Behind the Scenes: the LightCMS blog

We are excited to launch our new blog — exclusively for LightCMS. We have been blogging for many years now over on the Element Fusion blog, but we feel the time has come to launch a new blog, specifically for you. We hope to provide more resources and news just for LightCMS users and web designers.

As an introduction, we thought it might be fun to offer a quick run-down on how we set up our new blog using LightCMS. After all, this entire website runs on LightCMS, which has a blog element built right in, so adding a new blog was really quite simple. You can follow the same steps to set up a blog on your own LightCMS-powered website.

Adding the blog element to your site

First, we created a new page to house the blog element. Since we're so creative, we called our page "blog." Then, we added the blog element from the "add element" drop down menu in the main content region. That's it. Blog created!

Skins and settings

Before adding content, it is good to get all of your settings taken care of. You can go to the blog settings to set things like how many post to display, commenting options and the blog's skin. We left our blog element in the "post with body" skin for this main page and we limited to show the 10 most current posts (see image below).

LightCMS blog element

For us, the blog is new so we did not have any content to import from an existing blog, but if you do have content to import, here are some additional tips on importing content to your new blog

Secondary blog elements

We wanted to have a list of tags in our blog sidebar to serve as an additional layer of navigation. To accomplish this, we simply added a second blog element to the sidebar region. Then, on the settings for that blog element, we chose the "TagList" skin and we also told this element to display posts from our primary blog element. That's it. Tag list created!

Setting up RSS

The blog element automatically generates an RSS feed, but we like to run our raw feeds through Feedburner to make it easier to share. We also use Feedburner to keep track of feed stats and to generate the email subscription option for our feed. For detailed instruction on setting up your feed with feedburner, check out this support article.

Once you have your Feedburner feed up and running, you can add your new feed address to the "Alternative URL" field on the blog settings tab. Our system will now use your Feedburner URL for all references to your blog's feed.

Adding Content

Unfortunately, LightCMS can't write blog posts for you. But it can make it super easy to publish them. Just click "add post" and put in your content. Add tags/categories, make use of SEO friendly url's, and utilize the built-in WYSIWYG editor for text, links and images.

Looking ahead

That's just a quick look at the basics of setting up a blog on LightCMS. Now that we have ours in place, we look forward to bringing you helpful content and updates. Be sure to subscribe by RSS or email with the links on the right. And leave us a comment if you have ideas about what you would like to see here on the LightCMS blog.