Table of Contents

Overview

URL is an address on your website that you can go to, such as /news or /sports/local/high_school, etc. 

Settings / URLs is where you create, edit, and delete URLs for your site. You can also manage custom properties for your URLs here.

You can, and most often do, have a corresponding section tag for each URL, and vice versa, but you do not need to. This is possible because the block on a page uses Query rules to pull content from a section. For more information see What query rules are available for Blocks?.

Managing URLs

Accessing URLs

From the dropdown in the the upper left choose Settings / URLs (Not sure how to access BLOX Applications? Click here).

This will bring up the Manage URL maps window.

You should see a Map in the main window; flex or flexsystem for Flex websites, default for Zen sites. If your site has been redesigned the map may have a different name. If your site is currently being redesigned you may see multiple maps. If there are multiple maps the map that is in Bold is the one that is being used by your Live Site. You can add a New Map to your site by following the Add a Map instructions.

The first name in the list (flex, flexsystem, default, etc) is the homepage of your site. Clicking the + icon to the left of the name will open the Map to show the sub URLs. There can be multiple levels of URLs on your site. 

Create a New URL

Right click on the URL which you want to add a sub URL under; if you want a new URL below the homepage, you would right click flex, flexsystem, default, etc at the top of the page. If you wanted to create news/local, you would right click news.

Click New URL.

In the Edit URL window:

4a  Parent URL is not editable. This is the name of the URL you right clicked on, which the New URL will be under.

4b  Name will be the path of the URL. This name should be lowercase, with underscores (_) or hypens (-). Do not use spaces, capital letters, punctuation or special characters in your path as these are not web friendly. Example: arts_and_entertainment.

Display Options:

Flex - When used with the Utility: Page Heading block, this text will display on the index page, OR, if you want the name on the header of the page to have punctuation or spaces you can add a custom name on Page Properties / Page Title.

Zen - This text will display on the index page automatically, OR, if you want the name on the header of the page to have punctuation or spaces you can add a custom name on Page Properties / Page Title. To hide the header you will need to use CSS.

4c  Redirect URL is used to automatically redirect the URL to another address, either on your site or on another site. If linking to another site you must use a fully qualified path. Ex: if the URL on your site is white_house, but the page should actually redirect to WhiteHouse.gov website whenever someone goes to /white_house, put http://whitehouse.gov in the Redirect URL.

If you are redirecting to another page on your own site, you may use a relative path, that has a trailing slash ( / ) at the end of the section name. Ex: Redirect URL: newsectionname/

Applications and Application Skins

An Application is the function that you are creating the asset in, such as Editorial / Assets, Marketplace / Businesses, Community / Calendar, etc. Each Application has it's own Application skin; a collection of templates, blocks, and other supporting files that create the look and feel the reader sees on the front end.

4d  Inherit Skin From Parent URL - If this URL will use the same skins as the parent URL, then click on this Radio Button.

Note:  The URL directly above the Sub URL you are setting up/working with, then it is the Parent URL.  Example: If the page (URL) was letters_to_editor located under the URL opinion and you checked this box, then the letters_to_editor page (URL) would use the same skins as the opinion page. If the parent URL is the main front page, then your new URL would use the same skin as the top level URL of your site.

4e  Set URL's Own Skin - If this URL will NOT use the same skins as the parent URL, select this option to set a different skin:

Click the radio button

Click Change. This will open the Select a Skin window.

Uncheck the Applications to narrow the search.

Type a full or partial keyword, and click Search.

Or manually scroll through the list of Application Skins that are available.

Click on the name of the Application Skin you want to use, and click Select.

The Edit URL window now shows the Skin that will be applied to this URL.

4f  Save Changes:  At this point if you click Save Changes, the Edit URL window will save and close. You can reopen the URL and continue to edit as you wish by finding the name of the new URL in the list in Manage URL Maps, and double clicking on the name.

Page Properties

 Optional fields available:

5a  Page Title - Text that can be displayed on the section page on the front end of your site.

Display Options:

Flex - When used with the Utility: Page Heading block this text will display on the index page, OR, if you want the name on the header of the page to have punctuation or spaces you can add a custom name on Page Properties / Page Title.

