Navigation Tips to Improve Your Website

Demosphere Navigation Module

Help your members navigate your website with ease by using Demosphere’s content navigation module. This tool is designed to enhance your website visitor’s overall experience. Visitors browse the website using the tabs and dropdown menu items found within your site. 

Website admins can add menus to any container within the site. The Demosphere graphics team will typically setup the initial top level menus during the design process.

To edit the main navigation content from your homepage,  hover over the right side of the module and the edit tools will appear: 

Edit Navigation

 

A new window will open titled Edit Menu. The default tab, manage navigation links & menus, is where you will work to add the departments that may have been previously built within the site map. Click on the green add item button located below the menu display preview, within the menu builder container.

Add Navigation Items

 

Menu Options:

A new window opens titled add new menu item. There are three item type choices to choose from:

  • The Link option is best used when adding menu items that you want to be clickable and redirect to a page outside of your website
  • The SubMenu option is best used when adding menu items that you do not necessarily want to be clickable, but have dropdown menus below
  • The Copy from Site Map option allows you to choose from any of the departments available within your sitemap. Keep in mind, if your Site Map changes, you will also need to update your navigation menu items

Navigation Options

 

When adding menu items from your site map, select the department to build your menu, and then click the green + button to the left of the department or sub-department that you want to add to the navigation module. Save your changes and proceed with adding the next menu items:

Navigation from Site Map

 

 

Cloning Menus:

The cloned instances tab is where you can easily clone the navigation module to additional locations on your website. I recommend cloning the navigation module to all design template locations. Click on the green clone to additional location button

Clone Nagivation

 

Scroll down until you see design templates, and click on the templates that have a green + next to it. If there is not a green + next to the design template then that means the navigation module item has already been cloned to that design template. Save the additional location.

designtem

Finally, you will be redirected to the new location to place the menu on the page. An orange ‘orphaned content’ box appears at the bottom of the screen, hover over the item and use the yellow drag icon to drag the module item to it’s new location. All departments that use the design template will be updated.

Furthermore, your website can have unlimited navigation modules. Feel free to play around with adding vertical navigation menus to the side containers of your interior pages! Remember, you can always set the publishing options to “pending” to see how things will look before they’re live!

Lastly, navigation modules are full responsive, so they’ll look great on any device!

Happy navigating!

 

 

Demosphere Tip of the Week: Content Rotators and Image Sizing

Content rotators are a great way to to showcase articles, pictures, and videos on your website in a slideshow type fashion.  This week we’ll explore the different settings and features available for content rotators as well as some tips on using correctly sized images to keep your website looking sharp!

Content Rotators:

To add a new content rotator to your Demosphere website, go to the page where you’d like it to appear and click the green “Add Content” button in the desired content area.  Next, select the “Content Rotator” type on the dialog to add your rotator onto the page:

Content Rotator

After selecting the “Content Rotator” button a new screen will appear where you can configure the settings for the rotator.  Assign the rotator a title and adjust various options for the rotator under the Display Options tab.  Please see below for information on the different rotator display options:

  • Transition Interval:  Set the number of seconds each piece of content will be displayed before cycling to the next piece.
  • Responsive vs. Basic Rotator: A responsive rotator will adapt content in the rotator to be best displayed across varying screen sizes (e.g. a smart phone vs. a laptop screen).  A basic rotator will not do this and might look out of place when viewed on a mobile device.  For this reason, we recommend always using the responsive rotator type and it is the default setting when adding a rotator.
  • Height:  Set the maximum height (in pixels) for the rotator.  This can be helpful when you want the rotator to be within certain size limits on your website for design purposes.
  • Display Nav Bar:  Toggle on/off the navigation circles in the top left corner of the rotator that convey which piece of content is currently displayed on screen.  It also allows the user to jump to a different piece of content by clicking on one of the empty circles.
  • Size Images Based on:  This setting allows images to be sized based on the width or height when in the rotator.  We recommend trying both ways to see what works best for your design layout and personal preferences.  Choosing the Height option will keep the full height of the image in place while adding some padding to the width so the image does not get skewed from its original dimensions.  Choosing the Width option will keep the full width of the image while shaving some of the top/bottom of the image to keep the original dimensions in place.  For additional details, please see the image sizing section below.
  • Show Article Summaries: Toggle on/off an overlay of text from the beginning of an article.
  • Thumbnail Options: Choose to have thumbnails for the content in your rotator on the bottom, left, or right side of the rotator.  You can also choose to have no thumbnails as well.

