For a few years now, when using WordPress to run our websites or blogs, we’ve had to use plugins or special code to have certain widgets appear only on certain pages. I have used three or four plugins that achieve this functionality.
Each of the plugins has its features and benefits but also its own set of problems. Sometimes they may conflict with other plugins, and in some cases, using the plugin can be quite complicated.
Alas, all that should be a thing of the past now with Widget Visibility since it’s built into Jetpack! Here is what the Widget Visibility description text says about its functionality:
To control visibility, expand the widget and click the Visibility button next to the Save button, and then, choose a set of visibility options.
For example, if you wanted the Archives widget to only appear on category archives and error pages, choose “Show” from the first dropdown and then add two rules: “Page is 404 Error Page” and “Category is All Category Pages.”
You can also hide widgets based on the current page. For example, if you don’t want the Archives widget to appear on search results pages, choose “Hide” and “Page is Search results.”
This is really good news, as you no longer need to use Widget Logic, Display Widgets, Widget Context or other methods to accomplish this level of customization. This plugin is integrated into Jetpack, so as long as you have Jetpack by WordPress.com, you’ll see it as an option in your Jetpack dashboard.
This is particularly useful when you want to customize the display of a widget or two, maybe three on different pages. However, I would still use Custom Sidebars to replace all of the widgets on a specific page, category or post.
Both Jetpack and Custom Sidebars come installed on the free wordpress website installation, but Widget Logic, Display Widgets, and Widget Context won’t be bundled anymore. I believe that Widget Visibility is a fine replacement for those.