Zen - This text will display on the index page automatically, OR, if you want the name on the header of the page to have punctuation or spaces you can add a custom name on Page Properties / Page Title. To hide the header you will need to use CSS.

5b  Label - Text that can be used to insert a page name, like "News," or "Cardinals baseball". If used, they will show up throughout the page in places where the URL or section is displayed (such as above summary blocks). For more information, see URL labels, and How to use them.

5c  Description - This is the description for this URL (This will help with SEO on this page).  For more information, see HTML <meta> Tag.

5d  Keywords - Allows you to specify keywords for this URL (This will help with SEO on this page).

5e  Priority - Allows you to specify a priority for this URL. Enter in a number between 0 and 1, the default is .5. This is used for the sitemap.xml file the search engines reference. For more information, see Sitemaps XML Format.


Note:

<priority>

optional

The priority of this URL relative to other URLs on your site. Valid values range from 0.0 to 1.0. This value does not affect how your pages are compared to pages on other sites—it only lets the search engines know which pages you deem most important for the crawlers.

The default priority of a page is 0.5.

Please note that the priority you assign to a page is not likely to influence the position of your URLs in a search engine's result pages. Search engines may use this information when selecting between URLs on the same site, so you can use this tag to increase the likelihood that your most important pages are present in a search index.

Also, please note that assigning a high priority to all of the URLs on your site is not likely to help you. Since the priority is relative, it is only used to select between URLs on your site.


5f  Change Frequency - Allows you to specify a frequency for this URL. This is used for the sitemap.xml file the search engines reference. For more information, see Sitemaps XML Format.


Note:

<changefreq>

optional

How frequently the page is likely to change. This value provides general information to search engines and may not correlate exactly to how often they crawl the page. Valid values are:

  • always
  • hourly
  • daily
  • weekly
  • monthly
  • yearly
  • never

The value "always" should be used to describe documents that change each time they are accessed. The value "never" should be used to describe archived URLs.

Please note that the value of this tag is considered a hint and not a command. Even though search engine crawlers may consider this information when making decisions, they may crawl pages marked "hourly" less frequently than that, and they may crawl pages marked "yearly" more frequently than that. Crawlers may periodically crawl pages marked "never" so that they can handle unexpected changes to those pages.


5g  Redirect HTTPS - Redirects the URL from http to https (SSL - Secured) connection. For more information on running your site in Secure Mode, Click Here.

5h  Save Changes:  At this point if you click Save Changes, the Edit URL window will save and close. You can reopen the URL and continue to edit as you wish by finding the name of the new URL in the list in Manage URL Maps, and double clicking on the name.

Customizations

In Flex, Page customizations / URL Customizations are properties that control the overall look, feel, and functionality of your site. These make use of radio buttons and dropdowns to choose the setting. In order to change any customization, you must first check the box to the left to make the customization active. Additionally, it is recommended that you test these on a test section of your site not available to users, such as example.com/test, in order to avoid making live changes on your site.

Flex customizations make use of inheritance, where a setting on one URL will flow down to all URLs below it until it hits a URL that has a different setting on it. (Ex: Background color set on the frontpage will change effect URL below it, so if the background color is set to red on flex, then /news/local/city_hall would also have a red background. But if /news/local has was set to a background color of green, then the frontpage and /news would be red, and /local and /local/city_hall would be green).


NOTE: Page customizations / URL Customizations are set based on who clicks save LAST. If one person is working in Design / Blocks / Page customizations, and one person is working in Settings / URLs / Customizations, the person who clicks save last will have set the customizations for the URL they were working on.

NOTE: Most Page Customization Properties apply to all URL's but there are specific properties that apply based on the Skin that is being used (ie: Business Properties appear for the /marketplace URL using the Business Skin).

NOTE: Only those with Manager, Editor, or Shopper Manager access will be able to change these customizations. For more information, see the Groups - Access Levels documentation.


Zen - These are name/value pairs that need to be entered manually. Click Add and type the name, hit the Tab key, and type in the value. Click Save Changes after you have added your properties. Some properties make use of inheritance, where a setting on one URL will flow down to all URLs below it until it hits a URL that has a different setting on it, others do not. See the list of custom properties below for application specific properties. For a list of non-application properties, see General URL Custom Properties (Zen only).

