Widgets are blocks of content that can be shown in widget areas such the homepage, sidebars and footer.
Each theme has different widget areas according to its design. Most of our themes have at least one of these widget areas.
- Homepage – Some of our themes show widgets on the homepage. See the Homepage guide for details.
- Footer – The theme you use may support widgets in the footer area.
- Sidebars – Several themes support a sidebar widget area.
Some of our themes incorporate optional sidebar widget areas into their design.
There are sidebars for different types of content. A sidebar is a column that shows to the side of the main content. It can be useful for navigation (e.g. sermon topics) and supplemental content (e.g. locations widget on the contact page). Some of our themes have the following sidebars.
- Page Sidebar – all regular pages
- Sermon Sidebar – page using the Sermons template, topics, books, single sermons, etc.
- Gallery Sidebar – pages using the Gallery or Galleries template, individual photos in a gallery
- Events Sidebar – page using one of the Events templates and single events
- People Sidebar – page using the People template, people groups and individual profiles
- Locations Sidebar – page using the Locations template and single locations.
- Blog Sidebar – page using the Blog template, categories, date archives, single posts, etc.
- Contact Sidebar – page using the Contact template
- Search Sidebar – search results
All regular pages (not using a template) use the Page Sidebar. Use a plugin like Simple Page Sidebars to create a custom sidebar for a specific page.
Setting Page Templates
The template a page uses determines the sidebar it uses. You can set a page template in the Page Attributes box. Read Page Templates for more information.
If this box does not show, click on Screen Options at the top right to make it visible.
A sidebar will not show if no widgets have been added to it. Sometimes you might have a sidebar with widgets but not want to show it on a specific page or post. When adding or editing the page or post, check the box for “Hide sidebar widgets” under Options. If the Options box is not showing, click on Screen Options at the top-right to make it visible.
WordPress comes with a set of standard widgets (tag cloud and recent comments, to name a few). Our themes add most of the following custom widgets.
- CT Archives – show sermon or blog archives by month (optionally as dropdown)
- CT Categories – show sermon topics, blog categories, etc. (optionally as dropdown)
- CT Events – show upcoming or past events
- CT Galleries – show all pages, posts, etc. that have a gallery
- CT Gallery – show photos from one or all galleries
- CT Giving – message and button linking to payment service of choice (by URL)
- CT Highlight – an image with title and description linking to any page
- CT Locations – show all locations
- CT People – show all people or people from a specific group
- CT Posts – show all blog posts or posts from a category, in any order
- CT Sermons – show all sermons or sermons by topic, book, series, etc.
- CT Section – show an entire section of content (Maranatha uses this on its homepage)
- CT Slide – for use on the homepage when the theme has a slider
The Giving widget lets you create a button that links to an external payment service.
A popular choice is PayPal which offers donation buttons. After signing up for PayPal create a button then copy and paste its URL into the widget. When you create the button there is an option to give you a URL instead of HTML code. Here are instructions.
Read How can we handle giving? for more information. PayPal is not the only option.
Adding a Widget
- Go to Appearance > Widgets.
- Click on a widget area to expand it.
- Drag a widget into the widget area.
- Click the widget inside of its widget area to set its options.
Editing, Reordering and Deleting
- Click a widget’s title to edit its options
- To reorder, drag a widget above or below another
- To delete, drag a widget outside of the widget area or click Delete below its options
- Temporarily store widgets in Inactive
Widgets in Customizer
You can also manage widgets with a live preview by going to Appearance > Customize > Widgets.
A sample widgets file is included with the theme. You can import this file to have the same widgets you see in the demo. Read the Sample Content guide for instructions.
Child Theme Note
If you are going to make code customizations by switching to a child theme, be aware that the widgets you have configured in the parent theme will not be available in the child theme. You can manually reconfigure them or use the Widget Importer and Exporter plugin to export them when using the parent theme then import them after switching to the child theme.