Manage Main Menu

You can add and move content to the main menu (primary navigation). All menu items in the main menu need a "parent" (top-level) item. For the parent items in the main menu, the main menu itself is the "parent," and any additional items are considered "child pages" (sub-pages) of the parent items. Child pages will show up in a local (sidebar) menu from the parent item.

Main Menu Display

By default, the main menu will display as a simple drop-down. See Figure 1, below. 

Figure 1: Simple drop-down menu display
Screenshot of a simple dropdown menu item expanded

To use the "Mega Menu" option, see Mega Menu (how to enable and set up).

How to Build the Main Menu

Follow these steps for the initial menu assignment of all pages; then, as needed, you can move items by either selecting a different parent item, or simply dragging and dropping items following the steps in the "Reorder and Manage Menu Items" section.

  • Hit "Edit" on an existing page.
  • Check the box labeled "Provide a menu link."
  • Use the "Parent Item" drop-down to determine the item's position in the menu.
  • By default, the "Menu link title" will be the page title. If you'd like the text in the menu to be different (for example, shorter), change it here.
  • When you save the page it will be added to the menu, or moved to a different area of the menu.

See Figure 2, below.

Figure 2: "Provide a menu link" section when editing a page

Unpublished pages do not appear in menus when you view the site as an anonymous visitor.

Unpublish/Remove Menu Items

If a page in the main menu has any child pages, that page cannot be unpublished or removed from the menu until its child pages are removed from the menu. On a parent page with child pages, the "provide a menu link" option will be disabled, and there will be a message under the "Save" button that says "Because this page is part of a menu (or book) and has children, it cannot be unpublished or deleted." See Figure 3, below.

Figure 3: Cannot unpublish or remove parent pages from the menu

To unpublish or remove a parent item from the menu, re-assign the child pages to another parent or remove them from the menu (see "How to Build the Main Menu," above). 

If you don't see any child pages in the menu, but you are still seeing that the parent page can't be unpublished or deleted, that is likely because the child pages are unpublished. See "Child Pages in the Main Menu" below. 

Child Pages in the Main Menu

The "child" pages (sub-pages) in the menu will display by default in a simple drop-down style, as mentioned above. There is also the Mega Menu display.

When someone is on a page that is a child page in a menu, that menu item title will display in italics in the menu (in order to indicate that it's the page the person is currently on). See Figure 4, below.

Figure 4: Child page in menu in italics
Screenshot of a sub-page in a simple dropdown menu to show that selected items show up in italics

By default, the drop-down menu will display only 1 child (the first level of sub-menu). From a general usability standpoint, it can be considered overwhelming for a drop-down menu to display more than 1 child level at a time. If you would like to display additional sub-menu levels, you can change those settings from your Site Builder dashboard (from the "Theme Settings" in "Other Administration"). Under "Main Menu," you can select additional menu levels. See Figure 5, below.

Figure 5: Main menu depth drop-down menu

When a page in the main menu has child pages, a "Child Pages" tab will show up to Site Builders/Editors/Contributors when logged in. See Figure 6, below.

Figure 6: Child pages tab

This "Child Pages" tab shows which pages are child pages of the parent. These child pages can be edited directly from this tab. If child pages are unpublished, the word "unpublished" will show up next to the menu link title in the "Link" column of the table. See Figure 7, below.

Figure 7: Child pages tab with list of child pages