Last Updated 3/6/2018
Articles are possibly one of the most versatile objects in the CMS, making them a useful starting point for a large number of purposes. They are easily organized a variety of ways and can be naturally extended to fit almost any shape you need them to.
One of the core strengths of articles is that they carry fewer preconceived notions of what exactly they should be or do. Their loosely-defined purpose makes them an excellent candidate for defining re-usable content that is linked in different ways across a website.
Do you want to link to content from a landing page "card" to a related page? Use an article! Do you want to create a series of related content such as a tutorial, product/service pages, or a strategic marketing campaign? Use articles! Blog posts work, too, but articles are slightly more versatile and intuitive for content creators and editors. And, of course, articles are a natural fit for scholarly content.
For many designs and article types, the core article fields will be sufficient to meet your needs. For the rest, take advantage of custom fields to innovate beyond what Marketpath decided you can do with articles. This could include adding 3 different versions of the image for different layouts, curating a list of related pages/articles/etc..., linking to additional folders, adding separate fields for special statistics, quotes, or other unique information, or a virtually unlimited number of other options supported by custom fields.
One important thing to consider while designing and building a site is what functionality is available and what functionality you will take advantage of.
You do not have to use a feature just because it is there. A great example of this is authors. For many articles, it will make a lot of sense to credit the author on the site. For other articles, however, adding and displaying authors will only confuse matters. This lesson is written using an article, but listing the authors of the tutorial would not improve the users experience or make it easier to manage the content.
Despite that, you should consider the many ways that authors will organize content and that users will want to access it. We want to make it as easy as possible for people to find the content that they are interested in - which often includes creating and linking to author pages, tag pages, and even folder pages from articles. It is easy for you as a developer to build and enable these connections and it makes your front-end user experience better, so why not do it?
Let's work together to make our documentation as helpful as possible.