Optimizing WordPress Sidebars for Traffic & Conversions

Optimizing WordPress Sidebars for Better Traffic and Conversions

When it comes to creating a successful website, optimizing WordPress sidebars should be one of your top priorities. While creating compelling content is important, neglecting your sidebars means missing out on a powerful tool for good user engagement. In this article, we will discuss the true function of WordPress sidebars and provide tips for optimizing them to increase user engagement, traffic, and conversions.

The True Function of WordPress Sidebars

WordPress sidebars are limited spaces on either or both sides of a webpage that show information other than the main content. They provide a home to widgets that display advertisements, navigation menus, calendars, recent posts, and more. However, many users tend to fill sidebars with as many widgets as possible to accommodate site users’ diverse needs and preferences. This results in overcrowded pages that overwhelm users with too much information and can be interpreted as spammy. To avoid this, WordPress sidebars should only hold the widgets most relevant to the main content to increase user engagement.

Tips for Optimizing WordPress Sidebars

1. Limit the Number of Widgets Displayed

Take time to decide which widgets you should put in your sidebars. Avoid adding too many widgets as it can make your pages look overcrowded and overwhelming. Instead, choose the most relevant widgets that will help users engage with your content. Some common WordPress sidebar widgets include newsletter opt-in, internal links navigation menu, advertisements, social media icons, popular/trending posts, categories, recent/latest posts, search form, about, and related posts.

2. Customize Sidebars per Page or Post

Relevance is key when it comes to optimizing WordPress sidebars. Choose widgets that are relevant to a specific page or post and avoid showing irrelevant widgets. For example, not all pages have to show the recent post widget, not all posts have to show a certain author’s bio, and perhaps all pages should bear your email opt-in.

3. Use Floating Widgets

Have those important widgets (or even an entire sidebar) follow your users as they scroll up and down the page. These fixed, sticky, and floating widgets make it easy for users to take action whenever they feel the need to. They can do so regardless of where they are on the page. You can also turn floating widgets into call-to-action buttons by tucking them in a corner of a page.

Efficiently Achieving Your Goal of Optimizing WordPress Sidebars

To accomplish your goal of delivering highly-engaging websites efficiently in terms of time and money, follow these steps:

1. Understand What Your Customers Want and Your Business Needs

Understand what your site visitors are looking for, and make sure that your sidebars guide them as they explore your websites for the information or products they need.

2. Choose the Best Tools to Create a Highly-Engaging Website

Choose plugins that will help you save time designing and programming every part of your website, including your sidebars. For example, Widget Options is a plugin available for free at the WordPress repository that lets you perform both simple and complex widget management tasks.

3. Choose a Layout for Functionality and Style

Consider how your choice of layout will affect the overall functionality of your pages. Whether you choose a 2-sidebar, a single-sidebar, or a no-sidebar layout, make sure to place those widgets thoughtfully so as to help your users easily explore your site.

Final Words on How to Optimize WordPress Sidebars

Optimizing WordPress sidebars is crucial for increasing user engagement, traffic, and conversions. By limiting the number of widgets displayed, customizing sidebars per page or post, and using floating widgets, you can optimize your WordPress sidebars efficiently. Remember to understand what your customers want and your business needs, choose the best tools to create a highly-engaging website, and choose a layout for functionality and style. With these tips, you can take advantage of your sidebars and achieve your goal of creating a successful website.

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