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Whether you just started using WordPress or are looking for ways to improve it, you’ll need to pay attention to your website navigation.
This helps your customers get the information they need in a matter of seconds, and basically avoids any confusion about the structure of your web page.
In this article, we’ll give you a step-by-step guide on how to add a navigation menu to your WordPress website.
A navigation menu is a collection of links that directs website visitors to a specific location on your site. The most common type of navigation menu is a horizontal bar at the top of the page.
Other formats include:
Your WordPress theme typically determines where your navigation menu will be placed. Most themes have a top-level primary menu, and some themes might also have secondary menus and footer menus.
Simply put, the navigation menu assists you in structuring your website as efficiently as possible.
Did you know that WordPress menus can actually enhance the search engine optimization (SEO) of your website? Yup, making sure your menus are easy to understand can help you rank higher, because search engines love to reward relevant content.
Also, making sure your website is optimized and is always running at top performance, greatly helps with SEO and is achievable if you’re all set up with one of the best web hosts.
So let’s look at the ways on how menus can improve your SEO:
The secret is to place menus in a visible place that is neatly organized. While the advantages of better SEO are fantastic, at the end of the day, menus also make it simple for your readers to locate the content you’ve created for them.
Want to get even more hands off?
If you don’t love dealing with the very technical parts of your site, a managed web host can be worth looking into. Here, the host helps you look after things like security updates and patches. Check out our write up on the best managed web hosting platform for more info!.
Custom menus are what makes your website stand out from the rest.
Here’s how to do it:
I’m pretty sure you’re excited to add navigation items and links to your menu, so let’s start from the beginning!
You can access the navigation menu interface by:
Right now, you’re in the Menus interface, wherein you’ll be prompted to make a menu right away. The next things you’ll have to do are:
That’s all there is to it! You just made a menu.
After you’ve created your menu, it’s now time to specify where to put it. You can do this when WordPress shows you a screen that includes the Menu Settings. The Display location option is what you’re primarily concerned with for this step.
For instance, our main navigation menu at Bitcatcha (and most other websites) is clearly displayed in our header.
If you want to follow just that, it’s best to click on:
But, this isn’t something you should always do and you should choose the location that best fits your website. For instance, you might find that an off-canvas menu suits your website’s layout better.
Once the new menu has been created, you will see a “Add menu items” option enabled in the left column, allowing you to quickly and easily add the items to your custom menus with a few clicks.
As you can see, the sidebar has sections for various things, including:
Adding a post, page, and category is very simple here, but in the custom link, you should provide the full URL of a page as well as the link text that will be visible for that link. You might also see extra sections with menu items that are particular to your site, depending on the specific plugin and/or theme that you’re using.
If you’ve decided that you need to make some amendments to your menu, you’ll be glad to know that there are a lot of ways for you to easily edit it. Let’s take a look at some of them.
When you begin adding multiple menu items, you may suddenly feel the need to rearrange them. This is fairly simple to do, as you’ll just have to drop and drag them into the position you want. Here’s how you do it:
Also, you can drag a menu item below another menu item to make sub-menus:
Remember to click “Save Menu” after you’ve finished making changes to your menu.
You can also remove any current menu items or menus. It’s a pretty straightforward process and all you have to do is:
After doing this, your website’s added menu will be removed.
WordPress makes it incredibly simple to add unique links to your menu. It can be used to link to other websites you own as well as your online store and social media profiles.
You can create custom links by using the Menu screen’s Custom Links tab:
To increase conversions, you can even get creative and include social media icons or call-to-action buttons in your menu.
When you really dive into the functionality of a Navigation Menu, you’ll realize how such a basic feature gets to offer so much for your website. The possibilities are almost endless and the only limit is your imagination and creativity.
You can even find that you can do so much more than what we mentioned earlier. Changing things such as your font size and color, knowing where to place the menus, and even adding a sidebar or a footer are all possible even with just the WordPress theme customizer.
By customizing your menus by how they look and feel, they become special to you, making you stand out from the crowd.
Menus are a simple feature that often gets overlooked.
Yes, they are a very basic element, but they’re one of the things that make up great websites, giving you an opportunity to increase your SEO ranking which translates to more leads and conversions.
Thankfully, adding, customizing, and editing Navigation Menus doesn’t require you to be a WordPress pro. All you have to do is follow our guide and you’re one step closer to your business goals!