Content modeling

When to stop breaking down your content types (chunking)?

Break-down of a cake
Break-down of a cake

How granular is granular enough? You can break down content types all the way down into sentences, words, however, when should you stop?

The answer will depend on the use case. But simply put, if it can be reused, the editor should have the ability to reuse it. If the editor needs to start copying and pasting content, then the content type should be broken down further. 

A great indicator of this is also the associated metadata and taxonomies. Look at your block of text and try assigning taxonomy terms to individual paragraphs. Are they the same or at least similar? Are they different? If they vary widely, consider breaking down the content type further as you are addressing different things within one content block. 

The opposite is also true. You might end up with a very granular content model with a complex assembly model. Try to simplify it by comparing taxonomy terms and you might discover that you can combine content types to simplify content operations. 

Always try to think about the editors. They will be spending most of the time working with the content so make sure the editor doesn’t encounter a lot of unnecessary configuration, nesting and content creation friction in general. 

💡 When to stop breaking down your content types (chunking)? In short:

  1. Use taxonomies to determine if a content type should be chunked (broken down) further
  2. Create a universally usable content type for reusable chunks
  3. Combine content types if the mostly share the same metadata/taxonomies
  4. Simplify content creation for editors