In our previous installments, The Basics of the Office 365 Communication Site, The Components of the Office 365 Communication Site, and Creating an Office 365 Communication Site, we built upon the basics of a Communication Site to understanding how a Communication Site is created and shared. In this installment, we will now look at how to customize the Communication Site through adding, deleting and customizing the building blocks, referred to as web parts, of your page.
Web Parts – Customizing
As discussed in Part 2 of this series, there are three site designs that are made available when creating the Communication Site. The three are Topic, Showcase, and Blank. Each web part can be included, excluded and customized to your needs. There are four web parts that are included, by default, in both the Topic and Showcase site designs. With the Blank site design, you choose which web parts are to be included.
Types of Web Parts
There are five different types of web parts, each with a specific function. These web parts include: Hero, News, Events, Document and Image Gallery.
1. Hero Web Part
The Hero web part in the Topic site design consists of a five-tile layout, but the number of tiles is customizable and can range from one to five. In addition to this, links, images, and text for each tile can be changed.
The Hero web part in the Showcase site design defaults to a vertical layout with three layers but can range from one to five layers if customization is chosen.
Changing the Hero Web Part Layout
To change the layout in the Hero web part for the Topic site design:
Changing the Hero Web Part Layout
To change the layout from a grid to vertical layers in the Hero web part for the Showcase site design:
Changing the Image, Text, and Links for Each Tile or Layer
To change the image, text, and links for each tile for the Topic and Showcase site designs:
Reordering Tiles or Layers
Tiles and Layers can be reordered by moving them where you would them to go:
Columnizing the Hero Web Part
The Hero web part is designed to span across the full width of the page. If you choose to have the Hero web part span partially across the page, then you would add a column to the page and place the Hero web part into that column.
Adding and Empty Hero Web Part to a Page
You can add an empty Hero web part, even if the page is not a Communication Site page.
Click the + sign in the green circle. Choose Hero web part;
The Hero web part is the most configurable and contains the main content that you want to share with your audience. This is where features, announcements, status updates and news are shared. Combining intriguing headlines and attention-grabbing images, the Hero web part seduces the audience to engage by reading, responding and participating. In our next installment, Part 5: News, Events, Documents and Image Gallery, we will examine the last four web parts to complete the customization of your Office 365 Communications Site.
In our previous installments, The Basics of the Office 365 Communication Site and The Components of the Office 365 Communication Site, we discussed the fundamental reasons for creating a Communication Site and looked at the components of the Communication Site in greater detail.
In this installment, we will advance to creating an Office 365 Communication Site.
6 Simple Steps to Creating an Office 365 Communication Site
The following are the six basic steps in creating a new Communication Site. After creating your Communication Site, the Site can be customized with various web parts. The six basic steps are:
Sharing a Site
Sharing a site is very simple! By using the Share command, you an invite people in your organization to a site. After creating a new site, it is a quick way to invite people and to grant permission to the people who you want to use your site.
One way to build team spirit and collaboration is to take advantage of sharing the site with a Kick-Off! This is a great method to emphasize team collaboration and to announce to the organization the new project that will be taking place.
To share a site:
The people from your organization that you have invited will now have access to your site once they accept your invitation.
As you can see, creating an Office 365 Communication Site is very simple, and consists of only 6 steps! Sharing the Communication Site is also simple. The next step will be to add, delete, and customize the web parts which delivers the content to your audience. This is explained in detail in Part 4: Adding, Deleting and Customizing Web Parts for an Office 365 Communication Site – The Hero Web Part and Part 5: Adding, Deleting and Customizing Web Parts for an Office 365 Communication Site – The News, Events, Document and Image Gallery Web Parts.