Do you want to keep your sidebar hidden on your WordPress website’s homepage? The best part of having a sidebar is that it will appear on every page of your website automatically. This allows for you to keep important information visible regardless of a visitor’s location. However, the sidebar may be unnecessary on some pages, like your homepage.
Many web developers spend a lot of time making their homepage look great and showing all the content it needs. The homepage should be the first page someone visits and should contain all of the necessary information, which makes having a sidebar unnecessary. Today, I will demonstrate how to hide your sidebar on your website’s homepage.
Is It Crucial to Hide the Sidebar?
Not at all. Many web developers feel that it is redundant to have a sidebar on the homepage. Typically, a homepage will consist of all the important information on your website like new posts, sitemap, release schedule, navigation menu, and potentially much more. Some of these things may sound familiar because a sidebar is also used to show new posts, sitemaps, and so on.
As you can see, there will most likely be repeated information and that just doesn’t look good. Of course, you may use your homepage or sidebar completely differently, and they will not have similar information. This choice is different for every website because each one is unique.
How to Make the Sidebar Hidden on Your Homepage in WordPress
Today, I will demonstrate how to hide your sidebar on your website’s homepage. You will not need any additional plugins, but you will need access to your website’s cPanel. The login information is provided to you when you create an account with your web host. All you need to do is locate a line of code and replace it with another. You will not need any coding experience to accomplish this task.
Since you will be editing the code on the backend of your website, you should make a backup of your website. A backup will allow you to revert your website back to before a change was made. This will ensure that if a mistake is made, it is not permanent.
Hiding Your Sidebar
Before you begin, it is important to keep in mind that there are multiple index.php files. You should only be editing the one inside of your current theme.
Let’s start by logging into the cPanel and clicking on the File Manager option. The File Manager will allow you to access all of the files related to your website.
You need to locate your theme’s index.php file. Click on the public_html directory, then click on the wp-content folder. Inside of this folder, you will find all of the content related to your website. Click on the themes folder and enter the folder of the theme you are currently using. Finally, right-click on the index.php file and select the Edit option.
A pop-up window will show up. This box will warn you to create a backup of your files before editing anything. This will ensure that you can revert your website back to when it was working if something goes wrong. Click on the «Edit» button. A new tab will open containing all of the code from the file.
The index.php file will not contain a lot of code, which makes finding a line easier. Locate the following line of code:
Highlight this line and replace it with the following lines:
These lines of code will hide the sidebar for visitors on the homepage. If you ever want to make your sidebar reappear, simply repeat this tutorial in reverse. Once you have inserted the code into the index.php file, click on the «Save Changes» button to finish.
Congratulations, you have successfully hidden your website’s sidebar. You can view these changes on your website. You can also choose to do this on otherpages. To do so, you must first learn the conditional tags WordPress uses. These can be found here and are a very good resource to learn how to code in WordPress.
Avoid Redundant Information on Your Website
Many web developers struggle to fit everything on one page, without creating a busy website. One of the best techniques is to remove repeated information. For example, your content release schedule does not need to be on every page, but when you are starting out it may be a good idea to reinforce your schedule.
Finding repeated information takes time and sometimes it is not very easy to decide what gets cut from the page or post. A great rule of thumb is to have a core idea for every page on your website. Then systematically go through the content of the page and see what content needs to be on the page to achieve this idea and remove what is not.
Why do you want to hide your sidebar on your homepage? Are there any other pages you have considered removing the sidebar from?
Author: Robert Giaquinto
Robert has been writing tutorials about WordPress and other CMS for over 3 years since joining the GreenGeeks marketing team. Thanks to this, he has had the opportunity to research and master several areas of WordPress including plugin usage, SEO, website design, and social media integration. When he is not creating content for WordPress, Robert is digging up new content ideas for environmental pieces. These range from the pollution in our air to the danger’s wildlife face. And with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, he is always eager to discuss the way our technologies are affecting the environment, especially when it comes to solar energy.