13 January 2013

SharePoint 2013 Content Types

The CEO, Peter Kalmström, is a Microsoft certified SharePoint specialist. Peter has felt the need for a demo about Content types in SharePoint 2013, and here is his own introduction:
Peter Kalmstrom image
Content Types avoid repetition
When managing a SharePoint site you want to centralize the administration as much as possible, so that changes and additions are easily distributed and you don't have to repeat them many times. One way of achieving that is to use CSS files in SharePoint, just like you do on other websites, but you should also take a look at the Content Types.

Do like Microsoft!
Using SharePoint Content Types is a bit like using CSS for a website you only have to change in one place. In SharePoint Microsoft builds all of the inbuilt lists on Content Types, and any SharePoint administrator can do the same. For example, if you connect several Document Libraries with the same Content Type, you can handle updates in the Content Type instead of changing each Document Library separately.

Content Types at its best in 2010
Content Types were introduced in SharePoint 2007, and in SharePoint 2010 the use of Content Types as the basis for building page layouts was front-and-center in SharePoint Designer 2010.  I really liked the concept and published a video demonstration in the Tips section of the website to encourage people to use Content Type more.

More hidden in 2013
Unfortunately Microsoft has taken a step back in SharePoint 2013, when it comes to Content Types. They are still relevant, but they are more hidden and not as easy to start working with. You no longer find the Site Content Types under the Site Settings, as in SharePoint 2010, but they remain in SharePoint Designer 2013. There they can be used as before, but the change makes it a bit trickier.

I will however do my best to show how to get around some of the initial hurdles. Please watch the video demonstration below and give it a try!
I have used the Office 365 version of SharePoint 2013 in this tutorial.

This is the first in a series of video demonstrations for SharePoint 2013, to be published in the Tips section of the website. In total I have planned twelve more, to be released during the first quarter of 2013.

By Peter Kalmström
CEO and Systems Designer Business Solutions


  1. Wow. I'm an experienced developer trying to make a public website while learning Sharepoint on 2013/O365, and I have searched high and low for some of the information in your video. Since I normally do ASPNET and the like, this feels like trying to develop software with both hands tied behind my back. But, the tips in your video appear to give me what I've been looking for.

    1. Actually, I spoke too soon. On the final step, I created a page, but it will not allow me to select my page layout. In fact, the page layout button is gray/disabled.

    2. I am sorry to hear that you failed in the final step, and unfortunately I cannot help you with a short answer here. This needs to be tested. I will come back here if I find the reason for the disabled layout button. And please, tell us if you find the solution yourself!

  2. Hello,
    i am a little puzzled about content types in sharepoint 2013, here is my issue basically i created a new content type and added new columns to it, the I associate it with my custom page layout but after trying it out I realized that I used a wrong field so I went back to my content type and tried to delete the column i don't need and add the new one but when again i preview my page layout there is still the old field and not the new one. I don't understand what I am doing wrong.. could you please help me trying to figure this out? thank you

  3. I am sorry you did not succeed, Davide, and from your description I unfortunately cannot say why it failed. But it seems that SharePoint 2013 is very slow in updating content types, so maybe the issue is solved now?