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How to Add Topics in WordPress Navigation Menus

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Do you want to learn how to add topics in your WordPress navigation menu?

Often beginners users try to add topics in WordPress menu by creating a separate page for each topic. But that’s not the best way because adding these pages to a menu won’t display the relevant posts.

In this article, we will show you how to properly add topics in WordPress by using categories and tags in WordPress navigation menus.

How to Add Categories and Tags in WordPress Navigation Menus

Why Add Topics in WordPress Navigation Menus?

Let’s say you have a WordPress website that offers travel guides for different cities. You may want to add city names in your navigation menu, so that your visitors see relevant articles when they click the menu item.

Alternatively, if you have a news website like The New York Times or ESPN, you would want to highlight the various topics in the navigation menu.

Example of Topics in Website Menu - ESPN

WordPress makes it quite easy to add topics if you organize your content using categories and tags.

Categories cover your website’s main topics like a table of contents, while tags cover more specific topics like an index. You can learn more by reading our guide on the difference between categories and tags.

Let’s take a look at how you can use categories and tags to organize your content, and then add those topics to your WordPress navigation menu for easy access.

Adding Categories and Tags to WordPress Posts

You can add or select categories while writing your blog posts. The categories box will appear on the right column of the WordPress content editor.

If you need to add a new category, then just click the ‘Add New Category’ link below the list of your existing categories.

For example, on a travel blog, you might create categories for each city you’ve written about, such as ‘Paris’, ‘Amsterdam’, ‘Berlin’, ‘Instanbul’, and ‘London’.

Adding Categories and Tags to a Post

You can also add tags from inside the content editor by simply typing into ‘Tags’ field on the right. When adding more than one tag, you need to separate them with commas.

If you want to choose a tag that you have previously created, then you need to type the first few characters and your matching tags will pop up. Then simply click the tag you want to use.

On a travel blog, you could add tags for the more specific topics covered in a certain post, for example, ‘Food’, ‘Night Life’, ‘Walking Tours’, and ‘Rail Travel’.

Once you have created a few posts and filed them under different categories and tags, you can now add them to your site’s navigation menu.

Adding Categories in WordPress Navigation Menus

To add categories to your navigation menu, simply visit Appearance » Menus and click on the ‘Categories’ tab to expand it.

Visit Appearance » Menus and Expand the Categories Tab

Next, select the categories you want to add to the menu and then click the ‘Add to Menu’ button. Your selected categories will now appear in the right hand column as menu items. You can move them up and down using drag and drop.

Select Categories and Click 'Add to Menu’

Once you are satisfied with the menu, click on the ‘Save Menu’ button to store your changes.

You can now visit your website to see your changes in action.

Preview of Categories Added to Navigation Menu

Adding Tags in WordPress Navigation Menus

To add tags to your navigation menu, you need to visit the Appearance » Menus page. Unlike categories, there isn’t an option to add tags by default.

However, you can add a Tags tab by clicking on ‘Screen Options’ at the top of the screen, and then checking the ‘Tags’ box.

Screen Options on the Menus Page

A Tags tab will now be added to the left hand column. You can click the tab to expand it.

Now you can select the tags you wish to add to the menu. When you click the ‘Add to Menu’ button, your selected tags will appear in the right hand column as menu items and you can rearrange them using drag and drop.

Select Tags and Click 'Add to Menu'

Don’t forget to click the ‘Save Menu’ button to store your settings.

You can now visit your website to see that the tags have been added to your menu.

Preview of Tags Added to Navigation Menu

If you want to create an advanced topics drops menu with multiple columns like ESPN and WPBeginner, then that’s often referred to as mega menu.

You can follow our step-by-step tutorial on how to create a mega menu in WordPress for more details.

WPBeginner blog categories menu

We hope this tutorial helped you learn how to add categories and tags in WordPress navigation menus. You may also want to learn how to create a landing page with WordPress, or check out our list of must have plugins to grow your site.

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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

15 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

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  2. Farrel says

    Hi there. Do you know if the ability to build a Nav Menu using Tags is something that has changed recently? Because I have followed your steps exactly, and Tags is still not an option on my builder… I still only show Pages, Posts, Custom Links, and Categories. Thank you in advance for your help, and sorry in advance also if I’m just really tired and missing something!

    • WPBeginner Support says

      If you have not done so already, we would recommend checking your screen options in the top-right of the page to make sure tags are not unchecked there :)


      • Farrel says

        I was, indeed, just very tired I found it shortly after I left this, but couldn’t delete it because it hadn’t yet posted! Thanks for getting back, and for your patience with me!

  3. Sidartha says

    I Try this in WordPress 4.9.5 and see that have been problems.
    This problems is about the Read More that not work.
    In two installation i have problems, in one is that Read More not show in the page, don´t appear.
    In other installation with template Access Press Store, the default way off the theme show the page with the posts with one Read More button without you have been put it there, the button show automatically but without link the button not open the post simply refresh the page.
    I’m investigate this and don´t exists plugin for fix this because in whatsoever result the same problem repeat if you force and put other inside the text don´t work , don´t show….

  4. katherine moody says

    Just the information I needed in a simple concise format. Thank you. Your site is helping me feel more in control of my WordPress site rather than the other way around.

  5. Nancy says

    I am wanting to create a travel blog, with different trips, entering daily on what we see and do , and putting pics in. I don’t know how to do that yet. When we finish one trip, we will go on another,

  6. Kate Robertson says

    So timely. I was struggling to know the best way to sort the information on my website and this is exactly what I needed to know. Thanks!

  7. Jean-Pierre LaFitte says

    THIS article is VERY helpful. I understand it and I can use it. I made the mistake of creating too many PAGES, now I will rework my site. thanks

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