SharePoint News Enhancements – March 2019

March 13, 2019
The original article is published on the Microsoft Tech Community SharePoint Blog.

SharePoint news is a content distribution system that works across personal, team and organizational news. News articles and links can be composed on browser or mobile platforms, and are easily surfaced in portals, Microsoft Teams, email, Microsoft Search and more.   Rich new capabilities will empower communicators to keep groups, departments, and divisions up to date easily.

Let’s dive into each feature.

News – audience targeting – You can influence what news articles and pages appear on your site by configuring what is visible to specific groups. Each person will have a unique without creating multiple audience-specific sites.   Audience targeting will be enabled in news, pages and other web parts so that you can define and target who best to reach with content and site experiences by using Office 365 Groups.

Learn how the Microsoft IT team used audience targeting to move more Microsoft portals to the modern SharePoint experience

News – organize. Within the news web part, you can now organize your news posts to appear in custom order. This means you can highlight high-value content knowing it is more visible among articles published on a site. Learn more in our support article.

Organize.jpgFigure 1 Controlling the news display sort order

Authoritative news – News can come from many different sites. But you might have “official” or “authoritative” sites for organization news. When these sites are specified as organization news sources, posts from these sites are interleaved throughout all news posts displayed for users on SharePoint home in Office 365, or via the news tab in SharePoint mobile. They are distinguished by a color block on the title as a visual cue.  Admins can manage news sources using simple PowerShell commands, referenced below.

 

OrgNews.pngFigure 2 Site showing authoritative organization-wide news

News notifications from followed sites – Starting in March 2019, users that follow sites will start to get notifications for any news posted on those sites. They will also get notifications when people they work with post news. It’s never been easier to stay up to date with information from key areas of your intranet.

Page templates.  You've created a great page, and you want to make it available for others to use as a starting point for their pages. Or, you need to create a page, but aren’t sure where to start.  Page templates can save time.   

Initially, we’ll ship three page templates – basic, text-centric and visual, as shown below.  You can also create your own templates from existing pages.  Once a page is saved as a template, it can be chosen from the Template gallery as users create pages and news.  Again, learn more in our support article.

Templates.pngFigure 3 SharePoint page templates

Try more and more of what SharePoint offers, and let us know what you think

We want to empower you and every person on your team to achieve more. Let us know what you need next. We are always open to feedback via UserVoice and continued dialog in the SharePoint community in the Microsoft Tech Community —and we always have an eye on tweets to @SharePoint. Let us know.

—Chris McNulty, senior product manager for Microsoft 365

Q: When is this all being released?

A: Our goal is to release all the items to Targeted Release customers by the end of March 2019.

Q: How can administrators manage authoritative news sources?
A: Your tenant admin will need to add sites to the organization news list of sites using PowerShell.  Here are some helpful commands.

Discuss this article in the Microsoft Technical Community.