How to Add a Searchable Resource Library to a BuddyBoss Community Site

BuddyBoss is the go-to plugin for adding courses and online communities to a WordPress website.

Many online course creators and community sites need to provide resources to their users for learning or for engaging with the community. These resources might be downloadable files, embedded audio and video, or links to resources on third-party websites.

In this article, we’ll reveal the easy way to provide resources to learners and community members by using the Document Library Pro plugin by Barn2. The Document Library Pro plugin lets you add a searchable resource library to any BuddyPress community or course website.

Let’s put everything into context before we begin.

Why Add a Resource Library to BuddyBoss?

Although the BuddyBoss platform comes with tons of online course creation features out of the box, it doesn’t have a dedicated way to create a WordPress resource library to share with learners or members.

A resource library is simply a collection of files, audio, video, website URLs, guides, and downloadables. It’s a curated hub where users can get access to helpful and valuable resources.

Here are some of the main reasons why you might consider adding a resource library to BuddyBoss:

  • Centralized resource hub. A resource library provides a centralized location for members to access valuable resources related to the community’s focus or topic of discussion.
  • Find resources quickly. It allows members to quickly and easily search and filter resources based on specific categories or tags.
  • Organized and accessible. Provides an organized and accessible repository of information such as tutorials, guides, videos, and articles. These resources help members further their knowledge and skills in the community’s focal topic.
  • Contribute resources. Encourages community members to share and contribute their own resources which can help foster a sense of collaboration and community involvement. The Document Library Pro plugin, which we’ll be using to create a searchable resource library, has a front-end Submit a resource form that you can display anywhere on your BuddyBoss site.
  • Improves user experience. A resource library improves the overall user experience by making it easier for members to access relevant information and resources.
  • Community resources moderation. Community administrators can monitor and approve new resources ensuring that the resource library contains high-quality, accurate, and relevant content.
  • Rate the resources. Provides a platform for members to rate and provide feedback on the available resources. This helps improve the overall quality of the library over time.
  • Save resources. Resource libraries enable community members to save resources for future reference. It makes it easier for them to find and revisit information they find useful such as manuals and guides.
  • Secure. You can create a WordPress resource library that is accessible to members only. This way, you can provide a secure and private platform for sensitive information to be shared.
  • Aid to online learning. You can add libraries of online course resources to a BuddyBoss course or lesson to aid online learning.

Next, we’ll introduce a plugin that lets you add a searchable resource library to your BuddyBoss-powered community site.

Introducing Document Library Pro

Document Library Pro is a WordPress document library plugin that lets you create, manage, and display files and documents in a neat layout on your WordPress website. You can choose between a table layout, folder layout, or grid layout with images or icons.

You can use the plugin to insert a searchable list of resources anywhere on your website. For example, you can add a resource library to a community page or a course page.

The resource library is fully searchable, sortable, and filterable. Community members can use the search bar to find a document or file or use filtering options to narrow down their search by categories and tags.

In addition to this, the Document Library Pro plugin supports any file type, embedded audio and video players, and resources on third-party websites (including web pages and downloadable files hosted on websites like Dropbox or Amazon S3).

How to Create a Searchable Resource Library

The Document Library Pro plugin is incredibly easy to use. You can configure plugin settings and add a searchable resource library to your BuddyBoss community site in a few simple steps.

Here’s what you need to do:

Step #1: Install the Document Library Pro plugin

Get the Document Library Pro plugin and install it on your BuddyBoss website. Once that’s done, head over to the plugin’s settings page (DocumentsSettings) to activate the license key.

Adding Searchable resource library in BuddyBoss Community

From the same page, you can choose your overall settings. Here’s a quick breakdown of the different options:

Document data – Choose which fields to use to store information about the documents.

Document lists  – Choose which page to show the documents and select the layout for your resource library. You can choose either a Table or Grid layout.

Folders – Nest your resource library in a hierarchical folder tree that’s based on document categories.

Document links – Choose to include a link for each document and configure link settings.

Document preview – Let users preview documents in a lightbox.

Search – Choose where you want to show the search box (above, below, above and below, or hidden).

Number of documents – How many documents do you want to show per page of the WordPress resource library?

Sorting – Choose how to sort documents in the resource library e.g. by Date published, Title, Number of comments, etc…

Version control – Enable version control for documents in the resource library.

If you go with the Table layout, you can configure additional settings by heading over to the Document Tables tab.

The plugin lets you choose which columns to show in the document library, which filter dropdowns to show, and where to show the filter dropdowns.

Searchable resource library in BuddyBoss Community

Step #2: Add resources

Now that you’ve configured the Document Library Pro plugin’s settings, you can start adding resources to your BuddyBoss site. The resources can be files, documents, downloadable files, embedded audio and video, or links to resources on third-party websites.

The plugin lets you add documents and files individually or use the bulk import features to quickly add lots of resources to the WordPress resource library.

There are three ways to add files individually to the document library:

  1. You can add them the same way you would add a post or page in WordPress.
  2. Select files from your WordPress Media Library.
  3. Drag and drop files straight into the document library.

If you have lots of documents, you can bulk import them from a CSV file.

Step #3: Add categories and sub-categories to organize resources

You can add categories (and sub-categories) to organize resources for community members. For example, you might create categories by course or by community group. This makes it easier for users to narrow down their search and find relevant resources faster.

You can create document categories and document tags to organize documents and files in your resource library. Depending on the settings you configure in Step #1, the resource library will show category and tag filter dropdowns to make it easier for users to narrow down their search.

Step #4: Preview the document library page

The Document Library Pro plugin comes with a built-in resource library page that lists all of your documents and files. Using this page is entirely optional. You can also create a separate resource library page if you’d like.

The page the Document Library Pro creates by default is called Document Library which you can rename to anything you’d like e.g. Resource Library. It might look something like this:

Step #5: List different resources in different areas

If you’d like to create multiple resource libraries to display in different areas on your BuddyBoss site, you can do that with the Document Library Pro plugin. All you have to do is insert the shortcode to list selected resources (e.g. by category) on community pages or course pages.

The [doc_library content=”title,excerpt,doc_tags” doc_category=”forms”] shortcode, for instance, lets you display a document library anywhere on your site and lists only documents categorized as Forms.

Step #6: Add a front-end Submit a resource form

The Document Library Pro plugin lets you create a Submit a resource form to display anywhere on your BuddyBoss website. You can do this by adding the [dlp_submission_form] shortcode to a page in WordPress.

You can use the plugin settings pages to choose whether to hold new resources for moderation before they are added to your site.

This way, website administrators and moderators can monitor and approve new resources that are added to the library to ensure that they are high-quality, accurate, and relevant.

Next Steps

Using the Document Library Pro plugin, you can add a searchable resource library to your WordPress website in four simple steps.

To recap:

  • Get the plugin and install it on your website. Once that’s done, configure basic plugin settings.
  • Add resources – individually or in bulk – to your WordPress website.
  • Categorize the resources to keep them organized.
  • Preview the resource library on the front-end.

Optionally, you can list different resource libraries in different areas of your site and add a front-end Submit a resource form to let users contribute their own resources.

If you’re looking for a user-friendly way to share resources with learners and community members then the Document Library Pro integration with BuddyBoss is your best bet. It makes it incredibly easy to add a customizable resource library to your community site with search, sort, and filter options.
Ready to add a resource library to your community site? Try Document Library Pro today!

Author Mainul Aion I am a Data Storyteller who likes to work with user journeys, inbound strategies, customer behavior, and content marketing campaigns. I like working with different types of people, and I love to write engaging content on marketing, WordPress, data, management, growth, business, etc.
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