Spring Forward Web Design
Build your own Site... Control your own Future!
In previous articles, we discussed how to write and post a Joomla article. Just about every Joomla webpage is called an article. However, unless you posted this article on your Front Page, you will not be able to view your article until you make a new Menu Item to link your article to. In other words, for every Joomla web page, you first write and post the article, then you make the new Menu Item for the article. In this section we will show you how to make a new menu item.
If you want to make a new menu item for your existing Joomla website, then log into the Administrator Control Panel for your own website and follow the steps below. If you have not set up your website yet, then go to the Joomla Demo Website (demo.joomla.org).
Then click on Joomla 1.5 See Backend
This brings up the Joomla Administration Login screen:
Type in demo for the Username and the Password. Then click on LOGIN to reach the Joomla Administrator Control Panel.
Whether you are on your own website backend or the DEMO website back yet, the Administrator screen will look like the following:
On the Top Menu, go to the MENUS tab and click on the Main Menu to reach the Menu Item Manager for the Main Menu.
In this article, we will assume that you have created a new article using the Article Manager and you now want to create a new menu item for it.
The first step is to click on the green NEW button in the upper right corner.
This brings up the Menu Item (New) screen:
Then click on ARTICLES. This brings up the Select Menu Item Type screen:
The most common Menu Item type is Article Layout. If you have written a new article and want to create a menu item for it, click on Article Layout.
This brings up the ARTICLE LAYOUT screen:
There are three things you need to do on this screen.
First, in the upper right corner, click on SELECT to go to the Article you want to link your menu item to. Click on this article to select it.
Second, give the new menu item a Title. This should be short, just a few words as the title needs to fit in the menu item box on you menu which is displayed on the front end of your website.
Third, you need to select the PARENT ITEM for your new menu item. If you want your new item to appear in the Main Menu, select TOP. If you want it to appear under another menu item, and then select the menu item you want it to appear under.
When you have finished these three steps, click on SAVE. This will return you to the Menu Item Manager for the Main Menu.
Click on PREVIEW to make sure the Menu Item is appearing and functioning the way you want it. If you want to change the order in which your new item appears in the Main Menu, then go back to the Menu Item Manager for the Main Menu and use the Green ORDER arrows to move the new Menu Item up or down in relation to all the other menu items in the Main Menu.
All of the above steps assume you have already created the menu structure for your website. In the next article, we will review the default menu structure to learn how to avoid common pitfalls when creating menus. In the article after that, we will review how to make a well-organized menu using the same Section and Category system we use to organize our articles. Then we will learn how to add and use an expandable menu system to better control the appearance of our Main Menu.