Managing content blocks in articles

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24 Comments

  • Cailee Rye

    Hi! We are super excited about this feature.

    We have run into an issue though! When updated a content block, our understanding is that all articles would automatically update. While this is true, all of the articles with the content block in them are moved to "In Progress" and we must then go to every single article and publish the update. 

    This really seems to defeat the benefit of having a content block in articles to save time. Is there an update coming for this??

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  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Caillee, 
    I'm happy to hear that you are excited about the content blocks' functionality.

    As you rightly observed at the moment content blocks are closely following article publishing workflow, which means that if they are updated the articles that contain them move to "In progress" state and have to be republished for the change to be visible in Help Center. Hopefully, the recent addition of a content block list allows to easily see the articles that blocks are being placed in, the bulk publishing in the article list should also make the task of republishing slightly easier.

    In the future, we plan to separate content block and article publishing workflows so that the changes in the blocks won't be impacting the states the articles are in. We will start working on it as one of the first improvements after the content blocks launch.

    -1
  • Darcy Peters

    Do you have any word on when you might add images, by chance? I've started creating part 1, part 2, etc. of content blocks with the same subject so I can insert images in between. Since there's no notes functionality, I'm having to remember which images go where. 

    I really look forward to a potential addition!

    2
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Darcy Peters

    We'll start working on adding images to Content Blocks at the beginning of 2022!

    3
  • Anna

    Hi guys,

    This is a great feature; however I was under the impression that once we edited the content block, it would update and publish across all Knowledge Bases. As mentioned by Cailee, all of the articles with the content block in them are moved to "In Progress" and we must then go to every single article and publish the update. 

    This defeats the purpose of streamlining the content. As someone who runs 25 Knowledge Bases, it would be great if we could develop a function to "update and publish" all in one go.

    Can you let us know when something like this will be rolled out?

    Thanks!

     

    4
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi, 

    Solving this problem is definitely on our minds, but unfortunately, I don't have any timelines just yet. 

    1
  • Jordan Dayton

    Are there any plans to allow us to create raw html or "source code" content, which is currently available for articles? We use some custom HTML at the top of each of our articles to add some visual flair (for different types of articles. It would be nice to edit source code for these content blocks.

    2
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Jordan Dayton, We'll be working on adding the raw HTML view for Content blocks this quarter. If you are interested in our roadmap for Knowledge management it's available here.

    0
  • Jeff Bistrong

    I don't see the "tasks" option as mentioned in this article.....

     

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  • Dave Dyson
    Zendesk Community Manager
    Hi Jeff, 
     
    As shown at the top of this article, managing content blocks requires our Suite or Guide Enterprise plans – it's likely that you're on a lower subscription plan. You can see you plan level and, if you're the account owner, make changes here: Viewing and managing plan subscriptions
    1
  • Patrick Morgan

    Hi! I'm enjoying the Content Blocks feature—it's really encouraging me to think of new and better ways to organize related content.

    That said, one thing I'd love to see improved is how the blocks appear and behave in the WYSIWYG editor and the Source Code editor. For example:

    1) If my cursor is in the WYSIWYG editor above a content block, I cannot get use my "down arrow" key to move the cursor below the block (the same happens moving from below a block to above it). I can use my mouse to relocate the cursor, but that's not a great experience—especially when I'm reviewing or editing an article with several content blocks.

    2) If I'm performing any extra styling or other actions in the Source Code editor, there is no indication that a content block has been added to an article. I get that this is probably injected after the source code is read, but it would be a big help to see a placeholder so I know where within the source code the content block will appear in the WSYIWYG editor.

    Additionally, there are times when I've added a content block in the WSYIWYG editor, opened the Source Code editor, and found that all or some of the source code does not appear. The content block has some sort of effect on how the source code displays in the editor. (Happy to provide images/links in a support chat)

    1
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Patrick Morgan,

    It's great to hear that you see potential in content blocks, and thanks a lot for all the feedback you provided. All of your observations are right, there are consequences of how we've implemented rich text formatting in articles and blocks (they use different technologies, which are not necessarily compatible). One of our main focuses in 2022 is to unify this experience and make the work with blocks more seamless (eg. navigating with arrow down between blocks and non-blocks) you can track them here under every card that says something about "editor". The first improvements - new editor for content blocks and source code editor for blocks should land very soon :) 

    0
  • Patrick Morgan

    Katarzyna Karpinska Cool! Thanks for the update and REALLY cool public roadmap.

