SharePoint is an amazing Customer Relationship Management platform and with this article, we have tried to explain the differences between a few terms from Information Architecture. Let’s begin with the SharePoint Sites and move upwards towards SharePoint Hubs and SharePoint Home Sites.
SharePoint Sites have been the main feature of SharePoint Information Architecture for Years because after all SharePoint is a collection of Sites. These sites are in turn collection of Subsites called webs which are a container of content, permission and customizations.
SharePoint Sites can have Subsites technically but that’s not modern and never will be. You should avoid having Subsites as well. In the Modern World, there are Team Sites and Communication Sites. Team Sites are more suitable for smaller membership and collaboration than broadcasting while with Communication sites focus is on broadcasting your message to a broader audience.
- Team Site: Most of the users contribute content.
- Communication Site: Only a few users contribute but a large number of readers.
Modern Team Sites usually got an Office Group or a Unified Group powering different features and tools behind it, communication site doesn’t have this. A communication Site can also have the following features but it is more common tor a Team site to have Yammer, Planner, Teams, Stream, Outlook Inbox and One Note.
SharePoint Hubs join together a number of related SharePoint Sites and are the keystones of Information Architecture in Modern SharePoint. This offers consistent branding and scopes things like news, shared top navigation, activity feeds and searches function for sites that are part of the Hub.
SharePoint Hubs are basically a collection of SharePoint Sites. Let’s take a look at how you can build a Modern Information Architecture:
- Create Sites as required by your departments or functions.
- Join the created Sites to one Hub.
- You can apply customizations if you want by running a Site Script.
- And there you have it, a bunch of useful sites connected together in a lightweight but pretty way.
In real life and real circumstances, you will have to answer a few questions about your content types, site structures and what to do with existing sites. Some issues or questions like these could be.
- Different sites will not share permissions by default.
- Top Navigation is not Security trimmed.
- Your theme will apply to all members of the hub but it can take some time.
- Experience of members that are members of multiple hubs is very disconnected.
- The common navigation that your hubs share is not extended to your sites running in Classic Mode.
SharePoint Home Sites:
Imagine a communication Site on Steroids or with superpowers, this is what SharePoint Home s. Promote Communication Sites, so everything about Communications Sites also applies here. You are given one Home Site per tenant but that situation is bound to change as Microsoft always refers to them in plural form i.e. Home Sites. What they can do is:
- Enables 1-click site access via the SharePoint Mobile App Home Button.
- Elevate the Site to be Official Organizational News Site.
- Has a Tenant-Wide Scope for Search i.e. your Search will provide results from everywhere.
- Connects that Home Site to your SharePoint Start Page.
A Home Site also have additional layout options. The main Content Area shows the basic stuff and the sidebar on the right shows your personalized Stuff.