How to add new side menus in Joomla – a beginners guide


One of the most common admin job of a joomla developer is to add new sideboxes. It is an easy boring job that takes quite bit of time and more boring if you have a slow connection as I have.

Following are the steps you need to follow to setup a new side menu:
  1. Go to Admin >> Menu Manager, click New from the top right buttons
  2. Fill up the fields:
    1. Unique Name (name containing no space character and in small latters)
    2. Title: A title to identify the menu in menu manager (wont be shown in front end)
    3. Description (optional)
    4. Module Title (this is the title that’ll be displaye in front end.
  3. Click save and your sidemenu is created
  4. Now find the side menu from the menu list and click the “Menu Item(s)” icon next to it.
  5. In the Menu Item Manager page, click “New” button on right top corner to add a new menu item in the side box
  6. In the next step you’ll be given a list of menu types. For example, Select “Articles”
  7. In the next step you’ll be given different type of article layout, for example select “Article Layout”
  8. Now, enter the following fields
    1. Title: The title of the menu that’ll be displayed in the sidebox
    2. Alias:[optional] the seo name of the link. If left blank, it’ll make it from the title, replacing all the spaces by – (dashes)
    3. Click the Select Article button to select which article you want to show.(This option wont be here if you do not select articles as menu type.)
    4. Select the article from the list and click save.
  9. Repeat step 5 to 8 to create as many menu items as you want. So now you have created the side menu with one article but it will not be displayed in the front end yet. You have to enable it.
  10. Go to Extensions >> Module Manager
  11. Find the menu from the list of modules. Search the menu by searching by title, and/or select the menu type to mod_mainmenu. When you find your menu, click on it to edit.
  12. You’ll see the Enabled filed is set to “No”. So click “Yes”
  13. Next important thing, “Menu Assignment“. If you want to show the sidebox all over the site, do nothing. If you do not want to show the box all over the site, select the links you want to show the sidebox. First select “Select Menu Item(s) from the List” option and then select the menus you want the sidebox to be displayed. Press the control key to select multiple menus.

That’s all. If you do not find your sidebox yet, ask me :-)

  1. #1 by Kecia on June 7, 2010 - 9:55 pm

    These are the best instructions I have found on steps to follow in Joomla!!!! Thank you!

  2. #2 by Imran on June 8, 2010 - 12:45 am

    That is a great inspiration Kecia :-)
    Thank you.

  3. #3 by Mohammed Morsi on October 2, 2010 - 2:34 pm

    thanks that’s really great article
    but how to make it drop down menu ??

  4. #4 by ichakhy on November 20, 2012 - 1:46 pm

    hey, this is an old post.. but can still ask u? Please..
    I’m using gavickpro Financial Business template now for my website. And i want to add side menu for each main menu. I did wht u told us above but it doesn’t work.. can u tell me another way to do it..??

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