Widgets are tools that allow a user to add and control features or content to a sidebar, header or footer. In fact, they are cleverly disguised pieces of code that a user can manipulate by simply dragging and dropping a widget into a desired location on a page.
Where do widgets come from?
- Some widgets come from your WordPress install.
- Other widgets may be included with your theme.
- Many plugins provide widgets.
Where are your widgets?
- Open your Dashboard >Appearance>Widgets.
- Available Widgets: These are the widgets available for you to use.
- Widget Areas (these will depend on your theme)
- Sidebar or Main Widget Area: This region will be pre-populated with widgets at install.
- Footer Widget Area(s)
- Header Widget Area(s)
Widgets included with the WordPress Install:
Archives: Displays links to the monthly post archive of your site, either as a list or drop-down menu.
Calendar: Shows a calendar with clickable links on the days you have a published post.
Categories: Adds either a list or drop-down menu that links to category pages.
Custom Menu: Easily adds one of your custom menus to your site.
Meta: Provides links to log in and out, go to the admin area, access RSS feed links, and visit WordPress.org
Pages: Displays a menu of your static pages with the ability to exclude pages and select an ordering method.
Recent Comments: Displays a list of up to 15 of the most recent comments on your posts.
Recent Posts: Lists up to 15 of the most recently published posts on your site.
RSS: Shows entries from any RSS or Atom feed.
Search: Provides a simple search form on you site.
Tag Cloud: Displays your most frequently used tags in the popular “cloud” format.
Text: Can be used to include ant text or HTML code.
Don’t be afraid to try these widgets and experiment with the various options they offer. The only problem with widgets is that they are addictive and fun to add, but resist adding to many just because you can. Make sure they provide relevant value to the overall objective of your website.