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Using the Index Page

The Index Page is a powerful design feature available in certain templates. The Index Page collects images and content from different pages and arranges them visually, creating a single destination where visitors can browse content from multiple sub-pages.

Each template family has its own Index style that falls into one of three categories:

  • Grid - Each page in the Index creates a thumbnail image on the page. Clicking a thumbnail image opens the connected page. This design forms a visual navigation grid linking to content throughout your site. Here's an example.
  • Stacked - Each page in the Index creates a section of a single scrolling page. The sections stack vertically, allowing visitors to scroll through a lot of information, all with a unified look. Here's an example.
  • Slideshow - Each page displays as a full-bleed background image with a content overlay. Clicking a page title opens the connected page. This is a great way to use images to introduce different concepts or portfolios. Here's an example.

Note: How Index Pages display in your navigation depends on the template. To create a drop-down menu of pages in your navigation in any template, create a folder. To learn more, visit Folders vs. Index Pages.

Watch a video

To see how the Index Page works, watch this video:

Index Page feature comparison

Use this list to compare different Index styles. Templates are grouped by family. If your template isn't in this chart, it doesn't support an Index Page.

  Style Thumbnails Supported Pages
Avenue Grid Required Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Regular
Bedford, Anya, Bryant, Hayden Stacked Optional Regular
Brine, Aria, Basil, Burke, Cacao, Clay, Ethan, Fairfield, Feed, Foster, Greenwich, Hatch, Heights, Hunter, Hyde, Jaunt, Juke, Keene, Lincoln, Maple, Margot, Marta, Mentor, Mercer, Miller, Mojave, Moksha, Motto, Nueva, Polaris, Rally, Rover, Sofia, Sonny, Sonora, Thorne, Wav, West Stacked Optional Gallery, Regular
Flatiron Grid Required Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Regular
Forte Slideshow Required Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Regular

Marquee, Adversary, Alex, Eamon, Ginger, Mint, Shift

(Discontinued)

Stacked Optional Regular
Momentum Slideshow Required Gallery
Montauk, Julia, Kent, Om Grid Required Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Regular
Pacific, Charlotte, Fulton, Horizon, Naomi Stacked Optional Album, Gallery, Regular
Supply Grid Required Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Regular
Tremont, Camino, Carson, Henson Slideshow Optional Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Regular
York, Artesia, Flores, Harris, Jasper, Jones, Lange, Shibori Grid Optional Album, Blog, Gallery, Events, Products, Projects, Regular

Step 1 - Add an Index Page

If your template supports an Index Page, follow these steps:

  1. From the Home Menu, click Pages.
  2. Click the + icon, then click Index.
  3. Give your Index a title, then press Enter or Return.
Note: If your template supports a stacked Index, the icon will look slightly different.

Step 2 - Adjust Index Page Settings (optional)

Hover over the Index and click the gear-icon to adjust the Index's Page Settings, such as the title and URL slug. In some templates, the Index Page's title, description, and thumbnail image display at the top of the page.

Step 3 - Add pages to the Index

Tip: You can add up to 100 pages to an Index Page, but we don't recommend adding more than 25. The more content you add, the longer the page will take to load.

Add pages

Within the Pages panel, click + Add Page below your Index Page. (Depending on your template, you may see + Add Section+ Add Gallery or Page, or + Add Project instead.)

add-page.png

The Create New Page menu shows the pages your template's Index supports. For example, the Momentum template supports one page type:

momentum-add.png

Click any icon from the menu to add new pages.

You can also drag and drop existing pages into the Index.

For stacked Indexes:

  • You can add sections in the Manage Sections view.
  • Regular Pages are called Content sections.
Note: Disabled pages won't display.

Build the pages

For grid or slideshow Index Pages, add content to any Regular Page or collection page as you would normally. 

For stacked Index Pages, click the title in the Pages panel to scroll to that section in the page preview. Add content using the page preview edit annotation. You can also drag sections out of the Index to edit them. Outside the Index, Content sections become Regular Pages.

  • Custom code added to pages within an Index may not render on your live site. To test your code, remove the page from its Index, then view the page directly in a private or incognito window.
  • If you don't see an edit annotation for a stacked Index, move the page out of the Index to add content, then move it back into the Index. You can also disable the page, add content to it, then re-enable it.

Reorder the pages

The page order in the Pages panel reflects how they display on the Index Page. Drag and drop pages to rearrange their order.

Tip: For stacked Indexes, see our additional tips.

Review any password-protected pages

You can password-protect the main Index in its Page Settings.

Whether a password-protected sub-page displays in the Index depends on the Index style:

Grid and slideshow Indexes

  • The page's thumbnail displays normally. When visitors click through to the page content, they'll be prompted to enter the password for that page. 
  • To completely hide a password-protected page, remove it from the Index or add a password to your main Index Page as well. 

Stacked Indexes

You can no longer add a password to pages within a stacked Index. 

  • Drag the page out of the Index to set a password.
  • Once you've added a password to a page, you can't drag it into an Index.

If your stacked Index sub-page already has a password:

  • The page's thumbnail image and content appears in the Index. 
  • The login prompt won't appear unless the visitor goes to the direct page URL.
  • If you delete the password, the password field will disappear.
  • If you drag the page out of the Index, you won't be able to drag it back in until you remove the password.

