CMS list divided into dynamically generated categories

TLDR: How do I copy this page’s CMS functionality?

I can’t figure out how to dynamically generate a list page, which is sorted into categories, with category headlines, and then displays alphabetically items from a cms collection, that have been individually connected to a category.

I’m trying to create a “links” page with some bookmarks and a few words about each item, divided into categories. This is for my personal / portfolio page, to share things I commonly use that not all designers might know of. No sub pages (at first), just this one dynamic list page.
I can’t find a way to do this that doesn’t involve manually creating the categories, with added manual work each time I’d add a category.


Click triangle to see example of what I'm going for here

Sveinbjörns List of Links

– 3d – pulled from Category collection
Some 3d links description from Category collection

Spline Item title from Content collection
Spline is a design tool for 3d web experiences. item description from Content collection

Vectary is a web based 3d editor

– Web Development for Designers –

Readymag is a cms that focuses on typography

Webflow is an all-in-one site-builder and cms solution that’s designed and documented in such a clear way that anyone who can figure out InDesign can figure out Webflow… with a bit of time.

This is how I started:
I tried using one cms collection, which included a category field. I couldn’t make webflow sort by the category, and I also couldn’t figure out where to stick heading and description for each category. So I started again. This time I decided to use two cms collections. One for Link Category, one for Link Content.

Getting to the problem
I make a collection list, based off Link Category. From that I pull the name of the category and a one-line description. Then I want to put another collection list inside it that links to Link Content, I’d want to filter that content based the current category.
This way, I don’t have to make manual site edits if I add a category. It would update dynamically.

Here the problem presents itself:
If I’ve made a collection list (Categories Collection), and I put another collection list inside it, I can’t link to Content Collection. Webflow won’t link outside the first collection.

What I’ve seen suggested
I’ve seen some suggestions to “use filters”, but I can’t figure out what the method to use, as the examples linked are either gone, or the problem discussed was different to mine.

Weblow mentions linking within categories, I couldn’t make that work either.

It seems like this should be a common enough CMS endeavour, but I can’t figure it out.

The big question
Do you know of any examples that I can look at, or instructions, how to make this type of arrangement?

[this post has been edited a couple of times for clarity]

Here is my public share link:

The search-word I was looking for is “nested collection list”.

Here’s some info, this might solve it.

Nested Collection Lists on Webflow Blog

update: it did not.
I suspect this isn’t possible. Which would be pretttty weird.

hi @sveinbjorn to be able access nested collections your CMS items has to be published first and I see that you have didn’t publish anything yet so you can’t work with CMS logic.

There will be never identical problem to yours as everyone have different settings and needs but study of these solutions can give you an idea of principle how to solve specific issue you are facing.

Publishing! Gonna try that. Thank you Stan!

HI @sveinbjorn if your issue doesn’t persist feel free to close your request as solved

I published, which cleared up any errors, but the issue persists.
The video only demonstrates hand-picking things from a secondary list.
I’m looking for a cms solution, where I just write a post and don’t have to do any manual work.

I’m really just trying to copy this:

I’m still looking for any comparable solutions to study. I suspect Webflow can’t do this, but I haven’t had that confirmed.

And I’m quite surprised, really, it doesn’t seem like an awfully complicated thing to do, or have. It’s a throwback, it’s pretty much the design of the Yahoo! directory, the first big website on the internet, but with a more modern css wrapping.

So I’d like to leave this as unsolved, in case anyone has done something similar.

hi @sveinbjorn From your example in last comment is clear that you are trying create ToC (Table of Content) so when you searched this forum you have probably missed this

or if you use keywords ToC in Webflow in your favourite browser there is several articles or videos how to

Hope these articles and videos will help you to achieve your goals. has an amazing ToC, and your link will certainly help achieve that. But unfortunately it doesn’t solve the issue on the CMS side, finding a way to post to a single-page link collection categorised by topic.

I have to take a moment to thank you for your attention and help, Stan. I really appreciate it.

As it stands, I suspect that I could do this with a filter, if I accept that I can’t dynamically generate new categories, that I have to do that part by hand. It’s probably not the worst thing.

I can’t program for squat but I can still design the “if/then” sequence to create this in my head, so I’m a bit frustrated, as you can imagine.

I still want to leave this open, maybe it will notify me if this feature comes along in the next update. They implied as much in the post about nested collections, that the first version would be limited but it would keep growing.

Thanks again, Stan!

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