What is it?
Channels act as the storage containers for content in your community. Channels are categorized by feature, so Blog articles go in a Blog channel, Wiki articles go in a Wiki channel, and so on. You cannot put a Wiki in a Blog channel or vice versa. All the content created in your community needs to be housed in a Channel.
Channels exist for Blogs, Calendars, Folders, Forums, Microblogs, Wikis and Tasks.
Blog channels allows members to share timely information within their community. Blogs are often used to post corporate news or informative articles. Add a Blog widget to your community homepage so you can share company news and updates with the community’s entire member base in a convenient place no one can miss.
Calendar channels house events and are used for things like corporate events, project timelines, staff vacation calendars, assigning internal projects to a user with a timeline.
Use Folder channels to create corporate, team, and/or project-based file storage areas within your intranet. In folder channels, you can store, organize, manage, and share any type of file and view previews of common file types including Microsoft Office, PDF, Excel, and rich media.
Use a Forum channel to provide a place for people to ask questions, suggest ideas, report problems, and have discussions. Comments and answers are provided on the Forum allowing everyone to see the answers and engage in the conversation.
Microblogs are comparable corporate Twitter feeds. They are a great way to communicate a short thought to either a specific audience or to all members within the community. You can name your microblog channel, Watercooler, Company Chatter, or something that resonates with your company culture.
Task channels allow you to create lists of tasks where you can assign duties, set due dates, and break out subtasks. They are used often for coordinating small projects.
Wikis are like an internal knowledge base that is open to constant change. Wikis allow multiple authors to collaborate on content, exchange edits, and compare drafts. Some teams use wikis for core project documentation, and others for policies and procedures. Wikis are useful for storing information that has long-term value, like standard operating procedures, corporate policies, and safety considerations. Alternately, a wiki can also act as a department’s knowledge management center storing all relevant documents, videos, and images.
This article, for example is housed in a wiki channel.
Features and functionality
When you create a Channel in your community, there are fields and options you will be prompted to complete. See below for a complete list of all the available features and functions you will face as you create your Channel.
Title - The title will serve as the name of the channel and will appear in your navigation bar, in widgets, and on the channel, itself. The URL path of the channel will also be based on the name. Both can be changed later if needed. See Site Manager for more information.
Description - This field allows you to enter text that will be displayed on the channel.
Location - This feature allows you to choose where the Channel will reside in your community. This can be changed after creation. See Site Manager for more information.
Hide from navigation - When this feature is selected, the channel will not appear in your navigation bar. However, you can still access it through the site manager or by its URL.
Forum topics - When you create a Forum channel you will be prompted to select the type of topics you want the forum to include. You can choose to limit the forum to questions only, or you can Select All to permit all options.
The following features are common to most channels and have their own dedicated support documents. Please follow the links for more information:
- Channel Color
- Channel Template
- Email Content
- Read Tracking
- Search Engine Optimization
How to add a Channel
Step 1: Create a channel in the Site manager
Follow the instructions in the Site Manager article to create your channel.
Step 2: Configure Access
Check and update your Access Rules to confirm that the appropriate Groups can view, create, or edit content on your channel. See Access for more information.
Step 3: Configure your channel settings
Add a custom email address, set up moderation, choose a channel color and more in your Channel Settings
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I create more than one channel?
Yes, you can. You can create as many channels as you need.
Best practices / Tips and tricks
Give your Channel a description
Be sure to complete the description field when creating a new Channel. The description field lets people know the purpose of the channel and what information they will find within.
Use the right names
Give each channel a unique and descriptive name to help people easily find the content they are looking for.