Whether or not to have a sidebar in a WordPress site is a million dollar debate. With Core Web Vitals, AMP, and other speed improvements, the sidebar is losing a different reputation than its earlier days. The default WordPress theme doesn’t even come with a sidebar option. However, sidebar widgets are the most powerful way to use them as a call to action.

Also, setting the last widget as floating pinned can skyrocket your CTR. In this article, we will explain how to add floating fixed sidebar widget in WordPress.

How to Add WordPress Sidebar Floating Fixed Widgets?

Complete site editor and widgets


Before trying to rely entirely on sidebar widgets, be aware of the latest trends in WordPress development. Complete site editing is here, and it completely changes the way you use your sidebars and widgets. Currently, you can see the widgets section under the Appearance menu to use blocks similar to the Gutenberg block editor interface.

If you tried the WordPress theme 2022, there will be no widget area. All you can do is create a page from a template section without a sidebar. If you’re still stuck with the old classic editor or any other page builder plugin, then you should switch to Gutenberg and be prepared for this change. However, many commercial themes still offer a sidebar layout as one of the options, and you can continue to use the sidebar widgets for those themes.

How can pinning gadgets help you?


When the user continues to scroll down the page, the pinned widget will appear as a pinned area. Since the pinned gadget is visible most of the reading time, you can use it in the following ways:

Display popular content on your website to increase traffic.
Show ads that make you more money. Keep in mind that some ad programs (such as Google AdSense) do not allow you to use sticky gadgets. If you’re an AdSense publisher, you can use anchor ads on mobile and desktop as part of the Auto Ads setup.
Display affiliate coupons or deals so users can buy through your link and you can earn money from affiliate commissions.
Sell ​​a popular eBook from your own store or Amazon and try to convert clicks into potential revenue.
Display a countdown timer to drive user action, such as buying a product for a limited time.
The possibilities are endless, and you’ll clearly see the impact when using pinned gadgets compared to regular gadgets.

Adding Floating Fixed Sidebar Widgets in WordPress
There are multiple ways to add floating pinned widgets to your WordPress sidebar. If you are a super geek, you can try your own CSS and set a fixed position for the last widget on the sidebar. But let’s focus on the off-the-shelf solutions the average user is looking for.

How to Add WordPress Sidebar Floating Fixed Widgets?
  1. Fixed Widgets and Fixed Elements for WordPress
    This is the most common option for WordPress bloggers because it is very easy to implement. Earlier it was called Q2W3 Fixed Widget, it was then taken over by Advanced Ads and actively maintained in the plugin repository. Go to the “Plugins > Install Plugins” section in the WordPress admin panel and search for “fixed widget”. You can find the “Fixed Widgets and Sticky Elements for WordPress” plugin and install it on your website.

After activating the plugin, go to the Appearance > Fixed Widget Options section. Here you can adjust the plugin’s settings such as margins and where to stop the float by providing a Stop ID. Usually, you don’t need to make any changes here and keep the settings the same. If you find that the widget hits the top or bottom of the screen when scrolling, increase the margin top/bottom size to provide enough clearance.

Now, go to the Appearance > Gadgets section and you can see an extra checkbox option below each gadget. If you’re using the classic widget area, you can enable the “Pinned widgets” checkbox for items that you want to appear as sticky floats.

Save the gadget and check your live site if the gadget is sticky when scrolling content. For example, we add the search widget as the first item and make it a pinned widget. When you scroll through the page content on a published website, it will look like this (check the search box at the top of the sidebar).

We recommend using a floating pinned widget for the last item in the sidebar so it doesn’t affect the user experience by avoiding overlapping elements. If you are using a Gutenberg widget block, all added blocks in the widget area will have the “Fixed Widget” option as shown below.

  1. Fixed the theme of floating widgets
    Many magazine themes on the WordPress market like themeforest offer built-in options for adding pinned widgets. For example, you can pin gadgets in the most popular newspaper themes. You can select options in the theme panel without installing additional plugins. However, you will have problems switching themes and you will end up searching for plugins for this purpose. Therefore, the lightweight Q2F3 gadget is a good choice, unless you plan to use a magazine-style theme for the long term.
  2. AdSense and other advertising partners
    As mentioned earlier, Google AdSense does not allow floating pinned gadgets in the sidebar. Anchor ads will display a floating banner at the top or bottom on mobile and desktop. If your main focus is to make money from online content, then you need to try any other display advertising program that allows sticky sidebar ads. Check out the AdSense alternative programs and apply for the one that suits your traffic and layout.

You can also apply for a program with a Google Certified Advertising Partner such as AdThrive, Mediavine or Ezoic. These ad agencies can help you get Google AdX approval and allow you to use fixed sidebar ads. Likewise, you can try a marketplace like BuySellAds to easily get approved and use sticky ads on your sidebar. If you are a member of any such program, ask them to create a floating gadget for you. They can create an ad unit that is only displayed on the desktop port view. This can multiply your revenue with other ad technologies like ad rotation and anti-ad blocking.

Summary


As you can see, there are multiple options to add floating pinned widgets in the WordPress sidebar. However, the solution depends on your purpose and the current setup you are using. The easiest way is to use the pinned widget WordPress plugin that works seamlessly with any theme. You can test how the pinned widget works for you and measure the performance of your call-to-action to determine whether to keep floating pinned options.

Whether or not to have a sidebar in a WordPress site is a million dollar debate. With Core Web Vitals, AMP, and other speed improvements, the sidebar is losing a different reputation than its earlier days. The default WordPress theme doesn’t even come with a sidebar option. However, sidebar widgets are the most powerful way to use them as a call to action.

Also, setting the last widget as floating pinned can skyrocket your CTR. In this article, we will explain how to add floating fixed sidebar widget in WordPress.

Complete site editor and widgets
Before trying to rely entirely on sidebar widgets, be aware of the latest trends in WordPress development. Complete site editing is here, and it completely changes the way you use your sidebars and widgets. Currently, you can see the widgets section under the Appearance menu to use blocks similar to the Gutenberg block editor interface.

If you tried the WordPress theme 2022, there will be no widget area. All you can do is create a page from a template section without a sidebar. If you’re still stuck with the old classic editor or any other page builder plugin, then you should switch to Gutenberg and be prepared for this change. However, many commercial themes still offer a sidebar layout as one of the options, and you can continue to use the sidebar widgets for those themes.

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