WordPress Custom Menus allow us to customize our site navigation area(s) with drag-and-drop ease and plenty of customization options.
But there’s a gap in the usability department — cloning an existing menu.
Having the ability to “copy and paste” WordPress menus is smart for several reasons:
- Make a backup copy before adding customizations
- Use slightly different menus (maybe off by just one navigation item) for different pages or theme areas
- Create several versions of a base menu to test and see which version you like best
How To Duplicate an Existing WordPress Menu
The appropriately named Duplicate Menu plugin is simple and straight-forward.
You select an existing menu from the drop down box and give the new menu a unique name.
Then you go back to your list of WordPress menus and the new menu is there, with the same order, hierarchy, and customizations as the one you duplicated… just like you’d expect. That’s great usability.
Here’s a walk-through of duplicating an existing menu:
There’s not much to the Duplicate Menu plugin, but there are some things to keep in mind to get the most out of it:
- WordPress menus are sorted alphabetically. So if you have MenuD and MenuX and duplicate MenuX as MenuB, then your list of menus will read MenuB, MenuD, MenuX. So provide your duplicated menu with an alpha-order name that is also descriptive.
- You can see this in action from the screenshots above.
- Instead of naming the new menu “Copy of MenuX“, “MenuX Copy” would be better because of the alpha-order.
- The plugin won’t let you name a duplicate menu the same as an existing menu. It will just error out. It will not overwrite the pre-existing menu. Just make sure to give each newly-created menu a unique name.
- This plugin doesn’t include an “export to new website” option. It’s only for copying menus “next to each other” (i.e. within the same site).
Duplicate Original stamp image by woodlywonderworks