Page types

There are a number of types of pages that are used repeatedly on MDN. This article describes these page types, their purpose, and gives examples of each and templates to use when creating a new page.

There are three broad categories of page types on MDN, though some page types fall into more than one category.

  • Reference pages describe the details of something, and are organized according to the structure of the thing described.
  • Guide pages describe how to do something or use something, and are organized based on the goals of the reader.
  • Navigation pages exist primarily to provide links to other pages, usually about related topics.

How to use the templates

When creating a new page (e.g. you might have reached the New document page via the New sub-article menu option, or by following a link to a page that doesn't exist yet created by a {{domxref()}} macro call), you can ensure that you've used the right page structure/contents by using one of our page templates (see the sections below).

These page templates don't make much sense as published pages, but if you view them in edit view you'll see that they contain a lot of helpful comments, placeholders, and hints detailing how to fill in the missing information and create your page.

At the top of each template you'll find a section entitled Remove before publishing — this contains information on how to fill in the page title, slug, sidebar menu, and tags (e.g. information that doesn't actually appear in the body of the article). You need to delete this section after you've followed the instructions in it, before the page can be considered finished.

To use a template, currently you just have to copy the source of the template out of its edit view and paste the contents into the New document page you are creating your new article in. In the future, we hope to update the editor UI to allow you to choose templates directly from there.

API landing page

An API landing page provides an overview of what a particular API does, then contains links to the documentation for each of the interfaces, globals, functions, etc. offered by the API. It does not link directly to specific methods or properties within the API's classes, except in the context of the overview text. It is primarily a navigation page, but also functions as an at-a-glance reference page for the API.

Example

Template

API reference page

Note: Also known as an Interface landing page.

An API reference  page lists all the methods, properties, events, and so forth, belonging to a particular interface or class. It provides an overview of what the class or interface does or is used for, and gives links to the documentation for each of these members. It is more granular than an API landing page, which typically links to multiple API reference pages.

Example

API reference subpage

An API reference subpage is a child of an API reference page. It documents a single member in detail.

Examples

HTML element reference page

An HTML reference page lists all the attributes that are available on an HTML element, explains the element's purpose and usage, and provides examples, browser compat information, and other important data.

Example

SVG element reference page

An SVG reference page lists all the attributes that are available on an SVG element, explains the element's purpose and usage, and provides examples, browser compat information, and other important data.

Example

CSS feature reference page

A CSS reference page lists all the available syntax for a CSS feature such as a selector or property, and explains the feature's purpose and usage. It also provides examples, browser compat information, and other important data.

Examples

HTTP header reference page

An HTTP header reference page lists all the available directives that an HTTP header can contain, and explains the header's purpose and usage. It also provides examples, browser compat information, and other important data.

Example

Conceptual page

A conceptual page is a guide page that explains or teaches something. Generally, if a page contains primarily prose, and doesn't fall into another page type, it's probably a conceptual page. An extended discussion of a topic might be spread across multiple conceptual pages, and linked using Next and Previous macros.

Examples

Glossary page

A glossary page contains a brief explanation of a term, topic, or concept. The first paragraph should be a simple, self-contained description of the term, no more than a couple sentences. This can be followed by links to further information in the Learn more section. If the page grows to more than a screenful or so, it's too long, and should be converted to a conceptual page. See How to write and reference an entry in the glossary for more details.

Examples

Landing page

A landing page serves as a menu, of sorts, for its subpages, and is therefore primarily a navigation page. A landing page layout is typically used for the root page of a tree of pages about a particular topic. It opens with a brief summary of the topic, then presents a structured list of links to its subpages, and optionally, additional material that be useful to the reader.

The list of subpages can be generated automatically using the templates SubpagesWithSummaries, SubpageMenuByCategories, or LandingPageListSubPages. However, in more complex cases, the list may need to be created (and maintained!) by hand.

Examples

Document Tags and Contributors

 Contributors to this page: chrisdavidmills, jswisher, bunnybooboo
 Last updated by: chrisdavidmills,