty basic and not much advanced knowledge is required. Once you drop an item under a different menu item, the WordPress menu interface automatically assigns these new items as child menu items. You can have a parent and child menu up to layers deep.
You will also come across the need to add categories to your new WordPress navigation menu. I personally like placing all of my posts and pages under a certain category. Once the posts and pages are categorized under a category, you can then add this Category to the navigation menu. The best way to do this is to go ahead and add the category itself as the main parent menu item (you can find your categories on the left hand side). Once you add the category to your menu, you can then add that category’s items (posts/pages) as children items to this parent (category) item. In addition to categories, you can also add custom links to your menu.
Navigation menus are one of the most essential features within the WordPress website universe. You must have a properly defined navigation menu on your site in order to make sure that you are helping people navigate through the website with ease. The steps outlined in this “How to Add a WordPress Navigation Menu” guide can help you create fully customized WordPress menus with ease.
If you are unsure on how to do something in terms of WordPress Navigation Menu’s, feel free to visit WordPress’s official page on menu creation here.