WordPress Wednesday:: Setting Up Your Sidebar

Last week for WordPress Wednesday we started to dive into design. Now that you have your header and navigation bar set up, it’s time to start working on your sidebar.

Wordpress Wednesday

Your sidebar is the content on the side of your blog (duh, right?). I currently have mine setup for it to be on the right hand side of my blog.

To set up your sidebar you’ll need to click on the ‘Appearance’ tab and then click on ‘Widgets.’

Sidebar Widgets

All of my sidebar contents live within the ‘Primary Sidebar’ section that shows up on the right. If you click on the drop down arrow next to ‘Primary Sidebar’ your sidebar contents will expand.

This is where you can add things to your sidebar and change the order of things.

Primary Sidebar

Each section is called a widget. Some widgets will automatically appear in this section such as archives, calendar, tag cloud, eNews, etc. Other widgets are plugins that you download and then can add to your sidebar.

Organizing Widgets

I’ll go into detail about plugins later. For now we’ll just stick to the pre-loaded widgets and the other type of widget which is a ‘Text’ widget.

To give you an idea of how my sidebar is setup, I’ll breakdown which sections were pre-loaded widgets and which were text widgets.

Text and Pre-loaded Widgets

If you look on the right hand side, the subscribe by email, search, tag cloud and blog archives sections were all pre-loaded widgets. To add those to your sidebar you would find each widget on the main widget page and drag and drop it into your primary sidebar in the order you want them to appear.

The other kind of widget is a ‘Text’ widget. Essentially this is a widget that you can manually add code into.

Text Widget

You can also create your own section title for those as well.

For example, my About Me at the top of my sidebar is created using a text widget. I used ‘About Me’ for the title and added the necessary code/text for my image and short blurb about myself to appear.

Text Widget: About Me

I’ll get into coding a little later as well and provide all the code I used for my ‘Text’ widgets.

But, for now at least you have your sidebar started. You can experiment and play around with the different widgets and what you want to have show up on your blog.

Take a look at other blogs and their different sidebar sections to give you an idea of what you would like to have in yours.

Next week I’ll get into the fun stuff…plugins!

If you missed the previous WordPress Wednesday topics, here’s a list of things we’ve already covered::

-WordPress.com vs. WordPress.org

-Securing a domain name

-Hosting

-Setting up your header and navigation bar

-Creating a favicon

-Sidebar Plugins

-Installing Facebook like box and Instagram widget

-Installing Social Sharing bar

-How to add a ‘Pin It’ button to posts

-How to generate related post thumbnails

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