Seeking advice for homepage

Hi everyone. I thought I’d present this to the group to see if anyone wants to make some suggestions. We’ve been live for several months and are seeing a good deal of activity…

I saw a recent topic on using latest vs. categories for homepage, so I thought I’d ask the community for some advice.

From my viewpoint, I would use the latest page if it could do a few things…

  • Provide a more intuitive call out to browse categories and perhaps allow me to place a promotion for featured categories at the top. (It would only appear on this page, and we’d style it minimally for mobile)
  • Allow us to suppress topics from certain categories that were not of general interest to the community or perhaps could be considered adult it nature.
  • If the search had an auto-suggest to jump to a matched category, that might help with the switch. I think this could be important for communities with a large number of categories.

Personally, I love using the latest page on mobile, it gives a real live feel to the community. I almost want to see if there’s a way in custom JS to force mobile to default to latest, but don’t know if there’s a way to do that. Currently, from Google Analytics, I know very few users have discovered the latest page.

Anyhow, I hope it’s okay using this category for discussion like this. I understand that every community has different needs, but perhaps we can find some common ground that would make sense to request for a future iteration of the homepage options.

Suggestions? Ideas for the future?

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I changed my home to Latest and I’m happy with that.

For the first suggestion, it seems like a mix of self-ordered & latest. As a user I’d probably be confused since I expect to see admin-ordered on the normal home page, and time-ordered on the Latest Posts page, but not a mix of the two on the latter. Would I like to have a 3rd page that works as you said? Perhaps. But on the Latest Posts Page I wouldn’t want to have the site “interfere” with my intent to simply see the latest posts.
For the 2nd item, maybe you can create a “meta” post that instructs users how to mute categories they don’t want to see? Of course having a feature would be easier.

(Btw, did you see this topic (and similar)?)

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Assuming I understand what you mean, you could do this with sticky banners.

[quote=“charleswalter, post:1, topic:36268”]
Allow us to suppress topics from certain categories
[/quote] Suppress from all list views? Would un-listing serve your purpose?

Doesn’t this feature already exist?

What does this mean? Can you provide a mockup?

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I think the suppression comment related to suppressing topics from categories, rather than categories from the homepage – which I guess un-listing would do.

The suppress from homepage doesn’t remove the category’s posts from appearing on the Latest page. That would certainly help, or if there was an alternate way to do it, or create a page similar to “latest” that could exclude certain categories.

I’ll work on a sample of the auto-suggest for mobile. I know Discourse auto-suggest on the desktop search, but the mobile interface doesn’t really allow for it. However, if the auto-suggest on mobile just included categories, that would help communities with larger number of categories.

Yes, it does. Perhaps you didn’t suppress a subcategory, as this setting is not inherited by subcategories? That’s the entire purpose of the setting.

(when we say “homepage” we usually mean /latest and this copy should probably be improved)

Hmm, perhaps there’s a bug? or perhaps it’s related to caching?

I have this category suppressed:

But I can see topics from this category appearing on the Latest page.

I’ve had this category suppressed for over 24 hours.

And just a new topic appear on the latest page from it.

I think this is still outstanding


Ah. that makes sense!

Okay, so I may try setting it as a homepage after all, and look at setting up a featured topic as a category listing.

Will be interesting to see how this goes…

So, I’ve tried pinning a topic to the top of the Latest so that it provides an A-Z index of our categories, but I notice when I go back to the link, it just takes me to the footer (because it looks at pinning a topic globally as a reply, and I’m getting jumped to the most recent reply).

Something to consider if we look at the welcome message of the community as something that could be updated occasionally.

That depends on your logged-in state and read status in the topic for you as a user. Try it as anon, etc.

You could hard-link to the first post if that’s really what you want to do vs a link to the topic.

Yes, I get that. But I don’t know why a community admin would ever want to send a user who returns to a pinned topic to a reply that says this message has been pinned globally. Perhaps in the future, those notices shouldn’t be treated as replies? Just a thought, I noticed on the Meta Discourse community just now and thought it felt awkward scrolling back up to read the welcome message which has some helpful links in it.

How do I add a hard-link?

That is why you typically close that topic so nobody can reply to it. Depends on the goals.

I agree @codinghorror. I’m just saying that if you pin a topic (no replies allowed) so that it can be accessed more than once, it doesn’t make sense that the user would be taken to the bottom of the topic in the future (because it has a pseudo reply stating that it has been pinned globally)

So how do we create hard-links?

Like this

Seeking advice for homepage

Right, but how can I add that link just to the Latest page?

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My recommendation would be that you just delete the moderator-action post. Unless you really need general users to know who pinned a topic, it only provides redundant information about the topic status (“it’s pinned”).

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@Yuun I could have sworn I tried that before and that it removed the pin. Just did it now and it left the global pin and worked as expected. Thanks. I would think all community admins who want to pin a non-reply topic like this would want to delete that post.

Anyhow, will look to activate this later today :smile:. Should be an interesting experiment!