Use a Custom Sidebar on a Custom Post Type

I’m working on a site where I’ve created a “Jobs” custom post type (or CPT). I wanted to display a different sidebar on my single job post pages without using a custom post template.

I found my answer after getting a push in the right direction from this post by Travis Smith. I’ll post my solution here if you’d like to use a custom sidebar for your custom post type!

1. Register Your Sidebar


For starters, I registered a sidebar to use on my single job pages. You could put this code in functions.php (or wherever you add your custom code). I’m using the Genesis Extender Plugin (aff link), and dumped the following into my Extender Custom functions area.

Note: If you need a lot of custom sidebars for a site, you might want to use the Genesis Simple Sidebars plugin instead of individually registering each one.

// Register new sidebar
genesis_register_sidebar( array(
	'id' => 'job-single-sidebar',
	'name' => 'Single Job Sidebar',
	'description' => 'This is the sidebar for single job pages.',
) );

Side note for people using the Genesis Extender Plugin:

Genesis Extender Effect Admin

If you’re using Genesis Extender to register your sidebar, be sure you have checked the little box that says “Effect Admin.” That enables the code you enter there to literally affect the WordPress admin area. If you don’t check it, you’ll be banging your head against a wall wondering why your sidebar hasn’t shown up in the widget area. 🙂

2. Call in the Sidebar Conditionally on Your CPT

Here comes the fun part. Go back to the place where you add your custom code and insert the following:

function cd_change_genesis_sidebar() {
    if ( is_singular('jobs')) { // Check if we're on a single post for my CPT called "jobs"
        remove_action( 'genesis_sidebar', 'genesis_do_sidebar' ); //remove the default genesis sidebar
        add_action( 'genesis_sidebar', 'cd_do_sidebar' ); //add an action hook to call the function for my custom sidebar

//Function to output my custom sidebar
function cd_do_sidebar() {
	dynamic_sidebar( 'job-single-sidebar' );

3. The End Result

Since the “jobs” site is still a work in progress, I can’t post a live link. But here are a couple of screen shots to show a regular page with the default sidebar and my single custom post type page with a custom sidebar.

Example of default sidebar
This is a regular page with the default sidebar.
custom sidebar example
Custom post type page for CPT “Jobs” sporting a custom sidebar.

By the way, go ahead and get a little jealous that I’m pulling in post data on the custom sidebar. That’s an example of something easy to do with the WP Types and Views plugins (another aff link, sorry). I’ll save a write-up on using post info outside the loop for another day.

Try it Out

If you’re working with custom post types and want to take this code for a spin, please let me know how it worked for you or if you would recommend any tweaks. Have fun stormin’ the castle!

62 thoughts on “Use a Custom Sidebar on a Custom Post Type”

  1. Thank you Carrie. I’ve tried that though with the same result, so there must be something else going on. I don’t want to take too much of your time, so I’ll continue investigating on my end.

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