Application Specific URL Custom Properties For Zen

BLOX Real Estate and Wheels URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Blueprint URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Calendar URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Classifieds URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Comments URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Eedition URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

General URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Google Survey URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Marketplace URL Custom properties (Zen only)

MegaSearch URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Metering URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Navigation Builder URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Newsletter URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

OpenGraph Tags URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Pagination URL Custom Properties

Poll URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Print Directory URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Subscription URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Touch 5 URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Users URL Custom Properties (Zen only)

Edit URL

To edit a URL you can highlight the name of the URL and click Edit in the upper right corner of the window, OR, right click the name and click Edit, OR, double click the name of the URL. This will open a Edit URL window.

Delete URL

To delete a URL you can highlight the name of the URL and click Delete in the upper right corner of the window, OR, right click the name and click Delete. Either of these actions will bring up the Delete Selected URL? window. Click Yes to proceed or No to cancel the process.

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Preview URL

To preview a URL you can highlight the name of the URL and click Preview in the upper right corner of the window, OR, right click the name and click Preview. This will open the URL in a new web page for you to preview. The Preview button always goes to the front page of your website by default unless a specific URL is selected to preview.


Note:  If you want to see the newly created or edited URLs in Design / Blocks URLs window, you will need to refresh Design / Blocks (F5 should suffice).


Maps

Settings / URLs is where you create, edit, and delete MAPs for your site.

Accessing Maps

From the dropdown in the the upper left choose Settings / URLs (Not sure how to access BLOX Applications? Click here).

This will bring up the Manage URL Maps window.

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You should see a map in the main window; flex or flexsystem for Flex websites, default for Zen sites. If your site has been redesigned. the map may have a different name. If your site is currently being redesigned you may see multiple maps. If there are multiple maps the map that is in Bold is the one that is being used by your live site.

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bold.png

A Map is the list of the all the URLs on your site.

Add a New Map

Click New / Create New Map in the upper left corner.

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This will open the Create a New URL Map window.

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URL_MapName.jpg

3a  Map Name:  This is a required field and must be all lower case with words separated by underscore (_) or hyphens (-) only. Next you'll need to select the Template Library for your site.


Note:  The Template Library is the source of the files that our system pulls from to create your site. There are some things to consider before you choose depending on what type of site you have. Please read Global Site Templates vs Components (Flex) (Zen) and the following comments here before making your selection.


3b  Template Library - Site Templates:  Currently, Site Templates are the core templates for all of TownNews.com templates including Flex and Zen. These are scheduled to be discontinued once we finalize specific templates for both the Flex and Zen components. These templates cannot be changed by customers.

3c  Template Library - Flex Templates:  If you are currently on a Flex site, you will continue to use the Flex Templates.

3d  Template Library - Zen Templates:  If you are a Zen site, you should use the Zen Templates but can also still use the Site Templates.


Note: If you are a Zen site, you Can Not start a Flex redesign just by choosing Flex. There are changes that need to be made on the backend of your site by TownNews.com staff. For information about a Zen to Flex redesign, and doing it yourself please contact your regional sales rep.


3e  Create:  Once you've made your Site Template selection, click on Create. This opens the Edit URL Map window.

Edit URL Map - There are three sections to edit.

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Map Configuration

4a  Map Name:  This is auto-populated when creating the new Map URL.

4b  Global Skin:  By default, Default is selected. In Flex, you have "Flex" as another option. In Zen, you have "global-core-zen" as another option. This is pulled from the your system templates that you have selected. This can be changed (see Skin below in 4d).

4c  Library:  This is auto-populated based on the Template Library you selected when creating the new Map URL.

4d  Skin:  Here you can specifically select the Skin you want to apply to the new Map URL you are creating. This will be applied to the entire site but can be changed at the specific sub-URL level in the same manner when setting it up or editing it later.

To change the Skin, click on the Change button. This will open the Select a Skin window.  By default, all Applications will be selected.  You can leave it that way and do a Search, or only 'check' the checkbox next to the Application you are working with.  Here, Editorial is checked and now I see only the skins available for the Editorial application (for Zen, select Base | for Flex, select Flex).  Click Select when done and the window will close.

