An asset (shared content) is a file that stores a piece of page content such as an image or an event description. To display an asset's content on a page or template, you insert it into a widget on the page or template. In other words, the widget is the content type and the asset is the content for that content type. A shared asset looks the same as local content (that you enter directly onto a page or template), however assets have a different function than local content. Assets enable you to include the same content on multiple pages or templates on your website.

For example, when you issue a press release, it usually contains a brief blurb about your company and who to contact for more information. Job openings usually include equal opportunity disclaimers. Rather than retyping this information for every new page, you can create assets to include this content, then add the appropriate asset to each page.

Using an asset reduces the amount of work you need to do to maintain your content, because when you change the content of the asset, the content is automatically updated on all pages that use the asset. Using assets to share content also reduces the chance that errors will occur when the same content must be changed on multiple pages.

Note that forms and binary files are automatically treated as assets. While you must create other types of assets manually, form and binary assets are created automatically when you save their widget content. A full list of out of the box widgets can be found in the Widget Reference

Creating an Asset from the Finder

You can create a shared asset by following the steps below, by bulk uploading assets, or by uploading an image when editing a Rich Text Widget or a Custom Widget that include an image field.

To create an asset in the Finder:

  1. Click Assets on the left side of Finder.
  2. Select the folder that will store the new asset. 
  3. Click the Create Asset icon to open the New Asset dialog.
  4. In the Select asset type field, click the asset type that you want to create.
  5. Click Next. 

A form for creating the asset opens in Editor view. The value that you enter into the Name field becomes the name of the asset and is displayed next to its icon in the Finder. The Image, File and Flash asset forms do not include a Name field; the name of the uploaded file becomes the name of the asset and is displayed beside the asset icon in the Finder. Click Save to create the asset. 

Creating a Shared Asset from Content on a Page

Any content that is created at the page level can be converted into a shared asset.  For example, say you have a Rich Text Widget on the page where you create a text blurb about "Upcoming Events."  After creating it, you realize that you would like to have that content on multiple pages and want to turn it into a shared asset.  To do so, you simply open the Rich Text Widget for editing, click on the "Shared Asset" checkbox and specify its name and location.  From here you can reuse that asset on any other pages where that include a Rich Text Widget.

Additional Notes

Below are some considerations to make when naming an asset, page, or a folder.  The list contains some characters and rules outside of letters and digits (A-Z, a-z, 0-9) that may cause problems.  

  • Characters that are not valid in file names on Microsoft Windows operating systems (and may cause problems in the CMS): \ / : * ? " < > |
  • Characters that are not safe in URLs:# (hash, pound, or octothorpe; used in HTML anchors)  These will be converted to a hyphen(-)
  • Semicolons (;): used to append jsession IDs to URLs
  • Percent Sign (%): used to encode or escape characters in URLs.)  This will be converted to a hyphen(-)

The following characters are allowed:

  • ! $ & ' ( ) + , - . = @ [ ] ^ _ ` { } ~