The Secret Of Hiding Links From Your Website

So you want to create a landing page, but you're not sure how to add modules to it and keep it off of your site's visible menus? It all comes down to a trick we call creating a hidden menu.

For the most part, Joomla! is very easy software to use.  However, the one stumbling block for users always seems to be menus. Why, when you create a new page, can you not just access it by it's alias? In other words, if you create an article called "See Spot Run" and it creates an alias called "see-spot-run," why is that not enough to get your URL www.yourwebsite.com/see-spot-run  to work and to have all of your modules attach?

Menus Drive Everything in Joomla!

Once you understand this critical statement, it will greatly improve your quality of life as a Joomla! administrator.  The only way to get modules to show up on your page is to either assign the module to "all" pages, or you have to assign the modules to menu items...you cannot assign modules to individual articles (I know, mind blown!). And those nifty URL's don't come from the article alias (unless it's in a Category Blog...a discussion for another time) but instead, those also come from menu items.

So, how do you take that nice article you wrote and get the modules to attach to it and get that nice URL?  Well, you attach it to a menu.

But that isn't always convenient.  Here are some reasons you may not want your current menu cluttered up with this article:

  • Your website menu bar doesn't have enough space for another link.
  • You are creating a landing page for an advertising campaign and this page shouldn't be accessible to everyone.
  • You're creating a Thank You page.

Never fear. We have a workaround.

Create a Menu Called Hidden Menu

If you're a Hannush Web client, you'll probably already see this under Menus (if you do, skip this section). However, if you've had someone else build your site or you built it, then you will have to create this. It's very simple.

1) Go to Menus > Manage.

2) Click the green "New" button.

3) Fill in the Title* with "Hidden Menu" and the Menu Type* with "Hidden Menu." then Save and Close.

hidden menu creation

That's it.  Now, if you've completed your article, you can attach it to the hidden menu.

Create a Hidden Menu Item for Your Article

Note: In Joomla! 3.7, there will be a simplification of this process by allowing you to directly link your article to a menu from within the article. 

So, how do you get that nice URL you need and attach the modules you want to this article?

1) Go to Menus > Hidden Menu.

2) Click on the green "New" button. You are about to create a menu item.

3) Fill in your Menu Title* (give it a name you'll remember or one that will work if you ever move this to a text menu link on your site). In this case, we'll call it Landing Page. You can also customize your Alias (URL) right here.

create joomla hidden menu item

4) Click "Select" on your Menu Item Type* and then choose Article > Single Article

select single article

5) Click on the gray "Select" button next to "Select an Article" and choose the article you want the menu item to link to.

6) Click "Save and Close."

Your hidden menu item is now created and you can access it by using the alias (ie www.yourwebsite.com/alias-name)

Now, you can attach modules to it by going to Extensions > Modules and clicking on the module you want to assign to that page. Just go under the "Menu Assignment" tab and choose the page name from under Hidden Menu.

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