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Help Your Readers Index Your Blog By Date

One of the most useful accessories for listing posts, in a blog, is the Archives retrieval gadget.

Titled "Blog Archive" in "Add a Gadget", the archive gadget provides an automatically updated index of all blog posts, sequenced by date. It is an enhanced version of the first accessory for Blogger blogs, provided when the blog home page was previously no more than the most recent post.

The original Blogger blog was no more than a sequence of posts, strung together, one post at a time.

The "Archives" gadget, that replaced "10 Previous Posts", was provided to index the posts.

Archives, unlike a label index or a linklist, requires no updating. Each post, as published, is automatically indexed by the Archives gadget.

The gadget has 3 display modes.

  1. Dropdown Menu
  2. Flat List
  3. Hierarchy

The most useful option in Archives, "Show Post Titles", only works in Hierarchy display - even though both it and "Show Oldest Posts First" appear to be offered for all 3 modes.

This blog displays Archives in Hierarchy mode, with "Show Post Titles" enabled. You'll see the Archives gadget, in this blog, halfway down the sidebar, and titled "Contents".

Hierarchy mode, when displaying titles, opens to match page display date.

In Hierarchy mode, and with "Show Post Titles" enabled, the Archives gadget automatically opens, with an expanded titles list, to match the date of the top post in the page. This makes it functionally similar to the classical "10 Previous Posts" accessory, from long ago.

Right now, and with this post being the most recently published, the "Contents" gadget opens with an August 2015 title list. If you were to open my earlier post about making a static main page for the blog, you would see July 2015 open, in "Contents" - since that post was published in July 2015.

The most recent post in "Home Page" (right now) is from July, 2015.

Since my earlier post about making a static main page for the blog is (right now) the most current entry in the "Home Page" label set, a "Home Page" label search will open "Contents" to "July 2015", also.

If I were to publish a new post to the "Home Page" label, that would change. Similar index page lists would produce differing results.

Other options are available, to suit the blog.

Other gadget options include the date grouping (monthly, weekly, or daily), and the date format (a variety of displays). These options appear to affect all display modes.

The gadget has 3 display modes.

  • Dropdown Menu
  • Flat List
  • Hierarchy

And it appears to have 2 options, selectable for each mode.

  • Show Post Titles
  • Show Oldest Posts First

The 2 options only work in Hierarchy mode.

The date archives retrieval gadget is a useful component in a dynamic retrieval blog strategy. Owners of smaller blogs might complement the archives date index, with an archives title index.


Dave said…
I am trying to make the "search this blog" work. I want to tag or have list of posts maybe as many as 300 posts

Configure Text List
Number of items to show in list
Leave blank to show all items
Add List Item

I don't know how to add a list item, if I just add a title nothing shows
Chuck Croll said…
Hi Dave,

Thanks for the question.

If you are seeing "Configure Text List", you added a "List". You need to select "Link List" ("Add a Gadget" above "List").

The latter selection will give you
Configure Link List
New Site Name (enter title here)
New Site URL (enter URL here)

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