Section lists

Create custom section lists anywhere in the Help Center and have them look and behave however you like.

In this article

The objects available on each Zendesk page template are limited and can sometimes prevent you from creating the layouts that you want. The Section Lists plugin allows you to present a complete set of sections on any page using custom micro-templates.

Categories can also be included to help build more advanced layouts like lists of sections grouped by category. An example can be found in our Azura theme.


The default template simply presents sections in an unstyled list.

  • <div data-element="section-list"></div>

You can fully style and customize the section list both in terms of its look-and-feel and functionality by specifying a custom micro-template as a plugin option.


Use data-element="section-list" on an element to create a list of sections.

If data attributes are used, you will need to ensure that the allow unsafe HTML setting is enabled within Guide.

The Section List plugin can be initialized using JavaScript:

<div id="section-list">...</div>

<script type="text/javascript">
  ready(function() {
    var sectionList = document.getElementById('section-list');
    if (!sectionList) return;

    new Sections(sectionList, {
      // Options go here

When using a custom template additional data can be passed using the templateData option and it may be necessary to fetch and process objects from the REST API first. For example, the following code could be used on the Section page:

<div id="section-list">...</div>

<script type="text/javascript">
  ready(function() {
    var sectionList = document.getElementById('section-list');
    if (!sectionList) return;

    // Get categories, sections and articles
    Util.get(['categories', 'sections']).then(function(collection) {
      // Get the object representing the current section
      var currentSection = collection.sections.filter(function(section) {
        return === {{}};

      // Get the current category
      var currentCategory = collection.categories.filter(function(category) {
        return === currentSection['html_url'];

      new Sections(sectionList, {

        // Pass the collection to the plugin to avoid fetching it again
        collection: collection,
        // Specify a custom template to use
        template: 'custom-section-list',
        // Pass additional data to the templating function
        templateData: {
          currentSection: currentSection,
          currentCategory: currentCategory

The custom template could then render the section list with access to all categories and as well as the current section and category objects.

The collection object containing sections (and possibly categories) is sorted and organized such that parent objects have a children property, which is an array of child objects. For example, if categories are fetched, a given category’s children array will contain all section objects belonging to that category.


Options can be passed via data attributes or JavaScript.

For data attributes, append the option name to data-.

Name Type Default Description
collection object {} An object containing an array of objects representing sections (and possibly categories). If the collection is not provided, the plugin will fetch categories from the Zendesk REST API.
categories boolean true True if category objects should be returned with sections.
categoryId string
null Limit sections to those in a given category.
properties array See below The list of properties from the REST API response to pass to the templating function.
template string
null The name of the template to use.
templateData object {} Additional data to expose to the templating function.

The following article properties are passed to the templating function by default:

  • id
  • name
  • html_url
  • position

The following section and category properties are required by the plugin to sort the collection of articles and also available within custom templates:

  • parent_section_id
  • category_id


Class Properties
sectionList.render Fires when the section list has been rendered.