How To Create Your Free Resource Library In Squarespace

Squarespace-Resource-Library

Today I'm going to show you how I put together my resource library here on Squarespace. Having a free resource library on your blog is a great place to keep all your content upgrades from past blog posts and it's a great way to get people to sign up for your newsletter. 

Below I have both video tutorials and written instructions explaining how I put together my resource library in Squarespace. I've broken down this tutorial into four different videos to keeps things short and to give you a breather in-between instructions. 

Full disclosure- this is my first video recording, like, ever so don't mind my terrible instructions, I promise I will eventually get better. 😂

Video #1 - Resource Library Intro

Video #2 - Resource Library Design

Video #3 - Designing Your Resource Library Cover page

Video #4 - Making It Functional

Error in video #4 - Please read

In this video I show you how to password protect your sign up page but I intended to show you how to password protect your resource library page where all of your content upgrades live. Do not password protect your sign up page since you want the public to see the page in order to sign up. Sorry for the confusion!


Why should YOU have a free resource library on your blog?

Having a resource library is a great way to house your past content upgrades from previous blog posts on a password protected page. It not only keeps everything in one spot but it's a great way to get people to sign up for your email list. How it works:

  1. Person see's your beautiful resource library landing page and decides to sign up with their email address.

  2. After they sign up an email is sent to them that you set up in your email marketing site (Convertkit, Mailchimp, etc).
  3. This email welcomes them to the library and includes the link to the library and the password so they can gain access.
  4. Always keep your library updated with content upgrades you've added to your blog posts.

I've been growing my library since I started my blog back in January of 2016. I always try to add a content upgrade to every blog post and I will then add it to my resource library. If you feel like being extra nice you could always throw in a few other freebies that aren't content upgrades. There's a few items in my resource library that I added just for fun, for example, all the downloads in my 'Printables' section I had already created for my other blog so I thought I would throw them into my resource library. They are still relevant to design and keep within my blog's niche. 


Pro tip: don't just add anything to your library, make sure it's relevant. For example, don't add a recipe printable to your library if your blog's niche is design. 


WHAT YOU WILL LEARN TODAY

  1. How to set up a password protected page in Squarespace.

  2. How to add your library content to your page.

  3. How to create a Squarespace landing page and connect Mailchimp to it.
  4. How to connect everything and make it functional.


Step #1

The very first thing you want to do is create a page that is 'not linked.'  To do this go to your sidebar menu in Squarespace and scroll down to the bottom where it says 'not linked' and then click the '+' button 

You then want to select the 'page' widget.

Don't forget to password protect this page! To do this click on the settings wheel on your resource library page.

Scroll down until you reach the 'password' form and enter a password. Remember this is the password that you will be sending to your subscribers so make sure it's not one of your usual passwords that you use on Facebook or anywhere else. 

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STEP #2

Now it's time to add your resource library items! Click 'edit' on the page and start adding in your images.

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Add 'image' widgets for every item you have. To add the images in a row, drag and drop the photos until they're lined up. I recommend watching video #2 if you're having some difficulty understanding this. 

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Pro tip: make sure all your images are the same size in each section so they fit nicely.


Under each image I add a 'download' button so it's crystal clear to your viewer how they get their freebie. To do this add a 'button' widget.

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Here are my button settings. I upload my freebie to Dropbox and copy the download URL and paste it into my button settings. Don't forget to do this important step!

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Even if you're just starting your library it's a good idea to get ahead of yourself and keep things organized and tidy. If the first thing you are adding to your library is a workbook then make sure to title your section 'Workbooks.' If the next item you add is a checklist then create a section called 'Checklists,' and so on. When it comes time to add more workbooks/checklists/etc you can add them to the appropriate section and continue to grow your resource library.

Here is a photo of what my library looks like to give you a better idea.


Step #3

Once your library is set up it's time to create a landing page to entice people to sign up. There is plenty of ways to do this, if you have Convertkit or Leadpages you can create a landing page with them, however, not everyone can afford all the bells and whistles especially if they're just starting out. Thankfully you can set up your page for free using a Squarespace cover page and a free Mailchimp account (or paid.)

Create a cover page in the 'not linked' section.

When you click on 'cover page' the image below will pop up. Click 'Change Layout' to view all the options and to pick a layout that best suites you. 

Squarespace-Resource-Library

I personally like the cover page called, 'Spotlight' so I chose that one. 

When you have your template selected hit the 'branding and text' option and the screen below will open.

You can choose whether or not you want to display your logo. Personally I decided against it. Enter in your headline and body copy then hit save. I also decided against showing the social icons, the reason why is I don't want my potential subscribers to get distracted with clickable links that will take them away from the sign up page. 

Next you'll want to edit the image with your own. Choose the 'Media' option from the menu.

Upload your photo and go back to the menu and choose 'action.'

Once you click on 'media' the default actions are in the image below. Follow the steps below to create a newsletter form and connect your Mailchimp account. 

First thing you want to do is delete the button text and trash the link that is there by default. 
I added the text 'I WANT IN!' and hit save.

Click 'edit form' and the pop up box below will appear. This is what shows up by default. 

Delete the 'demo form' text, the 'subject' form field and the 'message' form field. You only want the email form and the name form to be there. (If you only collect email addresses and not names then feel free to delete the name form as well.)

Now click on the 'advanced' button at the top right.

In the 'post-submit' section I like to add 'check your email for the password' so people know what to do next. Edit this section however you please :)

Last but not least you will want to connect your Mailchimp account. To do this click the 'Mailchimp' box at the bottom and it will prompt you to connect your account. Choose what 'list' you want your subscribers to go to and then hit 'save.'

Now you can edit your Squarespace landing page and add in whatever colours and fonts you wish. To do this go back to the menu and hit 'style.'

STEP #4

Now that you have your resource library and landing page created it's time to connect everything and make it functional. 

In your 'main navigation' you want to add a 'link' widget and name it whatever you like. Remember this will be sitting in your navigation menu for everyone to see so make sure it's named something obvious and clear. I have mine set to 'creative library.'

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Next you want to go back down to your 'not linked' section and click on the settings wheel on your 'sign up page' to bring up this panel.

Scroll down in the panel until you see the 'URL slug' and copy it. 
Now open your blog in a new tab and paste the 'URL slug' next to your domain. 

When you click enter it will bring up your landing page.

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Now copy the page URL and click the settings wheel on your resource library link in your main navigation.

Paste the URL you copied into the 'link' section and hit 'save.'

Ta-da! When you click on the resource library link in your navigation menu it will automatically take your readers to your landing page where they can sign up. 


Now that you understand how to create your resource library download my free checklist to make sure you have everything included and aren't forgetting anything important!

As usual if you have any questions feel free to get in touch!