The next tab that we will cover is the Widget Tab. I really love the flexibility of widgets. Much like menus that we spoke about in our last post widgets are totally customizable. There is a plugin that you can download that will allow you to make as many sidebars as you want, then you can have a special sidebar for specific pages. For example, next to blog articles you can have a sidebar with other blogs and a contact form. On videos you can have related videos and a phone number to call. On your contact us page it wouldn’t make sense to have a contact form on sidebar, so you can make a custom sidebar on that page or have no sidebar at all.
To activate a widget in your sidebar simply drag it into the proper sidebar and follow the instructions within that specific widget. Click save, and it should show live on your site. (If you have a caching tool set up then you may need to delete cache in order to see the changes.)
What’s truly great about widgets is that If you can imagine a widget chances are that there is already a plugin for it. For example, do you want a Twitter feed widget, want a Facebook like box, want a Google Badge, an archive menu, or a calendar? All of these are either built in to the widgets or there is a plugin you can download that will allow you to do it. If there somehow isn’t then you can have someone create the code for a widget and you can drag a “Text” widget into the sidebar and just drop the code into that box, and then the code will show on your sidebar.
Right now, the widgets that I have set up on my site are a text box for a google ad, a Facebook Like box (that I spoke about when we discussed plugins), a search box (available by default in the widgets), a text box with a Twitter feed that I created on Twitter widgets, and a Google Plus Badge
The sidebar is a great place to offer a free eBook, suggest a product to buy, suggest articles or videos, etc. Whatever you can think of you can add to your sidebar from the widget tab.