    0
  • Andrew Brook

    This is an excellent feature and I just started using it in our KB (where everything displays fine) but when I look at the list of content blocks in the tasks area they all say they are being used by 0 articles (and none show in the sidebar) even if that isn't the case. Is there some sort of setting or permission somewhere that might be interfering with that?

    1
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Andrew Brook,

    Thank you for your kind feedback. We know that the counts of the articles where the content blocks are being used atm can be confusing. We are working on making it easier to understand right now and we expect to have some changes to it in the next few weeks. 

    0
  • Boris Fernandez

    Hello

    Is there any update about the lack of image support in the block feature ? 

    0
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi Boris Fernandez

    We are actively working on this feature and expect to launch it later this year. 

    0
  • Mariana Cañavera H.

    Hi!

    Do Content Blocks have an influence on the search results?

    1
  • Susann Philbrook

    Hello, It's mid 2022. Content blocks should not create "In Progress" drafts that need to be manually published. If you have used a single content block in the 200 article max, that is 200 articles that need to be republished. I noticed the first comment on this blog reply which said that the first thing you were going to work on was separating the workflows (that was July 2021).

    Recently ZenDesk made a change to content blocks which created hundreds of article needing to be republished across multiple brands. Plus, whatever the ZenDesk enhancement had to do with, it stripped out formatting in many of the content blocks which we also had to fix manually, again creating hundreds of articles needing to be republished. This is very time consuming and defeats the idea of edit a piece of text that is automatically distributed among every place it is used. That should not require any extra effort to a published article.

    ZenDesk needs to create a method of automatically republishing articles when there is an edit to a content block.

    Also, there were replies to this blog that images would be allowed (how about better editing tools)?

    Can you provide an update on when these features will be upgraded/fixed?

    1
  • Casey Birkholz

    Agree with the above comment and adding a critical point - sure, it's possible to bulk publish 30 at a time (the advice I got in my ticket). However, we can't blindly do that without inadvertently publishing articles we had in progress prior to Zendesk's systemic update. My team had to manually check 466 articles one at a time to make sure we didn't publish something that is pending legal review, SME review, was halfway done, etc. 

    1
  • Susann Philbrook

    Exactly part of our problem with content blocks. We have 5 brands for a total of over 3,000 articles. This was a nightmare due to the ZenDesk change that caused so many In Progress (draft) articles. Plus having to review each content block and fix the formatting that was stripped out which also caused another large amount of In Progress articles after fixing the content block formatting.
    This really is an issue.

    0
  • Lisa Sedlak

    I added a content block under a video I had embedded. The video disappeared. 

    As mentioned above, when I go to the HTML to manually add the video back, I cannot see the content block HTML to add the video above it. 

    0
  • Marco Esposito

    hi, how can I bulk publish the articles that contain a content block I have just updated?

    I have a content block in 34 articles

    I can't see a way to mark them and bulk Publish them.

     

    Also, I would recommend putting at the top of this article a note saying that you have to publish the articles every time there's an update in the content block. It's not clear or mentioned at all in the article. I did changes several weeks ago and realising now that the articles are not up to date.

     

    thanks!

    1
  • Katarzyna Karpinska
    Zendesk Product Manager

    Hi All, 

    Sorry for being absent here for a while :) I'll try to answer the questions one by one.

    - Mariana Cañavera H. I assume you mean the search results in Help Center? If so, then content blocks are being searched as a part of an article. No changes to the behavior whatsoever.

    - Susann Philbrook, Casey Birkholz I'm sorry for the additional work the recent change to CB editor caused, it was necessary for us to implement it to unlock further enhancements (like images, tables, custom components etc.). I also understand your frustration with the need to republish the articles after this change was implemented. We are working on changing this behavior right now and hope to have it fixed in Q3. The work on images in CBs is also full-steam ahead.

    - Lisa Sedlak We have a current technical limitation that we are working towards removing, where inserting the CB into the article "slices" the content of an article in the source code view in parts. You can still see the source code of all the parts of the articles if you put a cursor in them. I'm however surprised by what you are saying about the video disappearing. If it still happens please let me know I'd like to investigate it. 

    - Marco Esposito there is no easy way to filter by a CB in the manage article list at the moment so bulk publishing may be tricky. You can always publish all the articles that have been recently updated. Or you can open all the articles where the block is placed in from the sidebar in the manage content block list and publish them manually. As mentioned above we are currently working on the solution to automatically publish changes content blocks without moving articles into the "in progress" state. As for the supposedly missing information in the article, I believe it's clearly captured here.

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