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Best practices for sharing

Sharing high-quality maps, rich analytics, and interactive apps through the website can be useful to extend your work to your organization or the open web community. Once you add your items to the website, you can share them through links, groups, map-based apps, and group-based apps. You can also embed maps and groups in your website. What you can share depends on your privileges and the security settings of your organization.

Below are some best practices for making your content stand out as authoritative and interesting.

Relevant information

Relevant information is a key component of a great map or app. Whether topical, general interest, operational, or a showcase, great shared items convey useful information in an attractive and usable format. Some examples include an imagery map of a current environmental disaster, a layer showing county-level federal spending on health care, and a JavaScript routing sample that includes a code attachment.

Usable format

To reach the largest number of people, be sure to share your item with everyone. Share items that are usable by a wide audience, such as a map, or useful to a specific audience, such as ArcGIS package files. Regardless of the format or audience, be sure the data behind the map or app is accessible to everybody who might open your item.

Attractive thumbnail image

A beautiful thumbnail image will help your item stand out in a list of search results. Check the image that the website adds by default. If it doesn't seem inspiring or accurate, replace it with your own.

For best results, add an image that is 600 pixels wide by 400 pixels high or larger with an aspect ratio of 1.5:1 in a web file format such as PNG, JPEG, or GIF. Pan and zoom to what you want to appear in your thumbnail. Depending on the size and resolution of your image file and how far you zoom in to customize the thumbnail, the image may be resampled and scaled when it's saved. If you add an image in GIF or JPEG format, it will be converted to PNG when it's saved.

Informative item details

Be clear and specific in describing your item details. Spend some time coming up with an informative title, summary, description, and tags so others understand the purpose of your content. Be sure to include accurate access and use constraints, credits, and spatial extent. Finally, be sure to respond to any comments somebody adds about your item. You might even proactively add comments to promote a specific feature of your map or app. For example, you could encourage users to check out a new aerial image you've just added to your map.

Descriptive profile

Take advantage of your profile to establish your authority in geographic information, map design, app development, and so on. Useful descriptive information includes your first and last name, the organization you belong to, contact information, and your areas of expertise and interests. Adding an image that represents you or your organization will help personalize your description.

Usable sharing properties

Before you share your item, consider your sharing privileges. Then consider the format and your audience. Do you want to share a map, an app, embed a map in your website, add a file to a group? For example, if you want to share data with your constituents who probably don't have ArcGIS Desktop but do have access to the Internet, you could publish your data as a web layer, create a story map, and embed the app in your website. If you need to share service definitions with other map makers in your organization, you could create a group, package the data in a file, and share the file to that group. Regardless of the format or audience, be sure all the resources in your item have the correct sharing properties. For example, if you want to share a gallery app with everyone, be sure the group, all the items in the group, and the app are public.