Content Rotator

Once the options are set up and the rotator is saved, you are ready to add content to the rotator.  Hover your mouse over the empty rotator and click the green plus sign to add a new article, image, or piece of raw code content.  Once a piece of content is added to the rotator, you can move, edit, or delete the content by clicking on the orange folder icon while your mouse is hovering over the rotator:

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Image Sizing:

One of the easiest way to ensure a professional looking website is to upload and display images that have appropriate dimensions.  Let’s say you have an area on your website that is wide but not very tall.  If you were to upload an image that was tall but not wide into this area, it would not fit very well.  The system would either zoom in on the image to fill up the width of the area or add padding to both sides of the image so it fits:

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However if an image is uploaded to this same area that has roughly the same width it will displayed in a much more appealing manner.  The image will not have to have any padding added or be zoomed in to fit the area’s dimensions:

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This brings up the question of “How do I know the dimensions of an area on my website?”.  If you are using the Chrome browser, you can right click on a content area and choose the ‘Inspect’ option.  This will bring up the developer console as well as show the dimensions for the area you are inspecting:

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In this example, we can see that the content area is 847.5 pixels wide, so you’d want to have your images be ~850 pixels wide.  The height of the content area can vary depending on the height of the image, so the image height can be flexible in this case.

If you don’t have Chrome as your browser, most modern browsers have similar developer features for inspecting a website.  You can also use trial and error to upload an image, see how it looks, and try another image in its place to see if it works better.  Keep in mind you’ll want to use an image with the same general dimensions or shape as the content area you are adding the image into.  If the area is tall and narrow, use an image that is also tall and narrow for the best appearance possible!

Lastly, there are several tools and applications you can use to help you manipulate your images. Our favorite free online resource is pixlr.com/express – give it a try!

Tip of the Week: Tie-Patterns to Streamline League Scheduling

Demosphere understands that in the world of league scheduling, it is crucial to have robust and user-friendly tools to handle a variety of complex scenarios. We have created a proprietary tool we call a “tie pattern” to refer to the blueprint of how games for a specific division will be scheduled by the system. The tie pattern will determine the layout of scheduled games within a division across the game dates that have been entered into the system.

Demosphere has been building a robust library of tie patterns for many years to provide our clients with a great deal of pre-designed patterns. These can be easily assigned to a division to meet the scheduling needs for most events.

Tie-Patterns:

Each tie pattern has been carefully constructed to ensure a well balanced schedule with respect to team match ups, start times, home vs. away games and location for each team in the division across the entire season/event.

If you are taking advantage of Demosphere’s league scheduling tools, you can easily access the tie patterns that have been setup within your account. First, navigate to the Scheduling Administration element and click on the tie patterns link under the Setup section:

league scheduling

Clone Library:

Furthermore, if you are in need of a unique tie pattern that is not listed, you can access the robust library by clicking on the “Clone Library”. Here is where you can find hundreds of tie patterns that have been previously setup to handle all kinds of league scheduling scenarios:

league scheduling

The Clone Library houses the most requested tie patterns across all Demosphere clients. To find what you’re looking for, first enter the number of teams and/or games in the division to narrow the results. There is a brief description of each tie pattern to help you choose the best one for the division.

league scheduling

 

If for any reason you don’t find what you’re looking for, please email support@demosphere.com. We can help you locate the best tie pattern and/or create a new one for you if needed!

