WordPress Sidebars: Pro Tips & Mistakes to Avoid for Optimized Sidebars

In a number of cases, sidebars are perceived as blocks of the site where all sorts of things can be found. As a rule, a minimum designer’s effort is spent on the customization and management of sidebars, and nobody really puzzles over the correct distribution of the widgets inside.

But the truth is that a WordPress sidebar can turn out to be a useful source of traffic and user engagement with quick links and informative areas, functional options and more. All you need to do is to find the best look and structure, best content and deployment of the sidebars to get maximum profit from their existence on your sites posts and pages.

We invite you to join our discussion of WordPress sidebar pro tips you can choose to have on your website, as well as WordPress sidebar mistakes to avoid for having more optimized and lead generating sidebars.

1. What is a WordPress Sidebar and Why You Need it:

A sidebar in WordPress is a widget ready, navigation menu or supplementary information area that is graphically separated from the main content area. You can use sidebars for integrating any kind of additional information which does not consist a part of your site’s basic content, be it recent articles, recent posts, recent comments, social media links or something other.

Depending on the theme you are using and your preferences, you can have different sidebar choices.

Sidebars share high visibility and can make any kind of important or secondary content easy to notice and follow by your web visitors. The can help your web guests and users to navigate to the needed areas and parts of the site, find specific content or use some functionality.

From navigation menu to information blocks like recent publications, functional elements like search and email sign up forms, product and service offers and additional widgets, absolutely any kind of information can be highlighted with a WordPress sidebar.

WordPress sidebars are also known as advertisement friendly areas which means that you can use them for making money from ads placement.

2. WordPress Sidebar Pro Tips to Optimize the Use of Sidebars:

The majority of blogs have one or more sidebars appearing on every single page or at least on the most pages. As discussed above, those sidebars are intended to grant your web users with the needed additional information and guide them through different areas, forms, links and articles.

Today, if we try to analyze different websites and blogs for personal or business purposes, we’ll find something similar in the way they use widgets and sections for the sidebar. The basic ones most sidebars include are as follows: most popular posts, email signup forms, top selling products or services, social media links for social media profiles, advertisement and affiliate banners.

Well, optimizing your sidebars for better exposure and more presentable visual look and functionality of your site means finding WordPress Sidebar pro tips and tricks to exercise which you can do by reading the next part of our article.

Let’s see which some pro tips you are advised to add to your WordPress sidebar are.

Popular/Recommended Posts. Popular Posts a widget to be included into the sidebar first and foremost. Sharing the most popular and hot articles with your audience is always a good idea. Use WordPress Popular Posts plugin to generate the list of the popular posts and share it on the sidebar area. You can set the list to be updated within a specific time range.

As for the Recommended Posts, you as a website admin will have more freedom in suggesting interesting posts and articles to your readers and followers.

Subscription form. Subscription form is a modern strategic marketing and promotion move practiced by millions of website owners.

Whether you want to grow the army of your followers or establish direct communication with the customers interested in your products or services, having subscription form right in front of their eyes with sidebar is of great importance.

Social Media Profile Links. The power of social media platforms as traffic and conversion boosters can never be underestimated. Thus, you can use your WordPress sidebar to display social media links and social media sharing buttons to get your web content shared across different dynamic platforms and social environments.

WordPress Sidebar Mistakes to Avoid:

1. Overloading Sidebar with Too Many Widgets:

Sidebar is a wonderful area providing you with many possibilities to make everything neatly and compactly showcased or get everything really wrong. Sometimes people find a place in sidebar for any information or content they are not able to deploy on the other areas of a website.

This is not reasonable as every single part of your website makes sense. Try to add as many widgets as are really necessary to draw a beautiful picture visually and to help you get maximum results.

2. Keeping all the Default Widgets:

By default, WordPress comes loaded with specific widgets such as categories, archives, recent posts, recent comments and categories. You can quickly remove them from WP Admin Dashboard by dragging and dropping, and alternatively us third party plugins to substitute that default widgets with more useful ones.

Custom Sidebars- Dynamic Widget Area Manager:

Custom Sidebars is an attractive plugin you can use whenever you want to avoid one of the common WordPress sidebar mistakes of leaving the default widgets as they are. Manage unlimited widget configurations, make custom sidebar customizations and set custom widgets, create author specific sidebars, import and export custom sidebars with this amazing plugin.

3. Cluttered Look and Disarranged Widgets:

Another important point to consider is the sequence of the widgets appearing on the sidebar area. Organize them properly to support the user navigation throughout your website instead of distracting them with supplementary information or advertisements in the wrong place.

Adding Too Many Ads

Of course, sidebars can host multiple advertisements and banners, but try to avoid irritating your audience with too many advertisements and be sure web users are enjoying their time in your virtual domain.

About Sonnal S Sinha

Sonnal S SinhaSonnal S Sinha shares exciting WordPress themes, plugins and other WordPress related news for our viewers. He also posts selected WordPress developers interviews from time to time.