How to Set Up Custom Sidebars With the Dynamic Widget Area Manager Plugin
A WordPress sidebar is one of the common parts of every WordPress blog. Its basic function is to help the easier navigation of the users, but it can also put an emphasis on certain useful elements, such as social media icons, a list of recent posts, banners, and so on. The sidebar is also the place where you can add all the things that do not fit with the rest of the blog content or the overall site structure but can still prove useful if incorporated into every page. It is also a great idea to place ads in there, since the sidebar is fairly noticeable, but still not too distracting to those who want to browse through your blog’s content without any disturbances. More and more website and blog owners are seen placing their social media links as well as various social media feeds in their sidebar areas.
Of course, it’s totally up to you to decide what to include in your WordPress sidebar. Depending on your website’s theme, you will have different widgets at your disposal. Sometimes, these widgets won’t be able to meet all your needs, but luckily, there’s a solution for this.
Different types of plugins allow you to add useful WordPress widgets to your site. For example, as we already mentioned, social media links are being put in more often than ever. Since these social link elements often don’t come included with the themes, a plugin such as the Social Icons Widget can be particularly useful.
As for the sidebar itself, there’s usually one sidebar per theme, and it is usually displayed automatically on all the blog posts. While this is great, you must be wondering what happens if you wish to have WordPress custom sidebar types for each post. This is where the Custom Sidebars – Dynamic Widget Area Manager plugin comes into play. Today we’ll show you how to set up WordPress custom sidebars with the help of this handy plugin.
What Is a Custom Sidebars – Dynamic Widget Area Manager Plugin
Every WordPress theme comes with a certain number of widget areas. These areas show up in the certain theme sections by default, and you can have access to these areas, as well as choose which elements you want to put in them. However, some themes come with an option that allows you to add a custom widget area.
Custom Sidebars – Dynamic Widget Area Manager Plugin lets you create these custom widget areas and gives you the ability to choose which widget area will show up on the page that you selected. And not only can you do this for the sidebar widget area, but you can also change other widget areas located throughout the theme.
For example, if you don’t want your website footer to look the same on every page, you can use this plugin to get different footer types on various pages.
What’s important to note is that this plugin cannot create a new widget area on a page – it only serves to replace an old one. To elaborate on this further, if your theme doesn’t support a side area, you won’t be able to add it with this plugin. In other words, you can only change the pre-existing side area with the new one.
Adding a Custom Widget Area with the Custom Sidebars – Dynamic Widget Area Manager Plugin
After you’ve installed and activated the plugin, go to Appearance > Widgets.
Once you’re in the Widgets section, you will notice that some new options have been added. Now, your widget areas are divided into two groups – one is the group with Custom Sidebars made with the help of the plugin, and the other is the group called Theme Sidebars, i.e. the theme widget areas that came integrated within the theme itself.
Also, you will notice a Create a new sidebar button, which has a purpose of creating the new sidebar and, just like we mentioned before, any other custom widget area as well.
To start the creation of the new widget area, select the Create a new sidebar button. You can also give a Name and Description to your WordPress custom sidebar if you want.
Finally, hit the Create Sidebar button, and your custom widget area will be created.
If you choose to add the description of your widget area, you should note that this description cannot be seen live. It can only serve as a note to you to further explain the purpose of that particular area.
Of course, aside from creating a custom sidebar and editing its name and description, you can also delete it in its entirety.
You can already define where you want the sidebar to appear while in the custom sidebar section itself. First, you need to click on the Sidebar Location. Once this screen opens, you will be given the list of all the widget area locations on the theme you’re using. Here you can also set up the options to make custom areas appear on the archive pages.
Afterward, you can add widgets to the new widget area in the same way as you would to the default widget areas.
One very important thing to remember is to replace the default widget area with the custom one if you want to use it. In this case, you should go to the Blog Sidebar widget area and check the Allow this sidebar to be replaced box. You can replace any other default widget area in the same way.
Adding the custom sidebar in the classic editor
If you wish to only add custom areas to specific pages, there’s a very simple way to do this. After installing the plugin, a new option will appear on the right side of the editor on every page that allows you to choose the sidebar (or some other widget area). All you need to do is select what you want to have shown on the page in question.
Adding the Custom Sidebar in the Gutenberg Editor
The Custom Sidebars – Dynamic Widget Area Manager plugin is also compatible with the Gutenberg editor. The principle of adding custom sidebars is the same as in the classic editor. On the right side of the editor, the option will show up that will allow you to select the sidebar you want to show up on that particular page (or post).
And that’s all you need to know to set up a WordPress custom sidebar with the Dynamic Widget Area Manager Plugin. Quite simple, right? Now, go ahead – create your own sidebar and start filling it with widgets that will be useful for both your business and future visitors!