Demosphere Tip of the Week: Scorekeeping and Team Advancement

Looking for the best workflow to handle scorekeeping and advance your teams to the next round of a tournament/event? Follow these easy steps below:

  1. Scorekeeping: First enter all scores for the first round of games using one of these options:
    1. Use the PhoneItIn mobile option (yourdomain/phoneitin), or call-in option, using the game # and season PIN. Generally, this is the best workflow for team admins reporting scores from the field.

      Scorekeeping
    2. Click “Edit all blank scores link” from the Scheduling Admin element to edit all scores at once. This is the typical workflow for Site Admins looking to update scores for all games:

      Scorekeeping
    3. Edit all scores for an entire division at once – this is a good option for either Site Admins or Division Managers:

      Scorekeeping
  2. Scorekeeping and Team Advancement: 

    Use the steps below to enter scores and advance teams to subsequent rounds:

    1. Click on Elements and choose Scheduling Administration
    2. Select your season
    3. Under the Audit Reports section, click on the Scorekeeping and Team Advance link:

      Team Advance
    4. Choose your age group.  The divisions in that age will load at the bottom of the screen.  You will see division names and a list of all game dates.  Each cell under the game date shows the number of games on that date (any value in parentheses lists the number of games missing scores).
    5. To enter scores for any game, click on the number for the game date in question, and the games on that date will load, with an option to enter scores:

      Team Advance
    6. To advance teams to the next round of play, click the blue plus sign next to the name of the placeholder in the schedule.

      Team Advance

      1. The system will make its best guess to pre-select the team for you from the dropdown.
      2. If the system cannot make a determination (ex. In the case of a “wildcard” placeholder) then you can select the appropriate team from full list of teams.
      3. If the system chooses the wrong team, then you can modify it by selecting the right team from the dropdown.
      4. Lastly, if any of the prior rounds have scores missing, the system will warn you and prompt you to enter all prior scores before advancing teams to the next round.
      5. Once you are satisfied with the selected teams press the Save button.
    7. Notes:
      1. Even if you have chosen a team and saved it, you can always use the blue plus sign again to replace it with a different choice for that placeholder as needed.
      2. The team advance feature does not automatically choose the team and update the information publicly until you verify that the prior scores have been entered properly. Similarly, you should confirm all tie-breakers have been taken into account (especially ones the system may not know about such as coin flip, PK’s etc). However, once you review and approve the teams, the schedule will be updated automatically on your public website upon saving the screen above.

Finally, if you need additional support, please contact the Demosphere Support Team:

Chat: accessed from your Admin dashboard
Email: support@demosphere.com
Phone: (800) 949-9440, Option 2

Discounts to Create? Demosphere Can Help!

Looking to provide registration discounts for your members? Demosphere can help! With Demosphere’s flexible online registration system, there are several options.

One option is to set up a discount code within the season settings. You can then communicate this code to members to enter during registration.  Another option is to create a unique discount for a specific player or family.  This option will automatically apply the discount during registration. 

The steps below outline how this process works:
  1. From the main dashboard, navigate to the RosterPro > Household Management tab. Search for the name of the household in question.  Click on the name of the household in the “Household Name” column to go the the Household’s profile:1
  2. While on the “Household Information & Members” tab, scroll down and click on the green “Add New Discount” button2
  3. Enter in the following items in the dialog screen:
    • Title – the name of the discount (this will appear on the registration receipt)
    • Amount – this will be the amount the household will receive off of their registration
    • Associated To (optional) – the member of the household to whom the discount should apply (if no member is chosen, the discount can be applied to any family member)
    • Remark (optional) – notes or details you’d like to document (this will appear on the registration receipt)
    • Season – choose the relevant season.  Please note, you must associate the discount with a particular season for it to apply.
    • Send email checkbox – check this box if you’d like to email a notification to the admin(s) of the household.3
  1. When the household registers for the selected season, the discount will be automatically applied to the registration.  The household will see it listed in step 2.7 and 5.1:

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Demosphere’s goal to create the most robust, customizable and user-friendly registration system for youth sports organizations. Contact us today to learn more: sales@demosphere.com!