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How to Wow Them with Widgets

How to Wow Them with WIdgets

Before I found WordPress, I tried different solutions for getting my business on the web.

I went through a Dreamweaver stage, an iWeb stage (that was an Apple product), and a use-the-website-creator-your-webhost-offers stage.

At least I had something to show for my efforts.

But it wasn’t much. And my options for customizing those websites were limited. Then, in late 2009, I was introduced to WordPress. And I’m such a fan, I co-created a product that’s a step-by-step course about WordPress.

One of the best features of WordPress are the built-in widgets. Once you’ve mastered widgets, you’ll have the ability to add all sorts of cool functionality to your website.

What are widgets?

WordPress widgets are delightful little containers for just about anything you’d like to add to your website that’s not the standard fare which appears on a post or a page.

Widget locations will vary by theme, but typically you’ll find them in:

  • The header area of a website, often on the right side of the header
  • The sidebar area
  • The footer area

WordPress has many widgets available right out of the box.

If you use the Genesis Framework, like I do, you’ll have access to quite a few widgets that have been designed exclusively for the framework. Here’s a complete list of available Genesis Framework widgets.

How can you use widgets on your website?

Some widgets are pre-built and simply need to be dragged into place wherever you’d like to use them. Let’s take a look at the WordPress Popular Posts widget, for example.

To use Popular Posts, simply grab it from the Available Widgets column, and drag it over the section where we want it to appear on our website.

Insert a widget into your WordPress site

Once it’s in place, click on the down arrow to see the options that are built into the widget. This one asks you to fill out how many posts you want to show, and whether to show how many people rated the post.

Fill in missing information so your widget will work
Once you fill out this information and save it, you’ll see the widget appear on the pages of your site.

To take a look at your widgets before making them live, go to Appearance > Customize, and preview your site.

Check your widget before you make it live

Want to learn more about widgets?

There’s a lot more to know about widgets, and it’s easiest to show you how to use them with a live demonstration.

That’s why Wendy Cholbi and I got together to bring you a webinar that shows you how to make the most of the mighty widget.

It’s free, fast-moving, and fun.

To watch this — and all the other Brown Bag Webinars — click the button below.


Pamela Wilson

Pamela Wilson

Pamela Wilson is an online educator, author, keynote speaker, and the founder of BIG Brand System.

Pamela Wilson

I want to help you take the next step. Pick your free workshop topic and let’s do this!

2 thoughts on “How to Wow Them with Widgets”

  1. Great post! I love widgets, but get frustrated with those that don’t interact well with my website theme.

    Is there a widget for adding your books within your website? I know Amazon has them which I use, however what about if you want to add more information about your book (other buy sites, book club questions, reviews, etc.) in the same place? It would be nice to create your own widget with information about your book.

    • I don’t know of one specifically Elke, but there seems to be a widget for almost anything these days, so it would be worth it to take a look.

      When looking at widgets, be sure to pick one that has been updated recently, is well supported (the creator answers questions), and has a notation that it works with your version of WordPress.

      If you find a good one, come on back and let us know! 🙂

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