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Getting Started Level 8

Creating Custom Menus on Your Website – Lesson 8



Today is going to your first introduction to proper organization on your website. One thing that we always need to remember is that we are building our websites for PEOPLE, and our visitors and how someone would view our content and our navigation is what should dictate how we present our content.

In other words, if your website is difficult to navigate, people simply won’t. The may read your content, and then just move onto another website. You can increase your website “page views” and overall website revenue if you understand proper navigiation

Introducing “Custom” Menus in WordPress.

The default WordPress menus work in very strange ways and can be quite awkward. Typically when you add a page, it automatically goes to the main menu. A post, will go to the homepage blog roll (not the main menu).

As a website owner, you want FULL control of your navigation as your theme by default won’t do a very good job of this. Fortunately, it is quite straightforward to create Custom Menus.

Navigation is going to be a critical element to your user experience moving forward and will impact your rankings (as Google ranks sites with proper navigation better), so this is an important step here.

I have created a“Creating Custom Menus, Navigation, & Widgets” video walking you through the process of creating custom menus. You can check it out below.

Wistia video thumbnail

Task 1: Create a Menu

There are a few simple steps to creating a custom menu. The first thing you need to understand is where to find the Menu management section within your WordPress admin area.

Under the Appearance, click the Menus sub heading.

This will take you to the custom menu creator.

Under the left tab, you are going to see a Posts section. Posts are not added to your navigation by default, so you are going to need to click the Posts tab and it will show a list of your Posts.

In this case, we have only create the About Me post. Click the check box associated with that, and then click the Add to Menu.

**Note: Most themes by default will add Pages to the top menu, but if you don’t see your Privacy Policy within the Menu Structure section, you will need to add that.

Your About Me page has now been added to your menu structure (as shown below).

Once added to your Menu Structure, you can reorganize your menu in any way you like by dragging and dropping them. In this case, I am going to add my About Kyle post above the Privacy Policy, which is going to put it to the “left” of this within the live menu on my website. So in essence, I am ordering my pages here.

Upon completing my menu order, click the “Create Menu” button and you will establish your new menu.

After you have done this, you are going to want to add your newly created menu to your website, to override the Main Menu on your site. You are going to see a new tab created after you have created your new menu called “Manage Locations”.

You will want to click this tab, and then under the “Main Menu” item you are going to choose the menu you just created, in this case it is called “Main Menu”. After doing that click Save Changes. You are set!

For example purposes, here is what my live website looks like with my newly updated menu.

You can see the order of the menu items and that my “About Kyle” post comes before the “Privacy Policy” post.

And we are done. It is as simple as that and as we continue to build out our website, we are going to be reorganizing our websites regularly, managing this menu and likely creating “sub menus” which we will be getting into later as we have more content on our websites.

Nice work thus far!

Lesson List

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