Your site’s navigation plays a critical role in the user experience (UX). While a lot of attention is often paid to the site header, you don’t want to overlook another important area: the WordPress footer.
There’s nothing necessarily wrong with the default footer in WordPress. However, there are a plethora of ways to improve it. Plus, there are easy steps you can take to personalize and change it to benefit your site and brand.
In this post, we’ll discuss the benefits of changing the default footer in WordPress and some methods you can use to do so. Then we’ll provide you with three ways to customize your WordPress footer to maximize its value. Let’s get started!
Why Customize Your WordPress Footer?
When it comes to the design of your website, it’s essential to make the most of each and every element. This doesn’t only pertain to the content ‘above the fold’, either.
Your WordPress footer typically appears on every page of your website. Therefore, optimizing this section of your site can help you:
- Improve the overall design and aesthetic of your site
- Enhance its usability
- Boost engagement and conversions
When a visitor scrolls to the bottom of the page, the footer can direct them to other content and pages on your site. It can be a place to find useful information or CTAs that encourage them to take action, such as signing up for a newsletter or filling out a contact form.
The WordPress footer is in a prime real estate area, so you should use it strategically. If you’ve never edited your footer before, don’t worry; there are multiple ways to go about it depending on what you’re trying to achieve and your level of experience.
Methods You Can Use to Customize Your WordPress Footer
There are a handful of solutions you can use to customize your WordPress footer. The method you use will depend largely on the type of edit you’re looking to make.
For a simple change, such as removing or editing the footer text or copyright, you can use the Theme Customizer (Appearance > Customize):
You can also change the default footer from the Widgets area (Appearance > Widgets):
If you don’t have access to the Customizer or the widget area is too limiting, you can use a plugin or edit your theme files. We only recommend the latter if you’re comfortable working with code and want more control over your customizations.
After creating a child theme, you can typically find the code to edit in your theme’s footer.php file, located in the Theme Editor (Appearance > Theme Editor):
However, there are plenty of plugins you can use to customize your WordPress footer without touching a line of code. This is a solid method if you’re looking for a quick, beginner-friendly solution.
3 Ways to Customize Your WordPress Footer
Now that you understand some of the benefits of customizing the WordPress footer, and the methods you can use, it’s time to get to work. Let’s take a look at three ways to customize your WordPress footer.
1. Remove or Replace the Copyright and Credit Text
Let’s start with one of the most common and easiest ways to customize your WordPress footer, which is to delete or change the footer text. By default, WordPress themes will include “Powered by WordPress” (or the name of the theme you’re using) in the footer:
There’s nothing necessarily wrong with leaving that text as-is. However, as much as it’s not doing much to hurt your site, it’s not doing much to help it, either.
Why not use this space for your own company information, rather than WordPress’ or the theme developers? Plus, it’s completely legal and easy to modify the footer text.
You can do this using any of the methods we mentioned in the previous section. For example, you can directly edit the footer.php file of your WordPress theme via Theme Editor (Appearance > Theme Editor > Theme Footer):
You can also go through the Theme Customizer. Depending on your theme, you may have a dedicated section(s) for the footer settings:
Another option is to use a plugin such as Remove Footer Credit:
This free plugin lets you quickly input the text you want to remove. Additionally, it offers a section where you can add new content to customize your WordPress footer. Once activated, you can locate it under Tools > Remove Footer Credit:
This is a powerful option if you don’t want to mess with your files. It’s also helpful when you are using a theme that doesn’t offer access to the Theme Customizer.
2. Add Calls To Action (CTAs) and Links to Important Information Resources
As we mentioned earlier, because the footer often remains visible no matter what page on your site a visitor is on, it can be a critical tool for your site navigation. Therefore, another way you can customize your WordPress footer is by adding CTAs and links to pages you want to promote.
This could mean adding a contact or sign-up form to build email subscribers. You can also use it as a secondary directory where users can find pages and links that weren’t immediately available in your primary navigation. For example:
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- ‘About Us’ and company background pages
- Affiliate Programs
- Knowledge Bases
Many themes let you can add columns within the footer. This is helpful if you have multiple sets of links you want to include. However, if your theme doesn’t, or you want to expand on its features, you can also use a plugin such as Footer Mega Grid Columns:
This free plugin is compatible with most themes and allows you to add a footer widget area to your theme and display a mega menu with a grid view of columns. This is particularly useful for sites that have a lot of pages, such as eCommerce sites, and want to expand it beyond the default one or two columns WordPress offers.
3. Display Social Media Feeds or Related Content
Another way to enhance and customize your WordPress footer is by adding social media feeds and other related-content aggregators in the section. That way, when people scroll to the bottom of a page, they have quick access to other channels or content you’re looking to promote.
The plugin you use for this depends on the type of content you want to include in your footer. For example, if you want to add an Instagram feed to your WordPress footer, you can use our recently launched Spotlight plugin:
This plugin lets you quickly add Instagram feeds virtually anywhere on your WordPress site, including the footer. In addition to making the footer more visually appealing, it can help drive engagement and followers for cross-channel promotions and campaigns.
After you install and activate the plugin, simply follow the prompt to connect it to your Instagram account. Then you can customize the design of the feed and embed it anywhere on your WordPress site, including the footer via the Spotlight widget:
Another option is to use the WP RSS Aggregator plugin:
This is the number one WordPress RSS plugin. You can use it to display a wide variety of content in your footer, including unlimited content from an unlimited number of sites!
Once you install and activate the plugin, you can design and personalize the display templates, then use them to customize your WordPress footer. In addition to shipping with its own Gutenberg block, this plugin also has a built-in shortcode system, making it easy to add to the footer.
When used correctly, the footer section of your WordPress site can be an important and prominent area that helps maximize engagement and improves the UX. There are also a variety of methods you can use to enhance it.
As we discussed in this post, three ways you can customize your WordPress footer include:
- Remove or replace the WordPress copyright and credit text in the footer with your own company details and branding. You can do this with a plugin such as Remove Footer Credit or through the WordPress Editor.
- Add footer menus and links to important resources, such as affiliate programs, company information, and FAQs, with plugins such as Footer Mega Grid Columns.
- Use plugins such as Spotlight and WP RSS Aggregator to display social media feeds and related-content that drives engagement.
Do you have any questions about changing your WordPress footer? Let us know in the comments section below!