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CMS Collection page. 55 different pages?

Hey guys,

I’d love some advice regarding the CMS.

So my client has around 55-65 Portfolio Projects that he wants to showcase. Now initially I thought they would all look the same so I can easily just make 1 " CMS project template page" and then I’d just get the right images from the CMS right?

But apparently, he wants each project page to look different (I know I should’ve asked him more about that before…) Meaning that each project page has a different amount of images in different sizes & in different orders…

Now I’m sure that you’re aware that once you have a CMS page. If you make a change to one page (let’s say add 3 more lightboxes) then all the other 55 CMS pages will get those 3 extra lightboxes as well even if you don’t want them…

I’ve added some examples so you can see it better. So as you can see each page really looks different…

I tried working with “Conditional visibility” but that can get really messy since there are 55-65 pages…

Now my question would be. Is there a smart way to fix this issue? or do I have to build 55-65 individual pages manually…?

It’s possible to have various templates for one collection, principally designing those in the same page layout and using conditional visibility as you envisioned. It’s possible to find great ways to build a lot of different things. You can also have switches filds and options field where your client can chose a different layout, then you’ll use those data together with condi visibility to make different things happen.

Now you won’t have the flexibility of 65 different pages but… every problem has a DESIGN solution and design here doesn’t mean graphic design, but rather “conception”. There’s decisions to take to make the site happen inside of a budget and to dimension future efforts for maintenance. Your client may be open to hear those things and meet you in-between.

For example, he should be able to understand that 65 different pages don’t make sense. that “variety” is achieved way under that number. Also price: make me design a multi layout cms system that’s complex and offer some variety and I’ll invoice 5 days for the task. But 65 manually rich-design pages? At best I can do 3 a day, do the maths.


Sorry if this is overly simplistic in relation to your client’s needs, but would Rich Text Blocks not give you what you need if it’s simply for text and images?

No because each image needs to be in a Lightbox with a hover state…

Ahh ok, sorry for misunderstanding.

Thanks for the elaborate explanation Vincent!

A more technical question now. Will there be a difference in site speed/ website “size” when I create 55 individual pages as supposed to 1 Collection page template existing of 55 pages?

Hello @AjT,

@PixelGeek has a great tutorial on how to achieve multiple layouts for cms collection pages

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Static page vs dynamic page?

Technically, a dynamic page could take longer to load because when called it has to call the content for the page to be build dynamically, i.e. on demand. However, the call part is very insignificant compared to what the page has to load, in your case quite a few of photos if I understand well. So technically I would say there’s no difference.

Now, realistically, absolutely zero difference as Webflow uses a tech called varnish to publish pages “as flat”, meaning it either generates all the pages upfront, or caches the pages as they’re being generated by the first visitor. So on a Webflow CMS site, the CMS pages are most likely… static pages.

There must be exceptions, there’s elements that need to be changed or refreshed regularly, such as ecommerce pages with stock info, cms pages with lists order set to random… maybe those pages have some sort of refresh rate.

In a case or another you shouldn’t be worrying about wether a static page is more efficient than a CMS one. And it’s always OK — and easy — to test that if you want to be sure :slight_smile: Let me know!

Thanks Vincent! Much appreciated :slight_smile:

Hi @vincent, just a correction, you mentioned " Technically, a dynamic page could take longer to load because when called it has to call the content for the page to be build dynamically, i.e. on demand."

All Webflow published sites are published as flat files and are distributed via CDN, there is no dynamic content being retrieved from the CMS, that content has already been rendered for the site…

For example, all of the assets for a blog post, text, images etc and html have all been rendered and distributed on CDN as flat files so that they are downloaded at the same speed as a static page.

This page cache is updated every 12 hours (for manual sorting or filtering of collection lists based on time or fields with dates) or when the site is manually published.

From a speed perspective, a dynamic page can be just as fast as a static page, with static pages the design time needed to create 55 different page layouts is probably the bottleneck.

Still, using dynamic templates is usually faster to create a template with a base layout that will have common layout elements for all 55 items, then use conditionality visibility to show or hide different elements on the template page.

55 different conditions are a lot of conditions to use in conditional visibility, so I agree the maintenance might be a bit confusing at times.

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Yes, that’s what I mention just after and why I use the word “technically” :smiley:

Valuable precise info, thanks!

My opinion as well.

Thanks for all the precisions!

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Adding lightbox functionality to rich text images is trivial.