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URL_MapSkinFlexZen.jpg

4e  Redirect URL:  If you want this URL to redirect to another website, place that site's URL here. If the site is not part of your site, you need to use a fully qualified URL path (e.g. http://www.townnews.com). Otherwise, if the site is a part of your current site you could use relative path (e.g. /marketplace/businessname).

Page Properties

This is where you set various Page Properties that enhance the SEO (Search Engine Optimation) performance of your website. It builds out the <meta data> tag information for your site.

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4f  Page Title:  This will display on the Section page of the site (e.g. Marketplace).

4g  Label:  This is a newer feature that adds another layer to the SEO processing of the site. On the front end, it will display the Label name instead of a long title or collection title.

4h  Description:  Put in a description that is descriptive of the page. This helps with the SEO process as it builds in the <meta name="description"> tags on the page.

4i  Keywords:  Enter in any and all keywords that apply to the page separated by a comma. This helps with the SEO process as it builds out the <meta name="keywords"> tags on the page.

4j  Priority:  This allows you to specify a priority for this URL. Enter in a number between 0 and 1, the default is .5. This is used for the sitemap.xml file that the search engines reference.

4k  Change Frequency:  This allows you to specify a frequency for this URL. This is used for the sitemap.xml file that the search engines reference.

Customizations

You can add properties for a URL map.

  • In Zen, click on Add and type in the property and the value (see General URL Custom Properties (Zen only).
  • In Flex, there is a GUI with the values already there.  Just scroll through them and make your selections.
  • Click the Save Changes button once done creating your URL map. Your new Map will be added to the Manage URL Maps window. If you want to switch to your new map (see Set Active below).
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Duplicate Map

To Duplicate a map, right click on the map you want to duplicate and select Duplicate.

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This will open the Duplicate URL Map window. Enter in the new New map Name and click Duplicate URL Map.

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Edit Map

To edit a map, click the Edit button in the upper right corner of the window or right click and select edit. You can also double click on the map to open it. This will bring up the Edit URL Map window that was detailed in the Add New Map portion of this document.

Delete Map

To delete a map, highlight the map you want to delete, click the Delete button in the upper right corner of the window or right click and select Delete. This will bring up a Delete URL Map popup. Select Yes to delete the map or No to cancel the process.

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Import a Map

To import a map, click the New / Import Map button in the upper left corner of the Manage URL Maps window.

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This will open the Import URL Map window. Enter in the Map Name, and click the Browse button to locate the file.

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This will open the File Upload window, locate the file, it will have a JSON extension, click Open. Then click the Import URL Map button on the Import URL Map window.

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Export a Map

To export a map, right click the map you want to export and click the Export button.

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In older versions of Microsoft Windows, this will open a popup window allowing you to export your file. The File Name will be the map name with the JSON extension. Otherwise, the .json file will be automatically downloaded and placed in your 'downloads' folder.

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Set Active

To Set a map to active, right click the map you want to activate and select the Make Active button.

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In Flex, Page customizations / URL Customizations are properties that control the overall look, feel, and functionality of your site. These make use of radio buttons and dropdowns to choose the setting. In order to change any customization, you must first check the box to the left to make the customization active. Additionally, it is recommended that you test these on a test section of your site not available to users, such as example.com/test, in order to avoid making live changes on your site.

Flex customizations make use of inheritance, where a setting on one URL will flow down to all URLs below it until it hits a URL that has a different setting on it. (Ex: Background color set on the frontpage will change effect URL below it, so if the background color is set to red on flex, then /news/local/city_hall would also have a red background. But if /news/local has was set to a background color of green, then the frontpage and /news would be red, and /local and /local/city_hall would be green).


NOTE: Page customizations / URL Customizations are set based on who clicks save LAST. If one person is working in Design / Blocks / Page customizations, and one person is working in Settings / URLs / Customizations, the person who clicks save last will have set the customizations for the URL they were working on.

NOTE: Most Page Customization Properties apply to all URL's but there are specific properties that apply based on the Skin that is being used (ie: Business Properties appear for the /marketplace URL using the Business Skin).

NOTE: Only those with Manager, Editor, or Shopper Manager access will be able to change these customizations. For more information, see the Groups - Access Levels documentation.