The ArcGIS StoryMaps homepage consists of three main sections: Stories, Collections, and Themes. If you want to create a new story map, make sure you're on the Stories section.
Click the + New Story button to launch the ArcGIS StoryMaps builder. You can create a story from scratch or use the quick start options to add a map tour, guided tour, or sidecar content block to your story map. If you're not sure what option to use, we recommend that you select Start from scratch.
An essential component of your StoryMaps project will be the cover of your story map. The cover will be where you add a title, your name (or group members' names), and a cover image or video. This is the first thing that viewers will see when they open your story map, so it's important to choose effective title and cover media to engage your audience.
StoryMaps content (e.g., text, images, maps, etc.) are added as individual content blocks. You can add content blocks in the StoryMaps Builder by clicking the Add Content Block (+) icon next to "Continue Your Story..."
You can add content before, after, and in-between existing content blocks. You can also drag-and-drop most content blocks if you want to reorder the placement of items throughout your story.
As you're designing your story map, you'll want to use headings and subheadings to help organize the different sections of your story. Adding headings will help improve the overall readability and accessibility of your story. After you add headings, you can use the Design menu in StoryMaps to enable a menu navigation bar for your story, which will let readers quickly jump to specific sections in your story.
You can add headings, subheadings (e.g., Heading 2, Heading 3), bulleted lists, etc. by using the customization menu in the text content block.
You can add images, audio files, and videos to StoryMaps as standalone content blocks or in some of the more specialized content blocks (e.g., Swipe, Sidecar, etc.)
After adding an image to StoryMaps, you can use the image pop-up menu edit the photo, add alt text, etc. Click the pencil icon to open the photo editor. You can crop the image and use the built-in annotation tools (beta) to annotate the image.
Videos can be added to StoryMaps in an embedded format (video player) or as content cards. You will need to add a video to your story then use the pop-up menu bar to select the embedded video or the content card display options. The content card format is helpful if you want to include a video as a supplemental resource instead of a core component of your story map.
Audio files can be added to StoryMaps in a standalone content block or embedded in an image, map, etc. Check out the Breaking the Sound Barrier blog post posted below for more on how to add audio files to StoryMaps.
ArcGIS StoryMaps comes with a number of built-in tools to help improve the overall accessibility of your project. In addition to using headings and subheadings, you should also make sure that every piece of media you add to your project has an alt text description. The alt text will provide a short description of the image, map, etc., which can be accessed by viewers who are using screen readers or who have slow / spotty internet connections that can't load the media.
Alt text can be added to images, videos, other other media after you've added the media to your story map. Navigate to the options menu (gear icon) for the image, video, etc. to add alt text.
This library course guide highlights a couple of the content blocks in ArcGIS StoryMaps but there are a number of other content blocks that you can add to your story map. Check out the following tutorials to learn about some of the other content blocks in ArcGIS StoryMaps:
As you're adding content to your story map, it's essential that you cite your sources. You can include in-text citations and a Works Cited section just like you would in a research paper. You can also use the caption line (or attribution text box) to add attribution information for any media that you add to your project.