Managing your website shouldn’t be a chore, which is why we like to keep things clean, simple, and easy-to-use in SilverStripe CMS. Built with teams in mind, the intuitive user interface packs all the functionality you expect in a modern CMS, but doesn’t require a major effort to train new team members. This means your team is more empowered to focus on creating outstanding digital experiences for your users.
Here are ten tips that we think could take your SilverStripe CMS experience to the next level.
Ten tips to master SilverStripe CMS
Add new pages to your website
The typical approach to adding a new page to your website is by clicking the “Add new” button at the top of the site tree. Alternatively, right-clicking on an existing page in the site tree provides some handy actions including adding new child pages.
Add content blocks between other blocks
If you’re using Elemental content blocks, you can add a new block to your page simply by hovering over the space between two existing blocks and then clicking to add a block in that position.
Rotate device previews
SilverStripe CMS includes the option to preview a page on different devices, such as mobile or tablet. Conveniently, the orientation of devices in this preview can be rotated to emulate actual device rotation, simply by clicking "Rotate" in the preview.
Share draft content
Collaborating on website content can be challenging if someone doesn’t have access to your CMS, particularly if they need to review changes before content goes live. The Share Draft Module makes this much easier by providing a private link, allowing you to share an unpublished page with anyone. This functionality is a must-have for content teams.
Paste content as plain text
When copying and pasting content from an application like Word directly into your CMS, any formatting and code that the content has inherited from the application can interfere with your website’s presentation. By using “Paste as Plain Text”, you can strip out any of that unwanted formatting and code from your content. There’s also an option to “Paste from Word”, which retains headers in pasted content.
Use Campaigns to improve content workflow
The traditional use case for Campaigns is grouping content so it can be published all at once, but it can also be a useful workflow tool when it comes to content planning and peer-reviewing. By creating a collection of work within a campaign, content can then easily be reviewed and published at the appropriate time.
Additional features are coming to SilverStripe CMS soon, such as scheduled publishing. You can check out some of the designs we’ve planned for this area here.
Drag and drop
Drag and drop is the new norm when moving files from one location to another, emulating the native app experience we’ve all become accustomed to. In SilverStripe CMS, you can drag and drop blocks to reorder them easily, and drag files directly from your desktop into the interface.
Create custom reports
Keep your team up-to-date with custom reports that are tailored to your organisation’s needs. These reports are designed to help your team avoid breakages on your site and make sure they’re able to make informed decisions about future enhancements.
There are numerous ways that custom reports can support a good routine around website maintenance. It makes for valuable conversation between your content and development teams to ensure that you’re maintaining a performant website. One example is the reports provided by Recipe Reporting Tools, which indicate the availability of upgrades to modules that are used on your site, or highlight any potential security issues.
When you archive content from your website, you can have confidence that it’s never far away. This recent addition to SilverStripe CMS allows your team to easily recover archived content and maintain a healthy audit trail.
CMS help menu
In any software or application, readily available guidance is essential for a positive experience. The SilverStripe CMS help menu includes links to important guidance so that your team can get the most out of the interface. From the help menu, your team can also gain access to the wider SilverStripe community, where they’re able to seek advice from others in a variety of community channels including Slack and the SilverStripe forum.
We’ve also heard from content editors who have tapped into the developer documentation to gain a deeper understanding of SilverStripe CMS, helping them leverage its full capabilities, and have better conversations with developers about features.
Your experience is front-of-mind
We’re continually improving the CMS, and whether you’re a content editor or website administrator, your experience is front-of-mind. If you’re keen to learn more about our user-centred approach to development, SilverStripe Product Owner, Bryn Whyman recently wrote about a new initiative we’re undertaking to eliminate friction points that users experience when performing common tasks in the CMS.
Want to know how SilverStripe CMS works?
We've built a demo that lets you try out a range of our features and modules that SilverStripe CMS has to offer. You can check out the latest version of the CMS right here with a personalised demo.