Using a Custom Menu in a Navigation Bar

This tutorial will show you how to use a custom menu in a top navigation bar on your site. Custom menus give you a high level of control over your navigation. But, you need to be diligent about keeping them up to date, remembering that the links are never added automatically to a custom menu.

Create a Custom Menu

First, you’ll need to create the custom menu. Visit our video tutorial on custom menus to learn how, and then return to this tutorial once you are comfortable with custom menus.

If you already know how to create a custom menu, create it, and then go to take the next step.

Place the Custom Menu in the Menu Bar

Go to “Appearance > Menus” (the screen where you created your menu).

Menu item under Appearance in the sidebar

On that same screen, look at the left-hand side. You will see several drop-down menus that give placeholders for your custom menu. Depending on what you named it, you want to place your custom menu within the “Primary Navigation Menu” area. Pull down the menu labelled “Primary Navigation Menu” and select your custom menu. In this case, the name is “Top Bar.”

Top Bar custom menu selected in primary navigation menu drop-down.

Enable the menu to display

Go to “Genesis > Theme Settings.”

Genesis Theme Settings link on sidebar

Scroll down the page until you see “Secondary Navigation.” Check off the box next to “Enable Secondary Navigation.” Do NOT check off “Enable Fancy Dropdowns.”

Checkbox to enable secondary navigation.

Scroll up to the top of the page and click “Save Settings.”

Save Settings button on Settings page.

Your page should now have top bar navigation using the custom menu you created:

Screen with custom menu in top navigation bar

The above screen depicts a site with a top menu that is based on a custom menu.

That’s it!