Mastering Content Modelling on Sitecore Content Hub ONE

13 March 2023

By: Robert McGovern

Category: Blogs

Managing and distributing digital content is one of the organisations’ most prominent challenges. Whether it’s across websites, emails, apps, point of sale, voice assistants, kiosks, wearables – the list goes on – the amount of channels that brands need to create and manage content for seems to be growing all the time.

With 70% of users accessing digital content across multiple devices, consistent and personalised content really matters.

Sitecore Content Hub ONE is a headless SaaS CMS that lets users manage content across multiple channels seamlessly. One of its core strengths is the flexibility it allows organisations to create scalable and reusable content no matter where it needs to be seen.

What is Content Modelling?

With Sitecore Content Hub ONE, the substance of your content and how it is presented are entirely separate. You can create a central version of your content and use it across channels in whatever way you see fit through an incredibly flexible distribution system.

The concept of content modelling is structuring content so that it is reusable and consistent in whatever context it is consumed. Content templates containing common fields help users structure the content for omnichannel distribution.

To understand content modelling in Content Hub ONE, you should be familiar with the concept of Content Types and Content Items.

A Content-Type is a collection of information points that can be used consistently across channels. It’s like a template that ensures content is structured according to agreed guidelines, providing Content Authors with a clear and defined field structure and helpful suggestions for writing content.

For example, a Recipe Content-Type might consist of the following:
  • Hero image
  • Title
  • Description
  • List of ingredients
  • Cooking time
  • Number of people it serves
  • Meal budget

This batch of information should be consistent wherever the Recipe is shared, whether via a webpage, email, app, or smart device.

A Content-Type is a uniform structure for a particular batch of content, and below are the primary field types that can be used:
  • Text – up to 50,000 characters
  • Rich text – includes markup but does not accept raw HTML, up to 200,000 characters.
  • Number, Boolean, and Date / Time
  • Reference fields – link other content records, up to 10 items per field
  • Media items – referencing uploaded media items

Content Items, on the other hand, are the individual content pieces that are created from the Content Types. So in the above case, this could be a lasagne recipe, one for a birthday cake and so on.

Content modelling refers to the strategy behind building Content Types that will be used for distribution across a multitude of channels. And it is the planning and thought process behind It that is crucial to ensuring your content delivery works.

Building a Content Model

Your success in using Content Hub ONE will depend on a content model that considers how your content will be used and reused across channels and, of course, how that content is structured.

When beginning such a project, it is best practice to assign a Content Modeller. This should be someone familiar with the content details that need to be distributed and the channels it will need to appear on.

The Recipe example above is quite basic, but consider a more complex scenario like for a pharmaceutical product that may contain medical information, production information, information on usage frequency, dosage, side effects etc. and how this information might need to be distributed across regulators, manufacturers, packaging, marketing etc., not to mention how all of the above may differ across countries and regions.

This is why it’s crucial for the Content Modeller to get the content structure right.

It is the Content Modeller’s role to design and set the strategy for the content to ensure that it’s scalable and reusable and can be utilised across different touch points.

The structure of that content is how the Content Modellers will configure the templates for the Content Authors to use and add content into, thus creating the individual Content Items.

Building a content model generally includes the following steps:
  1. Identify content that could be reused across channels (e.g. Recipes)
  2. Create a Content-Type and include fields for the sections required (e.g. Title, Image, Ingredients etc.)
  3. Set a plan for tracking the creation of the individual Content Items that the Content Author(s) will have to work on going forward (e.g. recipes for lasagne, birthday cake etc.)

Content Modelling Design Principles

When creating a content model, it’s essential to focus on content reusability and consider that content should be easily adapted to different channels. Make sure to take into account the following when creating your content model:

  • Adaptability – Is updating and adding new content types or fields easy?
  • Usage – What type of content is needed, and how will it be used? Will it change depending on specific criteria?
  • Reuse – Is there any information that is common across different content types? One content type can be referenced in another content type, so it does not need to be duplicated.
  • Validation – Which fields should be mandatory, and which fields need additional validation, such as a character limit or a field type?
  • Customer Journeys – What are your customers’ journeys, and what information do they need at which stage?

Like anything in life, putting in the work at the beginning helps ensure you are set up for success in the future. Your content strategy is no different. If your organisation deals with content across multiple channels, then a tool like Sitecore Content Hub ONE is what you need to deliver an omnichannel strategy.

Nailing your Content Modelling is critical to this. As Benjamin Franklin once said, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”.

Read the first article in our series about Content Hub ONE, “The Three Pillars of Sitecore Content Hub ONE”.

About us

Sagittarius is an award-winning digital agency that helps brands create high-converting digital experiences. Established in the UK with over 40 years of experience, we’re a multinational team of innovators, visionaries, strategists, and problem solvers who will optimise your web experience and use data-led decisions to power up your CRO, content, and UX. We take a marketing-first approach to our development, baking in performance and measurement to deliver impressive ROI on your technology investment. We specialise in Sitecore as a complete or composable DXP platform and have our own Sitecore Optimisation Consultancy and training academy to empower your people.

Get in touch 

If you would like to find out more about Sitecore Content Hub One and how it could support your team with managing content across multiple channels seamlessly, please email

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