The menu is one of the most important elements of your website. With a tidy and cleverly thought-out navigation you offer your visitors the necessary orientation. Or you can direct them to where you want them to be. We present you five practical menu plugins for WordPress, among others for mobile menus.
The most important elements of a website: Above the fold
What are the elements on any website that immediately catch your eye when you open site ? As a rule, these are the ones that are placed "above the fold". In other words, they are immediately visible on the screen without you having to scroll down.
This includes the logo and the name of site, usually a search function and the first prominently placed blog articles. Or your services or products from the shop. And: the main menu. With WordPress, you already have a relatively large amount of freedom in designing the menu.
In the backend, you can create as many menus as you like under Design -> Menus and use them in various places on your website. For example, in the menu bar at the top, in the footer or via a widget in the sidebar. In this text, we will concentrate primarily on the main menu, as this is where the greatest number of adjustments are usually required.
This is what a menu does plugin
Because: With WordPress you can create these menus and also nest them with different levels, if your WordPress theme allows this. Or (also depending on theme) you can even make entire so-called mega-menus out of them. However, if you need more complex structures or use a theme without an attractive and responsive mobile menu, you will reach your limits at some point.
The solution, as is so often the case with WordPress, is of course plugins. If you search for the term "menu" in the WordPress directory plugin, you will find almost 1,000 hits. However, only a few of these are actual menu plugins, as the word "menu" is very heavily used in the WordPress world.
So before you have to click through the various plugins, we've done it for you. And show you five menu plugins that can make your WordPress navigation better.
Max Mega Menu
- Development: megamenu
- Active installations: over 400,000
- Ratings: 4.5 out of 5 stars from 400 reviews
The WordPress plugin Max Mega Menu is one of the most popular and well-known menu plugins for WordPress. It allows you to turn your menu into a mega menu with just a few clicks, into which you can then insert any WordPress widgets. You can also customise the design of the menu to your website and completely change the menu behaviour.
The latter is important, for example, if your menu should only change to a mobile menu at certain pixel widths (aka screen sizes). Or when it comes to the question of what should happen when you click on a submenu heading. What's impressive about "Max Mega Menu" is that accessibility was thought of right away: The menus can also be operated completely via the keyboard. They follow a logic that makes it possible for people with visual impairments to find their way around the menu via the keyboard and voice controls. A point that is unfortunately often forgotten in similar solutions.
"Max Mega Menu" is based on the standard WordPress menu system. It should therefore be compatible with most WordPress themes. The 400,000 active installations speak for the plugin - as do the 4.5 out of five stars with over 400 reviews in the WordPress directory. If you need even more, you can also activate additional functions via a paid pro version.
WP Mobile Menu - Mobile-Friendly Responsive Menu
- Development: Rui Guerreiro
- Active installations: over 80,000
- Ratings: 5 out of 5 stars with 200 reviews
In 2021, a responsive website should have been standard for 10 years. Unfortunately, this has still not arrived at all developers of themes. And so, even today, a few themes still show usability issues on mobile devices. If you are also affected by this, the plugin WP Mobile Menu can help you (besides changing the theme). The tool allows you to create a mobile menu that your visitors will find visually as well as functionally appealing without any programming knowledge. Some of the features:
- Three menu levels to structure even large menus
- Great flexibility in the design of the menu
- Use of Google Fonts
- Hiding elements when the mobile menu is displayed
With the paid pro version of the plugin (from 77 US dollars per year or from 200 US dollars for a lifetime licence), you can improve the menu even further. For example, a live search, banner spaces (if you have sponsors or advertisers, or in affiliate marketing) and animated icons and elements.
The fact that the plugin runs on over 80,000 WordPress sites shows the still existing problem with mobile menus. With over 200 reviews and top marks, "WP Mobile Menu" is one of the most popular solutions to this challenge.
Responsive Menu - Mobile-Friendly Menu
- Development: ExpressTech
- Active installations: over 100,000
- Ratings: 4.5 out of 5 stars with 300 reviews
A similar plugin is Responsive Menu by ExpressTech. With this plugin you can also create, optimise and design mobile menus if you need to do so on your WordPress websitesite . "Responsive Menu" theoretically promises up to 22,500 different variants with which you can design your mobile menus.
There is also a pro version of this plugin , but at 30 US dollars per year it is considerably cheaper than the "WP Mobile Menu". In addition to the aforementioned options for mobile menus - i.e. on smartphones and tablets - it also offers you the option of adapting the menu for the desktop version of your site . Unfortunately, accessibility, i.e. controlling the menu via keyboard, is also hidden behind the paid version.
"Responsive Menu" even surpasses "WP Mobile Menu" with over 100,000 active installations. The 300 reviews are predominantly positive and give the plugin 4.5 out of five possible stars.
Sticky Menu, Sticky Header on Scroll
- Development: WebFactory Ltd
- Active installations: over 100,000
- Ratings: 5 out of 5 stars with 450 reviews
Sticky" is the term used to describe an element that is still visible when you actually scroll past it. You know this from some advertisements, for example, or from menus on websites. If your users scroll down, the menu remains visible at the top of the screen. Depending on the purpose of the application, this can make sense to save your users from scrolling up if your menu plays a central role in the use of your site .
You can implement such a "sticky menu" with many modern themes or even with a page builder. If this is not possible, you will find a solution at plugin StickyMenu. This allows you to pin your menu bar (and various other elements if you wish) and make it sticky.
However, you should make sure that such a menu really makes sense for you. After all, you want to give your users as much space on their screen for your content or products as possible. A menu bar can take up 80-150 pixels of the screen and can therefore quickly become annoying.
The plugin is easy to use and runs on 100,000 WordPress installations. According to the 450 positive reviews, it works very well overall.
WordPress Mega Menu - QuadMenu
- Development: Mega Menu
- Active installations: over 20,000
- Ratings: 4.5 out of 5 stars with 200 reviews
Somewhat less known than "Max Mega Menu" is the plugin WordPress Mega Menu. It does exactly what the name promises: build a mega menu in WordPress. This can then be visually adapted to the look and feel of the website, is widget-ready and can be easily created using drag-and-drop. In addition, there are already demos for the most important WordPress frameworks and themes, for example for Divi, Avada or OceanWP.
On the positive side, developershas already given plugina lot of functions in the free version. Unfortunately, they have hidden simple basics behind the paid pro version - for example, the option for social menus. After all, the pro version only costs 15 US dollars for a single licence.
"WordPress Mega Menu" gets 4.5 out of five stars with 200 ratings from over 20,000 active installations, making it an alternative to "Max Mega Menu".
Conclusion: Menu plugins can make your website better
From this list, you can see that even elementary areas of any WordPress website can be improved and optimised with plugins. As always, the following applies to menu plugins for WordPress: Only use plugins if they are really important and necessary, as each additional plugin makes your website heavier and more complex. However, if you build your site around the navigation, you will find enough extensions in the plugin directory of WordPress to help you.
Before installing, however, be aware that many menu plug-ins rely on a freemium model. This means that you receive a free basic version, which you can then expand with paid pro versions if required. Here it is worth comparingplugin , as one plugin only offers your desired function for a fee, while another may already offer this function free of charge in the basic version. Then nothing should stand in the way of your desired menu.