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Mastering Slider Creation in Webflow CMS: A Step-by-Step Guide

Creating a dynamic slider in Webflow CMS might seem like a complex task, especially with the current limitation on the native slider/lightbox component. However, with a bit of creativity and the right approach, it's entirely possible to build an engaging and interactive slider for your CMS content.

Problem: CMS Slider Limitation in Webflow

As some of you might have noticed on the Webflow forum, the native slider/lightbox component in Webflow is currently not compatible with the CMS. This means you can't directly use CMS content to create slides, which can be a bit of a roadblock if you're looking to build a dynamic slider.

Solution: A Workaround for Creating a CMS Slider

Despite this limitation, there's a creative workaround that you can employ to build a dynamic slider using Webflow CMS.

  • Step 1: The first step is to create a CMS collection if you haven't done so already. This collection will store the content for your slides. You may want to include fields for the image, headline, description, and any other content you want to display on the slides.
  • Step 2: Next, add a slider element to your canvas and style it as you want. The trick here is that each slide will have its own Collection List. So, start working with the first slide and remove the other slides for now.
  • Step 3: Once you have styled your first slide, add a CMS collection list to the slide. This will allow you to pull content from your CMS Collection. When you finish styling, go to the Collection List Settings panel on the right-hand menu, scroll to Limit Items, tick the Limit checkbox there and set ‘Start at’ 1. This will let you control which items from the CMS collection show up in the slide.
  • Step 4: After you have added content to your first slide and styled it, you can now duplicate the slide. Simply select the Slide element, copy and paste it as many times as you need. Then, open each new Slide and change the ‘Start at’ number of the Collection List for each Slide to the corresponding number, e.g. 2, 3, 4, etc. This ensures that each slide displays different content from the CMS collection.
  • Step 5: Finally, publish your website to see your new CMS Slider in action! You can add new slides and edit content anytime.

You can also add additional interactivity to your slider using Webflow’s interactions feature. For example, you can create a slide change interaction to animate the slide transitions.

The above steps should give you a solid starting point for creating dynamic sliders in Webflow CMS. For a more detailed walkthrough, you can check out this guide by Elish Web Design, which includes video tutorials for each step.

Happy designing, and feel free to share your creations on the Webflow forum!

Pro Tip: Supercharge Your Slider with Custom Code

If you're looking to truly customize your slider and provide a unique user experience, consider leveraging custom code. Webflow allows you to add custom code on a project or page level, providing an opportunity to break through some of the CMS slider limitations.

For example, you can use Javascript to create a "load more" button at the end of your slider. This button could dynamically load more CMS items into your slider as your users scroll through, providing an infinite slider experience. This is particularly useful if you have a large CMS collection and you don't want to overwhelm your users with too much content at once.

To implement this, you would need to add a custom code embed element to your page, and write a Javascript function that listens for the click event on your "load more" button. When the button is clicked, the function would fetch the next set of CMS items and append them to your slider. You would also need to update your collection list settings to initially limit the number of items to match the number of slides you want to show before the user clicks "load more".

Remember, whenever you're working with custom code, always test thoroughly to ensure everything is working as expected. Happy coding!

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