Best Practices Using the Page Designer
We know you want to get started as quickly as possible by creating the pages that will make up your website. But before you start, we strongly suggest reading through (or glancing at) this section. It provides insight and some tricks that will make editing your site easier. Once familiar with the ShoutCMS environment, you can come back to review the documentation when faced with specific editing tasks.
A Note About BrowsersWhile all current browsers run HTML5, browsers behave differently when presenting the same web site. This is true for all websites on the Internet. You may notice minor differences when your browser displays the ShoutCMS console, we cannot control browser functionality, but we work diligently to maintain compatibility with new browser versions. We regularly test ShoutCMS for browser compatibility.
Using Multiple Browser WindowsShoutCMS is designed to be used in multiple windows at the same time. Use one window to open the Administrator Console; open additional windows to view your site after a change has been made. This technique saves considerable time when making minor changes to a page. Edit and save the page in one window, go to the other window and refresh the content – the edits will be displayed, repeat the process as required. You can edit you site concurrently in multiple windows but editing the same page in two places will result in lost changes.
Note: Use a different browser when testing content that depends on specific security settings. For example, run the Administrator Console in Firefox while testing the site in Internet Explorer. Explorer will not recognize that you are logged from your Firefox session. You can test anonymous behaviour of your site while modifying your site in Firefox.
Making a Change While Browsing Through Your Site
You can modify pages as you navigate through your site provided that you have previously logged on with your Site Administrator. You can start this process by clicking on the View button on the Page Designer and then continuing to navigate through your site.
When navigating through your site, after you have logged in as a Site Administrator, the Edit Page Toolbar is displayed at the top of each page as you navigate through the site. You can click on “Modify” to open the Administration Console to make changes to the page. You can also access the Site Theme Picker from the Edit Page toolbar – located on the left side of the Edit Page toolbar.
Develop Your Landing Pages FirstBy now, you should have a navigation model (spider chart) for your new site. We recommend creating “Landing Pages” first. These pages should be designed as permanent fixtures of your website - users will typically bookmark these pages when they return. Landing Pages can also be referenced in printed and distributed materials (emails). Define your landing pages and be sure your designers know that renaming these pages may have negative effects on search engines and hinder returning customers.
Design Responsive ContentShoutCMS automatically presents responsive content on smaller screens including tablets and smart phones. Although ShoutCMS supports responsive content, the content itself should be designed for responsive layouts if you expect heavy use on mobile devices. If this is the case, avoid creating tables and embedding large images in the WYSIWYG editor. ShoutCMS will automatically re-size other images including Carousel, Gallery, and Feature images.
Linking Internal ContentThere are two ways to link internal content (e.g. another page of your site). The preferred way is to embed the internal page number rather than the page name. This is easy to do from the file image manager by selecting “Page on this site” (1) and selecting the page from the Site-tree (2). The embedded link (3) will look like “content.php?id=XXX” where XXX is the page number that you linked. Clicking on "Insert" (4) will complete the procedure.
Linking pages in this way eliminates the risk of creating a broken link if you change the name or URL of the page that is linked. Unfortunately, this cannot be done for external content. External content must be embedded as a link by copying the desired URL to the URL field. Select New Window when you want the link to be opened in a new Browser tab.
Page ControlsThe Page Designer uses several fields to control display options and how the page is connected to the Site-tree. These fields include: Title, Feature Image, Featured Summary, Placement, Access Security, and Hidden/Live. Understanding how Pages controls work is critical to connecting web pages to the Site-tree.
The Title is displayed in the Site-tree and as the Title on the Featured Content, The Featured image and Summary are displayed on pages that display this page as a feature, Placement defines where the page is placed on the Site-tree and menus. Live/Hidden determines whether the page is shown on the site’s menu system. Access Security, if enabled requires the user to have logged in before they can view the page or its Featured Summary (You should define your security model before securing any pages from public access).