Site Content and Articles

Websites are essentially collections of text presented in a specific manner to anyone who views the site. As an online store owner, you have a lot of text to maintain and edit on your website.

This guide helps you manage the your store's text by using the Site Content section of your Admin Area.

You can also edit text directly from your storefront while logged in as an administrator. Please see How to Edit Text and Images for more information.

Accessing the Articles

By default, your store is configured with more than 100 different website articles that correspond to everything from information contained on checkout pages to marketing materials. To manage your article content:

Go to Design > Site Content in your Admin Area.

Here you can view, add, or modify articles within your store's database. You can display these articles in different portions of your store, and they can contain text, images, or HTML.

Creating a New Article

There are plenty of articles already configured for use in your store, but you can also create custom articles in a few easy steps:

  1. On the Site Content page, click View List.
  2. Click Add.
  3. Assign a category to the new article, enter the article title, body,  and any other settings needed.
  4. Click Save.
  5. Click View Live near the top of the newly created article to view it as it will appear on your storefront.  

Each website article will have the following settings:

Details

ID This field contains an automatically assigned number to identify each website article by.
PageName Specific articles will be embedded within certain pages on your storefront. In these cases, the page name itself is listed here. Note that this value is only available for certain Website Text articles and cannot be modified.
SpotKey In some cases, multiple articles display on a single page of your storefront. If this is the case, each article is assigned a "SpotKey" to determine which area of the page the article will appear in (for example, "Above the Shopping Cart" or "Below the Shopping Cart"). This field is only available for certain Website Text articles.
Category ID Each article must be assigned to an article category. The category the article is assigned to can be chosen from this menu. This field is required for each Website Text article.
Article Title Define the title of the article here.
Article Caption An optional article caption can be entered here. This caption will display below the article's title.
Article Body The actual article contents can be entered here. The ArticleBody can contain text or HTML.

Search Engine Optimization

This heading contains a number of optional meta tag fields that you can configure to increase the likelihood of the article being successfully browsed, indexed, and categorized by search engines such as Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. Search engine optimization is essentially a marketing practice. The more search engines browse and index the pages of a site, the easier it becomes for visitors to find it in searches.

Meta Tag Title

Enter a title for the article's meta tag title. You'll want to set this field, as it will help the article be referenced by search engines.

Meta Tag Description Enter a brief description of the article which will be referenced by search engines. This will help the article be better-referenced and found by search engines.
Meta Tag Keywords Enter keywords to reference the article by. These keywords will be indexed by search engines. Values entered here can then be used to better search for the article via search engines.
Custom Metatags Override This field is optional overrides all meta data settings for the article and is designed specifically for advanced users with knowledge of SEO techniques and functions.
 

SEO-Friendly URLs

By default, articles viewed on your storefront have dynamic URLs containing an ASP suffix and are appended with the article's ID. For example:

http://www.yourvolusionstore.com/Articles.asp?ID=135

However, if you want articles to have SEO-friendly URLs similar to categories or products, use the following format when you create a link:

http://www.yourvolusionstore.com/article-title_a/135.htm

Article-title is any SEO-friendly tag you want to use and the name of the page is the article ID. There isn't an article field equivalent to Category URL Text (in Categories) or Product URL Text (in Products), so you'll need to use the same tag every time you link to the article.

Article Categories

An additional feature in the Site Content section is the ability to organize your store's articles into categories. As noted, each article must be assigned to a specific category.

Your store comes pre-programmed with a series of website categories. To create your own custom Website Text categories: 

  1. Go to Design > Site Content.
  2. Click View List.
  3. Choose Article Categories from the Filter menu.
  4. Click Add.
  5. Enter values for the Category Name and Category Order.
  6. Choose the Category Type.
  7. Click Save.

Once you've created a new article, you can assign Site Content articles to it.

Help Text

The Help area is a special reserved portion of the Site Content section that contains all Site Content categories that are configured as CategoryType: Help, along with all articles contained within those categories. This special page lets you easily organize all help articles you've set up.

This portion of the Site Content section contains what is essentially the FAQ that displays on your storefront. This can contain information on your return policies, shipping restrictions, or anything you want/need to make customers aware of.

You can view help articles from the Admin Area just as any other article, or from the Help tab in the Site Content section. 

You can create and edit help articles like regular articles, but you must assign any article you set up to a category configured as a help category.  

Note that you can view all active Help articles on your storefront by clicking the Help link in your store's header or footer, depending on your template.

Tips and Special Settings

Note on Viewing All Records

When you initially log in to the Site Content page, you'll see a series of website articles ordered by the categories they're assigned to. Note that this table view of articles will only display certain articles. To view all articles in the Volusion system, click List All Records near the top of the page.

Displaying Articles

To display new articles on your storefront, you can link them to categories that display in your storefront's navigation bar. The following example demonstrates how you can do so.

Example

Your store has a very specific policy for processing returns and you need to link this article to your storefront.

  1. Go to Design > Site Content
  2. Click View List, find the article containing the store return policy, and note the ID number of the article.
  3. Create an SEO-friendly URL using the title and ID number - for example, article-title_a/nnnn.htm, where "article-title" is a concise version of the article title and "nnnn" is the article ID number.*
  4. Go to Inventory > Categories.
  5. Click View List, then click Add.
  6. Set the Category Name to Return Policy.
  7. Set the Parent ID or Parent Category to Main Category.
  8. Select the required menu from this link to appear in from the Show in Menu (previously Category Visible) drop-down menu.
  9. Click the Misc tab under Advanced Settings.
  10. Enter the SEO-friendly URL of the return policy article into the Alternate URL field. 
  11. Click Save

*If you don't want to use SEO-friendly URLs you can use Articles.asp?ID=nnnn

Once this is done, the new category will display in the navigation menu on your storefront. When visitors click on the category link, the Alternate URL setting directs users to the article page instead the actual category page.

Dealing with Spotkeys

Spotkeys and the PageName settings are specifically coded within certain articles within the Volusion system and cannot be modified. New articles cannot have Spotkeys assigned to them, nor can you remove these settings from exiting articles. An articles can, however, be re-purposed by modifying the article's caption, body, or other settings.

Summary

The Site Content section provides a versatile way to create text elements for your storefront without having to keep track of numerous HTML files or crawl through endless lines of code.

Watch the Site Content video series