How to Create Expandable Posts Summaries in Blogger

February 23, 2008 | posted in , | 0 comments

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Expandable Post Summaries is the method by which each blog post consists of a short paragraph of introduction followed by a 'Read More' link. This enables the reader to get a small introduction to each post on the main page. He can then click the Read More link if he gets sufficiently interested........

Many bloggers have reported confusion when they tried to follow the instructions on the official blogger help page for this hence I have tried to put the help in more easy to follow terms here. There are basically three steps to follow if you want to implement expandable post summaries in the new layouts template.

The first step is to put the code for the conditional css. This changes how posts display on different pages. To do this login to Dashboard and click on Layout for your blog. Then click on Edit Html and first backup your template by using the Download Full Template link. Then scroll down till you come to </head> tag and add the following code immediately above it :

<b:if cond='data:blog.pageType == "item"'>
span.fullpost {display:inline;}
span.fullpost {display:none;}

Save Template. IMPORTANT NOTE in the layouts template there is a ]]></b:skin> tag just above the </head> tag. Add the above code so that it lies between these two tags. What we did here was to define a class called "fullpost" that will appear only on post pages (permalinks).

The second step is to add the Read More links which will appear after the paragraph summaries. To do this put a check in the Expand Widgets Template checkbox at the top of the Edit Template text box.

NOTE : If you do not put a check in Expand widgets template checkbox at the top of the TEMPLATE CODE BOX you will not see this code.

This is in the Edit Html subtab of Template tab. Then scroll down in the code till you come to the Blog Posts Widget code where locate this line of code :


Add the code below immediately after the above code :

<b:if cond='data:blog.pageType != "item"'>
<a expr:href='data:post.url' target='_blank'>Read more!</a>

Save Template. This link will only appear on the main page and archive pages, and it will redirect your reader to the post page containing the full text of your post.
IMPORTANT NOTE : Do not use any other code or it will give error.

You can also add your Post Title at the end of the Read More link so that it will read "Read More on "My Best Post"!"

A Reader wanted to increase the font size of the Read More! link. To do this add this code instead of the one above :

<b:if cond='data:blog.pageType != "item"'>
<span ><a expr:href='data:post.url' target='_blank'><font size="120" color="red">Read more!</font></a></span>

Increase or decrease the figure 120 as you want it and then save the template. To make the font bold use this code instead :

<b:if cond='data:blog.pageType != "item"'>
<span style="font-weight:bold;"><a expr:href='data:post.url' target='_blank'>Read more!</a></span>

Save Template. To do both use this code :

<b:if cond='data:blog.pageType != "item"'>
<span style="font-weight:bold;"><span ><a expr:href='data:post.url' target='_blank'>Read more!</a></span></span>

Save Template.


The last step is to modify the post template so that each post when created will show you where to place your summary paragraph and where to place the rest of the post. To do this go to Settings------>Formatting and scroll down to the end of the page to the box for the Post Template. Copy and Paste the following lines there :

Here is the beginning of my post. <span class="fullpost">And here is the rest of it.</span>

Save Settings. When you click on Create Post and then Edit Html tab of Post Editor you will see the following (Click Image for larger view) :

Replace the line "Here is the beginning of my post." (Type your summary here) with your summary paragraph. Then replace the line "And here is the rest of it." (Type rest of the post here.) with the rest of your post. Do not delete the other lines <span class="fullpost"> and </span>. Also add your summary paragraph above both the lines and your rest of the post between the lines. Then click Publish to publish post.


Login to and click on +New Post link on Dashboard. The Post Editor will come up. Click on Edit Html tab in top right frame of Post Editor. This is what you should see (The colors are mine) :

Type your summary here
<span class="fullpost">
Type rest of the post here

If you want to show a photo or any text on the summary post on the Main Page put it instead of the red text line.

If you want photo to show in the full post on the Post Page put it instead of the GREEN text.

Before publishing make sure that the two span (code) lines are present and the line is at the bottom and the span=readmore line in between your summary post and the second half of the post.

Then only click on Publish button.


1. The hack will not apply retrospectively. That is to say after you add the code you will have to edit your past posts so that they display in summary fashion on the Main Page of the blog.

2. The hack applies only to posts on the Main Page. Once a post having the hack moves off the Main Page it does not display in this fashion. This is a Main Page Hack.


The advantages of this method is you get a link to your posts below your summary paragraph which gets an additional link in the search engines indexing. Also you do not have to rely on any external Javascript. The third advantage is that the Read More link opens into a new page leaving your main page still open in viewer's browser.

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