How to Create a Custom Header and Footer in WordPress (using Elementor)

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In this tutorial I show you how to create a custom header and footer for your WordPress website using Elementor page builder. This tutorial demonstrate how you can achieve this with and without Elementor Pro.

If you do not have Elementor Pro, creating custom header or footer is still possible using free Elementor page builder with another plugin.

Step 1: Install and activate following plugins

You need to install and activate these plugins to be able to create your custom header or footer.

I assume you already installed Elementor plugin, if you haven’t installed Elementor then first install Elementor before moving forward.

Header footer plugin is one must-have plugin if you want to create custom header if you don’t have Elementor Pro.

Here’s how to install Header, Footer elementor plugin

hover on plugins then click add new

Log into your WordPress dashboard.

  1. Hover your cursor on Plugins
  2. Click “Add New”
search and install header footer blocks for elementor

Now search and install the plugin

  1. In search field, type “header footer elementor”
  2. Click “Install Now” to install the plugin
click activate to activate plugin

Activate the plugin by clicking “Activate” button

NavMenu Addon for Elementor plugin

This is the second plugin you need to install and activate before you can start making your custom header or footer.

This plugin adds more widgets such as a menu widget to Elementor widget library which is why you need since nav menu widget is not available in free Elementor plugin.

search and install navmenu addon for elementor plugin

Again, from your “Add new plugin” page, search and install NavMenu Addon for Elementor.

  1. Type in the search “navmenu addon for elementor”
  2. Then click “Install Now” button to begin installing the plugin. Once installation is complete, click “Activate” to activate the plugin.
you should now have 3 plugins

You should now have a total of 3 plugins; Elementor, Header, Footer & blocks for elementor and NavMenu Addon for Elementor.

You should now be ready start making custom headers and footers.

Step 2: Create Custom Header

go to appearance then click on header footer builder

To begin creating a custom header, start by…

  1. Hover on “Appearance”
  2. Click on “Header Footer Builder”
click add new

Click on “Add New” button to create your first header or footer.

In this example I am going to demonstrate how you create a header, however, you can follow similar steps to create a footer.

give header a name then choose header as type of template
  1. Add a title to your header. In this example I’ll just name it “Header” since I am creating a header. I would name it “Footer” if I was creating a footer.
  2. Select a type of Template. Choose Header when creating a header or “Footer” when creating a custom footer.
  3. Edit your header in Elementor by clicking “Edit with Elementor” button. You might wan to first save a draft before clicking edit with Elementor because sometimes the changes you just made have not yet been saved.

Edit Header in Elementor

You should now be ready to start editing your header in Elementor.

start designing your custom header

From the previous step, you should see a blank screen similar to one in the screenshot above.

You can now start creating sections and columns as you wish your header to look like.

use header widgets to create custom header

On top of free Elementor widgets, you should now see a new set of header elements when you scroll to the bottom of widgets on the left panel.

Use these elements to build your header. Here you will find “Branding” which is your site name or logo plus various menu elements which you use to add a menu to your site.

Don’t forget to switch to mobile and tablet view to see and edit how you want your header to look like on small screens.

publish your header

Once you’re done editing your header, click “Publish” button to publish your header.

Your new designed header should now be live across your website replacing the default theme header.

header created in elementor

If you have Elementor Pro, creating custom header or footer is simply a breeze because this feature is already available for Pro users.

Follow these steps to create a custom header.

Step 1: Create a new Header template

hover on templates then click add new

Log into your WordPress dashboard

  1. Hover on “Templates”
  2. Then click on “Add New”
choose header then type header name

The next step is to choose a template type plus giving a template a name.

In this example, I will be creating a header, however, you can follow these steps to create a footer too.

  1. Select template type, I have selected “Header” because I am creating a header.
  2. Type in a template name. I have named mine “Header”
  3. Click “Create template” button.

Edit Header in Elementor

choose from pre-made header templates or exist to create your own

Following the previous action from last step, Elementor gives you an option to use pre-made headers which you can modify to tweak around to suite your style, or create yours completely from scratch.

To create from scratch, close the popup window by clicking an “X” icon on the top right.

header widgets in elementor pro

Now you will notice that unlike free Elementor, you now have header widget elements on the left panel.

You use elements such as Site Logo, Nav Menu, etc to create your header. You still have all the other elements such as social media icons available for use as well.

You also have an option to edit your header on smaller screens such as mobile and tablet to make sure your header is responsive and displays well on all devices.

click to publish header

After you designed and developed your header and you’re ready to publish it, click on “Publish” button. 

add header display condition

Next this is to add some conditions on how you would like your header to display.

Would you like your header to display on just some pages or on the entire website?

choose entire site then save
  1. Select “Entire Site” if you want the header to show on the entire website.
  2. Click “Save and Close” button to finish publishing your header
header done in elementor

Visit your website and now you should have your new header display across the website.

Follow these steps when creating a footer but choose “Footer” as template type.

In Summary

There you have it, creating your custom header or footer in Elementor shouldn’t be difficult. 

You can create custom header with free elementor by:

  1. Install Header, footer for elementor plugin.
  2. Install NavMenu addon for elementor plugin
  3. Create header or footer via Header Footer builder under customize
  4. Design your header or footer in Elementor
  5. Publish
If you have Elementor Pro plugin:
  1. Create new template
  2. Choose header or footer as template type
  3. Design your template or choose from pre-made templates
  4. Set display condition
  5. Publish
Let me know which one worked for you in the comment section below. And if you have questions, let me know in the comments.

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Daniel Emunot

Daniel Emunot

Over 5 years ago, I had no idea on how to use WordPress. Now I professionally build websites for my clients using WordPress. Over the past years I have gained experience and therefore, I spend my spare time writing articles that help beginners skip the Jibber Jabber and quickly start launching websites in the shortest time possible.

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