Blogs can be a versatile tool for posting news and announcements. A number of features have been suggested to enhance this but they are scattered around the Wishlist. Perhaps they should be consolidated?
1. The one I would like is the ability for the Recent Blog Posts gadget to include the full blog post for the first few. So in addition to the "Show last 5 posts" setting there would be "Show full text of last 2 posts." This would show the last 2 posts in full, and the next 3 in summary. That way we could present substantial information in the limited space on our home page, plus a link to the full blog.
Other desirable features:
2. Enter a beginning and ending date for a post. It would appear on the beginning date, and go away on the ending date.
This was mentioned in http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8826262-way-to-automatically-remove-or-hide-blog-post-as and also http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8827858-blog-features .
3. Control whether posts are displayed oldest first or newest first. This makes more sense if suggestion #2 is provided. http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8826943-reverse-order-of-blog-posts
4. Control whether the poster's name and/or date are displayed, in both the blog and recent blog posts gadgets. I mentioned this in the above thread.
5. Allow the poster to specify where in the text the "Read more" link appears. At the least, let the teaser size be specified as in http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8825692-allow-to-customize-blog-post-summary-teaser-size . But sometimes you only need one line; sometimes you need ten, so it's better for the author to be able to insert the break, subject to a settable line limit.
These are definitely required! I've just manually created a 'news' section on our homepage through content gadgets and manually added the title, date and featured image.
By making these features available it would make life so much easier for all.
Another item to add to blog enhancements would be providing an option for different 'styles' e.g. horizontal with selection of # of articles to the max width of the website or vertical as previously mentioned.
Also with both of those, the featured image being selected as 'visible' or 'hidden'.
Here's the link to our homepage for an example
Job Shadow TV commented
All of these are great blog features! I would also like to add the next and previous post links to the bottom of each blog post. That way the website visitor who is enjoying exploring the blog doesn't have to go back out to the main list each time to select a new post to read (or in our case watch the video).
Job Shadow TV commented
Add a gadget for link buttons, similar to the ones you find at the bottom of blog posts for next and previous post. This is an especially helpful feature when someone new finds your blog and is exploring... rather than having to go back out to the blog list each time.
#5 especially! At the moment it is a clunky process of guessing, and doesn't allow thumbnails, which are visually really important.
Alex Sirota commented
I would add a couple of more features for blogs.
1) Have the ability to add an excerpt that would show in the recent blogs gadget (this should be an option). So the excerpt could be added for each blog separately from the content and whether it shows or not in the gadget for recent blogs
2) Similarly show a featured image in the blog entry. Have the ability to set an optional featured image, and have the ability to show that image in the recent blogs gadget.
A new blog gallery gadget could make use of the exceprts and images much better than a recent blogs gadget. The gallery could be a carousel or a grid like show of blog posts. Could be quite powerful way to feature content.
Martin Robertson commented
The blog function needs to be more Facebook-like in its functionality.
AdminEvgeny Zaritovskiy (VP Technology of Wild Apricot by Personify, Wild Apricot by Personify) commented
Thank you, Walt, for simplifying my life of a product manager :)