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Types of WordPress Widgets

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Now that we’ve gone over what a widget is and how to work with them on your WordPress website let’s take a look at the types of widgets available. WordPress has a couple of different types of widgets built in.

I place them into 3 different categories:

  • Blog related widgets
  • Safely ignored widgets
  • Widgets are useful on a small business website

Blog Related Widgets

Blog related widgets are widgets that are intended to help you display or navigate around blog posts. Examples of that are Archives and Calendar. Archives are, of course, are posts by month.

The Calendar widget shows you widget posts by date so it’s not a regular calendar, it’s a calendar that shows you when the last post was. And if you click on that date it takes you to an archived page that shows all the posts on that date. So unless you are blogging a lot, it’s an entirely superfluous and not a useful widget.

The following are all blog related widgets.

  • Archives
  • Categories
  • Meta
  • Recent Comments
  • RSS
  • Recent Posts
  • Tag Cloud
  • Thesis Killer Recent Entries

These widgets won’t display anything related to a page. They only display things related to blog posts. They can be useful when you are using a blog for business purposes. Although some of them are useless like Meta.

Also if you are using Thesis then the Search and the Google Custom Search are also useless widgets. As well as Calendar for most business websites.

Widgets Useful for Small Business Sites

Widgets that I think are useful to small business websites are the Thesis Search widget, the text widget, custom menu and pages widget.

The Text widget is really the workhorse widget. It’s the most useful and versatile widget.

Pages widget may be useful as long as you don’t have a ton of pages because it actually does list every single page on your website. But it can be a useful one. And then the custom menu can also be useful.

But by and large almost all the widgets you can use on a small business website are generally either there because plugins create them or it’s a text widget.

Agility Skin Page Specific Content Widget

If you are using the Thesis Theme and Agility Skin then the Agility Page Specific Content is another very useful widget for small business site. It’s even more useful for a Content Management site.

Let’s look at what you can do with this widget. You could put a title in here if you want. You can put a title in here but not show it as well. That way you can tell what this widget is supposed to do on the admin side.

For this example, we’ll call it video but we won’t show the title. Hit save. And then if we are on a page, say this page, we can come over here and edit the page. Let’s go find a YouTube video over here. Go to my channel. So then we can grab the URL here.

If you come down to Agility page details, you can see there is a place for you to change the schema, a place for you to set an Icon, a place for you to tell the site that you’ve got some responsive video and a place for you add page specific widget content.

Anything that you put in here will show up in that page specific content widget when this page is being displayed. So, for example, if we post that video there and we hit update and we view the page…whoops I needed to check the responsive video on that. But you can see that showing up here. Let’s go back and check responsive first. Since I’ve got a video there I’m going to check this to say so.

So here it’s showing this video but if we go to another page it doesn’t show up. If we go to that page and add some page specific content now we see something totally different, right? So the Services page has got a video but Custom Home Design Services has got this information instead.

There can be all kinds of reasons why you might do that. Maybe you’ve got contact forms and you want different contact forms on different pages. Well, you could enter your contact form CTA in there and it will display a contact form in this widget area. So there are a world of different possibilities in which you can use that widget.

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