Seven Quick SDL Tridion Experience Manager Tips

Some quick "good design" considerations for setting up Experience Manager page and content types (that also apply to schemas and templates in general). Offer good defaults with flexibility and build much of the decisions into the system itself.

  1. Offer clear, select-able options. Use brief, business friendly-names like "home," or "article." Users don't need to know they're templates, not in the context of selecting them.
  2. Be visually clear. Use icons (very cool feature), but 48 pixels and smaller can be kind of small. Use wireframes, maybe some color, or even text to make it clear what each item is (good tips from colleague Hao).
  3. Offer good defaults. In content types, add practical descriptions and use good default text. Make it clear what the Lorem Ipsum parts are.
  4. Reduce options. Reduce the number of available types where possible, similar to hiding schemas and template options from certain authors.
  5. Prevent mistakes. Remove the Default Template options. Authors may assume you want them to use them. Add default settings when required.
  6. Encourage ownership. Have the business own these naming conventions, settings, images, and descriptions. Descriptions probably shouldn't match schema names.
  7. Try it. Finally, try creating or editing content with your setup. Or better yet, have your colleague or an author try it out, preferably before all-hands training.
Got some nice examples or gotchas when working with Experience Manager to share?

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