Members-Only Content and Workflow

Note: this screencast is old. Way out of date. We’d recommend purchasing our EE 2 book instead.

Do you have content that needs to be on your site, but “protected” such that only certain people can view it? Or would you like to build an extranet using ExpressionEngine?

This hour-long screencast covers the basics of offering members-only content on an EE site, and builds on the member extranet idea by showing you how to allow members to submit content via a limited view of the EE Control Panel.

Then it wraps up by showing how to implement workflow for those member submissions so member-submitted posts need to be approved before appearing live on the site.

I start with the required setup for a new members-only area - building on the funky green site covered in the Building an ExpressionEngine Site - Small Business series/book. This setup covers adding a new weblog, template group, updating the main navigation, adding content, creating and configuring a member group, and registering members into that group.

Once the setup is in place,  I cover how to show a mix of public and members-only content on the same EE template:

  • Map content to specific users—site:1
  • Map content to any user of a member group—site:few
  • Map content to any logged in user—site:many

Then in a second take on members-only content, I show how to configure the template such that it’s only available to members. Coupled with a login form and changes to the main navigation, this setup creates a true extranet - an entire section of the site that’s only visible or accessible to logged in members of a specific member group.

With the extranet in place, I cover how to now allow extranet users to submit content via simplified view of the ExpressionEngine Control Panel - so that they only have the buttons and tabs appropriate for publishing, and can’t see the Admin area, Templates, etc.

Finally, with members now submitting content, I discuss how to add an approval process for new content. New posts by extranet members will come in with a Pending status. A Content Administrator will be notified via email of the new post, and will be able to review the post before publishing it live to the site. As part of this step I’ll cover a couple of tweaks to improve the experience of the Content Administrator’s experience.


  • You currently have a site running in EE
  • You are comfortable working with the EE Control Panel

Not Covered

  • Customization of the member-related EE templates
  • Stand Alone Entry or Edit forms