Cosmic JS Blog Stay tuned for community news, company announcements and updates from the Cosmic JS team.

Building with the Content Editor in Mind


by Tony Spiro on August 23, 2016

When building websites connected to a CMS, it is important that the content is structured as simply as possible for the end user to edit.  I call this user-first content development.   It benefits everyone – the content editor, the developer and the agency when the content editor is empowered with the easiest and most intuitive way to manage content.  This seems obvious, but this oversight happens all too often and results in confusion and ultimately a bad experience for the content editor.  When you build user-first, you are empowering everyone on your team to build the best possible product.

In this article I'm going to show you some basic ways to structure content for your websites that make content very easy to manage on the backend.   When you start with an easy-to-use CMS and structure your content intuitively, your content editor will be able to quickly and easily navigate through the CMS to edit content and will 
ultimately sing your praises.

Let's first look at a standard website layout.  For 99% of all websites you have the standard structure of Header, Main Content and Footer and it looks something like this:



When I look at the page layout above and consider how it will be managed in the CMS, I immediately translate this into two different object types: Global (items on all pages like the Header and Footer) and Page (Main Content).  In the Cosmic JS backend it will look something like this:



This is set up in a way that allows for easy communication with your content editor on how to edit the content on the pages of the website.  If they are looking to edit a page, they go into Pages. If they need to edit anything that is repeated across the entire website, they go into Globals.  For the developer, there's an easy way to scale Global items that will be reused across the site like logo, navigation, social links, etc.

Now let's say we want to add a hero image on the top of each page on the website.


Cosmic JS makes this really easy to do by using metafields.  To add a new metafield to all of our new and existing pages, we will go into our Object Type settings for our Pages and add an image metafield for hero.


Now each Page will have the image metafield hero available:


Let's say we also wanted to add the company's social links to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  This is really easy.  All we need to do is add a new Socials object in Globals and each social link will have its own text metafield.  It would look something like this:



As you can see, Cosmic JS makes it really easy to give your content editor the easiest and most intuitive content editing experience.  I hope you found these basic examples useful in getting started with user-first content development using Cosmic JS.  If you have any questions about how to further structure your content for easy handoff to content editors, please join our Slack channel, or reach out to us on Twitter.

You may also like


Medium has become the de-facto platform for publishing online content.  In this article, I'm going to show you how to build a Medium backup application using Node.js and Cosmic JS.

We've got a new feature to make adding existing media to your Objects even easier.  Now when you click the image icon on any content editor, you will see a folder icon to browse existing media in your Bucket.

"I started with Swift, then Python, then JavaScript... JavaScript, written everywhere developers want to be."

This Appointment Scheduler lets users select a day and a one-hour time slot between 9AM and 5PM to meet with us. It integrates with Twilio to send a confirmation text that their appointment has been scheduled. This also comes with a Cosmic JS Extension so we can manage the appointments right from within the Cosmic JS dashboard.

In this installment of the Cosmic JS Developer Spotlight Series, we sat down with Brandon Reid, a JavaScript developer residing in Dallas, Texas who's currently Lead Developer at Simple Media. Brandon recently launched a new React / Node website on Cosmic for The Arnold Companies, an energy and aviation client. Follow Brandon on LinkedIn and GitHub, and enjoy the Q/A.

We are excited to announce that you can now use all of the Cosmic JS features in a full demo before signing up for an official Cosmic JS account.