Step 4 - Add page thumbnails

For best results, ensure that every page or section in your Index has a thumbnail image. Depending on your template's Index style, the image may become a navigation thumbnail, a banner, or a background image.

In some templates, the thumbnail image is optional. However, when you first create an Index, it's best to start with a thumbnail image for every page.

  1. Hover over the title of a page or section within your Index.
  2. Click the gear-icon.
  3. Click the Media tab.
  4. Add a thumbnail image

Repeat this process for every page within your Index.

Note: In some templates, you can add a video thumbnail. For grid Index Pages, you should also add a thumbnail image, as these Index Pages don't use videos for the thumbnail tile.

Step 5 - Set the Index Page as your homepage (optional)

It's common to set the Index Page as a site's homepage so visitors can easily browse your content from a unique landing page. To do this, set the Index Page itself as the homepage, rather than a page within the Index.

  1. Hover over the Index Page title.
  2. Click the gear-icon.
  3. Scroll down in the Basic tab and click Set As Homepage
Note: It isn't possible to set a page or section within an Index as a site's homepage.

Step 6 - Style the Index Page

Your template determines the Index's style: grid, stacked, or slideshow. In the Style Editor, you'll find tweaks to help you customize how the Index looks. 

Grid

You can change the number or shape of the thumbnails, their padding, and how the page titles display, depending on your template. Use the links below to find the guide for your template's Index.

Stacked

You can change the fonts, navigation elements, and how page content displays. Options vary by template. Use the links below to find the guide for your template's Index.

Tip: See our additional tips for managing sections.

Slideshow

You can style page names and choose how visitors click through to a connected page. Options vary by template. Use the links below to find the guide for your template's Index.

Special URLs 

Some templates have a different URL for pages when they're viewed on the Index Page. Here's an example:

http://www.mydomain.com/#/page-title

The # symbol indicates that this page is in an Index Page. This URL helps search engines and social media sites recognize the page as part of an Index and not duplicated content.

You'll see this in the following templates:

  • Avenue
  • Flatiron
  • Marquee, Adversary, Alex, Eamon, Ginger, Mint, Shift (discontinued) - This stacked Index Page uses anchor links. As you scroll through the pages of the Index, the URL slug changes to the page on display.
  • Montauk, Julia, Kent, Om

Passwords and Index Pages

You can password-protect the main Index in its Page Settings.

Whether a password-protected sub-page displays in the Index depends on the Index style:

Grid and slideshow Indexes

  • The page's thumbnail displays normally. When visitors click through to the page content, they'll be prompted to enter the password for that page. 
  • To completely hide a password-protected page, remove it from the Index or add a password to your main Index Page as well. 

Stacked Indexes

You can no longer add a password to pages within a stacked Index. 

  • Drag the page out of the Index to set a password.
  • Once you've added a password to a page, you can't drag it into an Index.

If your sub-page already has a password:

  • The page's thumbnail image and content appears in the Index. 
  • The login prompt won't appear unless the visitor goes to the direct page URL.
  • If you delete the password, the password field will disappear.
  • If you drag the page out of the Index, you won't be able to drag it back in until you remove the password.

SEO and social sharing 

Because Indexes are collections of pages, search engines and social media sites interact with them differently than other pages in Squarespace. Search engines may direct visitors to pages within your Index, rather than the Index Page itself. On some templates, pages appear differently when viewed directly rather than through the Index Page.

If you share a page within an Index on social media, the site may display the Index Page instead of the specific page you're trying to share. Use these best practices to share a specific page:

  • Use the page's direct URL. If your page's URL includes a #/, remove that before sharing.
  • Add a thumbnail image and page description in the Index Page Settings
  • Demo pages contain a "noindex" tag that makes pages invisible to search engines. We recommend removing all demo content from your Index Page to remove this tag. 

Managing stacked Index sections

The Pages panel has an added feature that helps you move, add, and delete sections in stacked Indexes. To access this feature:

  1. From the Home Menu, click Pages.
  2. Click the Index Page.
  3. Hover over the top of the site preview and click Manage Sections.

stacked-index.png

You'll see a zoomed-out version of your Index, which you can use to more easily scroll through sections

  • Click and drag any section to rearrange it.
  • Use the + and - icons to add or remove sections.

To return to the Pages panel, click Back in the top-left corner.

Displaying other content

To display content from an unsupported page type within an Index, add a Regular Page to the Index. Then use the following methods to display the content on that Regular Page:

  • Blog posts - Add a Summary Block and connect it to a Blog Page.
  • Products - Add a Summary Block and connect it to a Products Page. You can also add individual products with the Product Block.
  • Gallery images - Add a Gallery Block. You can connect it to an existing Gallery Page or add images to it directly. You can also add individual Image Blocks.
  • Events - Add Calendar Blocks and select the collection to display.
  • Album tracks - Add Audio Blocks and add tracks to them directly.

You can also use the Archive Block to create a list of new blog posts, gallery images, products, and events.

Tip: Move collection pages (such as a Blog Page) to the Not Linked section so they don't show in your navigation.

Momentum

The Momentum template only supports Gallery Pages. To link to other content on your site, add a link to the description of any gallery image, or add pages to your Main Navigation so the links show in the navigation bar.

Replicate an Index in other templates

If your template doesn't support an Index Page or the Index Page style you like, there are ways to recreate the look of an Index on any template: 

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Using the Index Page