In this article, we're going to highlight one of our newest widgets, Latest Q&A List, covering topics like:
- how it works,
- where it's generally used,
- its configuration options,
- and more.
How it works
The Latest Q&A List widget displays the latest question and answer posts and automatically shows new ones as they're posted. Just like our other feed-based widgets, the benefit is two-fold:
- It ensures fresh content is always available for your members
- and it requires minimal maintenance.
Typically, you can add this widget to a page and walk away, letting it curate new content for you.
What it looks like
Like other feed-based widgets, this one presents each post in a list. Almost everything is configurable, like whether the author's picture displays, a preview of the post is included, etc.
Where this widget is located
This widget is generally added to site Home pages and individual community Home pages.
- On site Home pages, it's recommended to not limit content to a specific community; this way, the widget shows content from ALL communities a user belongs to, as well as any public communities you may have. Think of this as a one-stop shop across all of a user's community memberships.
- On community Home pages, the widget is typically configured to only show content from that community.
Similarly to the Latest Discussions widget, this one comes with several configuration options, some of which you may already be familiar with: filtering by a specific community and controlling how many days back the widget should look to surface relevant posts.
TIP: One of the ways you can filter this widget is to only show questions without answers; this is an excellent way to spotlight questions across your site that need an answer, prompting your members to resolve them more quickly.
Let's take a look at each of this widget's configuration parameters:
If you're placing this widget on a non-community page (i.e., your site's Home page):
If you're placing this widget on a community Home page:
|Show Posts from All Available Communities?||Set to Yes or No depending on your selection above. For example, if you're placing the widget on your site's Home page, leave this set to Yes; if you're placing the widget on a community Home page, set it to No.|
|Body Length||Controls the maximum number of characters content can display in the widget. We recommend keeping it to ~150 (the default) so the widget doesn't take up too much space on the page. This keeps content to a "preview" style, giving users enough to see if content piques their interest; if it does, they can click a link to read a full post.|
Posts older than the specified number of days will not be included.
A popular use for this is to set it to something like "14" to only show "fresh content" in the widget.
|Hide if Community Does Not Have Q&A?||
Ultimately, you can think of this as a safety net that will prevent the widget from displaying if it's empty.
|Hide if No Data?||
Similar to the option above, this one lets you hide the widget if there's no Q&A content to display.
|Max Number of Posts to Show in List||Controls the total number of posts that can display in the widget.|
|Max Subject/Title Length||Controls the maximum number of characters of a post's title will display. For example, if set to 50 but a post's title is 75 characters, the final 25 characters will be truncated (indicated by "...").|
|Preview as User||For more information about how you can use these two fields to tease private community content to non-members, see Tease Discussion Content to Non-members or Authenticated Users.|
|Show Add Button in Header?||If enabled, an Add button is displayed above the widget content users can click to create a post. You can think of this as a "shortcut" for users to engage.|
The next several options all pertain to whether specific information is displayed in the widget, like author or company names, the date and time, etc.
Browse these options and decide whether or not to display their associated information.
Use these options to filter the types of questions are displayed in the widget:
How to add this widget
This widget is available by default on many Higher Logic sites. If you don't have this widget on your site or want to add it somewhere new, let's learn how.
- Navigate to the page where you'd like to add the widget (e.g., your site's Home page or a community Home page) and click the edit this page icon in the Webmaster Links menu.
- You're now editing the page in Page Designer. On the Build tab > Widget section, type "latest Q&A" in the search field to quickly locate the widget.
- Drag and drop the widget onto the canvas in the desired page location.
- Configure the widget to fit your needs (refer to the Widget configuration section above for help)
- Click Publish to apply the change and add the widget to the page.