How to Use WordPress Widgets

How to Use WordPress Widgets

WordPress widgets are tools that allow you to customize your website with just a few clicks!  Widgets allow you to easily and quickly add nifty features to your site. Where these features show up depends on the theme you’re using. In most cases you’ll place them in your sidebar, but some themes will offer multiple sidebars, areas for footers, even different sidebars depending on which page type your visitor is viewing (OptimizePress is one theme that does this).

Each widget, whether an Opt-In form, Calendar, Blog Stats, etc., has a specific function. They aren’t normally complicated and are really easy to add and remove. This makes them great for testing. If you don’t like the look of feel of a particular WordPress widget, just remove it!

How to Add a Widget to a WordPress Website:

  1. Login to your WordPress Dashboard.
  2. Click on “Appearance” and then “Widgets”
  3. Select the Widget you’d like.
  4. Drag and Drop your Widget to the sidebar
  5. Edit the widget settings (if it has any)
  6. Save on the sidebar and…
  7. Test your new Widget by visiting your site.

It’s a pretty easy process. Remember to click the Save button after making any changes. Otherwise, all the changes you made will be lost.

How to Remove a Widget:

You install your widget with a simple “drag and drop.”  To remove your widget it’s the same process, but reversed. Select your widget on the sidebar and drag it to one of two windows on the Widgets page:

  • Available Widgets: Any widget you drop here won’t be active on your site AND will lose any settings you’ve added.
  • Inactive Widgets: Dropping a widget here will still inactivate the Widget BUT it will RETAIN any settings you’ve added.

Quick Tip:

You can change the order in which widgets are displayed on your sidebar. All you have to do is place the added widgets in the order you want them to be displayed on your sidebar. For instance, if you want the “Meta” widget to be displayed first, simply select and drag it to the top.

Where to find Widgets:

WordPress comes with a ton of great widgets pre-installed. You’ll also find some of your WordPress plugins have widgets associated with them (once you install the plugin, the widget will automatically appear on the Widget screen).

What questions do you have about using WordPress Widgets? Leave a comment below and if you’re reading this far, please share this post with a tweet, like or +1… Thanks!

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