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How To Create Your Navigation Menus in WordPress

I appreciate my readers here on my blog, so as a thank you I would like to give you one of the lessons from my WordPress online classes.

The ability to create menus easily in WordPress makes it a powerful tool. Depending on your theme, you may have 1 -2 navigation bars. But in addition to that you can easily create custom menus for sidebars, footers, or any widgetized area. In this lesson I walk you through how to create menus using pages, posts, categories and custom links for both your navigation bars and other customized menus.

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Key Points from this Video

1. Creating Your Menu – Use Appearance > Menus when creating your navigation bars. You start by first naming and creating your menu.



2. Building Your Menu - Once you have created it, you will an option to automatically create a new menu with all of your existing pages. Or, you will be able to add pages, categories or custom links using the boxes on the left.

Pages – Here you will be able to add any pages you have published on your site. If you save any pages as drafts, they will not be able to be added to your menus until published.

Links – This allows you to create a custom link in your navigation bar. For example, if you wanted to link to another site you have, you would simply put in the URL and the label (text) you want to show in your navigation bar. This is also a great way to link to direct blog posts in your site as well.

Categories – You can easily add categories to your navigation bar. This allows you readers to click on it, and read the most recent posts from any chosen category. A great way to organize your blog or website even more!



3. Editing Options – Once you have added to your menu, you can open it up and do more edits. For example, here you will see three areas I am pointing to.

Navigation Label – This by default is pulled in from the title of your page. This is what will appear in your navigation bar. You can edit this without affecting your page title.

Original – This let’s you know what the original name of the page was.

Title Attribute – When you mouse over a navigation item, this is what will show up in the yellow box. It’s does help some with SEO to be a bit more descriptive as I have done in my example. Also, this can also help with software readers with disabilities are using.

Note the highlighted Move Down one. You are able to rearrange the order of menu items by dragging or dropping, or using this feature. Depending on how many items are in your menu will depend on how many options appear there. But this option will not let you move a menu item right after adding it. You will need to save your menu first.

menu specs


4. Editing Menus – You can also edit any existing menu easily.

edit existing menus


4. Menu Placement – This tab gives you the option to place a specific menu in your themes menu locations. This will all depend on your theme and how many navigation menu spots it gives you.

manage locations


5. Custom Menu Widget – You can also create custom menus to put in your sidebar, footer or any other widgetized area of your theme. Simple drag the Custom Menu widget into any widget area, and choose the menu you want to appear. Great tool for creating smaller, customized menus of services, products, or a list of vendors or other blogs you want to share. This replaces the old Links feature in WordPress for what was commonly known as Blogroll. This can be done easily using Custom Links.

menu custom widget


Genesis Child Theme Tip: If your theme has two menu locations, you can use the Genesis Simple Menu plugin to create custom menus for the second location for any specific page or post.


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15 Responses to How To Create Your Navigation Menus in WordPress

  1. trish September 23, 2013 at 10:25 am #

    another great tutorial Bob, thanks very much

  2. Rama September 26, 2013 at 6:18 am #

    Bob, an excellent tutorial about creating navigation menus in wordpress. It contains both video and step by step guide, I never knew that it was so easy to create such menus, thanks a lot.

    • Bob Dunn September 27, 2013 at 2:13 pm #

      Hey Rama, so glad to hear you found it useful. The one thing that drives me nuts about videos is having to rewatch to revisit one key point. That’s why I added the text and screenshots. Thanks!

  3. Amit Garg February 11, 2014 at 10:53 am #

    Thanks Bob!
    It’ll take lots of hours if I haven’t seen this video and tried to learn it by myself.
    I have already spent 1-2 hours in newly created wp installation to create menu but could not gotten success before watching your tutorial.

  4. Lynda May 5, 2014 at 1:34 pm #

    I came across your site from a google search because creating navigation menus were really confusing me. Your video was so easy. Thanks.

    • Bob Dunn May 5, 2014 at 1:50 pm #

      That is great to hear, thanks Lynda. I am a big fan of “easy”. :D

  5. Lynda May 5, 2014 at 2:13 pm #

    Just looking again at your written instructions and you appear to have your images missing. Could be me though.

    • Bob Dunn May 5, 2014 at 2:17 pm #

      Just saw that, ugh. Broken links… fixed though… enjoy!

  6. Jaana May 25, 2014 at 11:23 pm #

    Thank you very much. I was starting to get frustrated until googling, I found your video.

    • Bob Dunn June 11, 2014 at 7:03 am #

      Yes, google is our friend!

  7. Steven Gliebe June 6, 2014 at 7:22 am #

    This is a great video, Bob. I send it to total WordPress beginners often. Thanks for making it available.

    • Bob Dunn June 11, 2014 at 7:04 am #

      Really appreciate your sharing this with others…cheers!

  8. Ankit August 17, 2014 at 4:35 am #

    Awesome Artical for How to Add Menu..

    Thank you so Much .

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