Some or all of your widgets have disappeared from your site footer or sidebar.
Code inside text widgets or custom widgets provided by a plugin may cause an error during a WordPress update that keeps the widgets from being restored when the update is complete.
Please contact support to report this issue and include the following:
- Were all widgets lost or only some?
- Which widgets were lost?
- Do you know when the widgets vanished? Close to exact time as possible.
- Right before they vanished, did you make any changes to the site such as updating plugins, adding/removing plugins, editing the pages or posts?
- How many times on this site have the widgets vanished that you are aware of?
- Have you already added the widget back to the site?
Restoring your widgets is only possible if you had made a widget backup file. See How to Export or Backup Your Site Content for how to make one in the event this happens again.
Step 1: Setup Your Widgets again
Unless you have a backup of your widget data, you will need to reset your widgets. You may also restore the default widgets for your theme under the theme's demo import option by selecting just the Widget option in the Import Type.
Please do not perform a full restore of your site to a previous date as this can revert your WordPress version or other updates and cause bigger problems.
Avoiding the issue in the future:
Do not add scripts to text widgets, and avoid using visual composer or other builder shortcodes in the text widget if possible. Instead, use the available widgets or a plugin that provides the widget content you need. See the following for examples of how to recreate specific footer content using the Image widget, text widget and a social icons widget instead of custom code:
Step 2: Backup your Widget Data
You can backup your widget data using the Widget Importer and Exporter plugin which you may search for and install free under the Plugins page of your admin. Once activated, click on Tools > Widget Importer and Exporter to create an export file. Save it in a safe place so you can restore it again in the future if needed.
Step 3: Ensure your theme and plugins are up to date
These kind of issues are most commonly caused by outdated plugins and code conflicts. Ensure your theme is updated as soon as you get a notification the update is available, and run any public plugin updates prompted under your Plugins page. Note that bundled plugins like Visual Composer, Revolution Slider and LayerSlider get updated after your theme is updated. If you believe you are having issues with bundled plugin updates, let us know, or view our theme update guide here.