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How TO - Clickable Dropdown


Learn how to create a clickable dropdown menu with CSS and JavaScript.


Dropdown

A dropdown menu is a toggleable menu that allows the user to choose one value from a predefined list:


Create a Clickable Dropdown

Create a dropdown menu that appears when the user clicks on a button.

Step 1) Add HTML:

Example

<div class="dropdown">
  <button onclick="myFunction()" class="dropbtn">Dropdown</button>
  <div id="myDropdown" class="dropdown-content">
    <a href="#">Link 1</a>
    <a href="#">Link 2</a>
    <a href="#">Link 3</a>
  </div>
</div>

Example Explained

Use any element to open the dropdown menu, e.g. a <button>, <a> or <p> element.

Use a container element (like <div>) to create the dropdown menu and add the dropdown links inside it.

Wrap a <div> element around the button and the <div> to position the dropdown menu correctly with CSS.


Step 2) Add CSS:

Example

/* Dropdown Button */
.dropbtn {
    background-color: #4CAF50;
    color: white;
    padding: 16px;
    font-size: 16px;
    border: none;
    cursor: pointer;
}

/* Dropdown button on hover & focus */
.dropbtn:hover, .dropbtn:focus {
    background-color: #3e8e41;
}

/* The container <div> - needed to position the dropdown content */
.dropdown {
    position: relative;
    display: inline-block;
}

/* Dropdown Content (Hidden by Default) */
.dropdown-content {
    display: none;
    position: absolute;
    background-color: #f9f9f9;
    min-width: 160px;
    box-shadow: 0px 8px 16px 0px rgba(0,0,0,0.2);
}

/* Links inside the dropdown */
.dropdown-content a {
    color: black;
    padding: 12px 16px;
    text-decoration: none;
    display: block;
}

/* Change color of dropdown links on hover */
.dropdown-content a:hover {background-color: #f1f1f1}

/* Show the dropdown menu (use JS to add this class to the .dropdown-content container when the user clicks on the dropdown button) */
.show {display:block;}

Example Explained

We have styled the dropdown button with a background-color, padding, hover effect, etc.

The .dropdown class use position:relative, which is needed when we want the dropdown content to be placed right below the dropdown button (using position:absolute).

The .dropdown-content class holds the actual dropdown menu. It is hidden by default, and will be displayed on hover (see below). Note the min-width is set to 160px. Feel free to change this. Tip: If you want the width of the dropdown content to be as wide as the dropdown button, set the width to 100% (and overflow:auto to enable scroll on small screens).

Instead of using a border, we have used the box-shadow property to make the dropdown menu look like a "card".


Step 3) Add JavaScript:

Example

/* When the user clicks on the button,
toggle between hiding and showing the dropdown content */
function myFunction() {
    document.getElementById("myDropdown").classList.toggle("show");
}

// Close the dropdown menu if the user clicks outside of it
window.onclick = function(event) {
  if (!event.target.matches('.dropbtn')) {

    var dropdowns = document.getElementsByClassName("dropdown-content");
    var i;
    for (i = 0; i < dropdowns.length; i++) {
      var openDropdown = dropdowns[i];
      if (openDropdown.classList.contains('show')) {
        openDropdown.classList.remove('show');
      }
    }
  }
}
Try it Yourself ??

Dropdown Menu in Navbar

Tip: Go to our CSS Dropdowns Tutorial to learn more about dropdowns.