In Hugo, your content should be organized in a manner that reflects the rendered website.
While Hugo supports content nested at any level, the top levels (i.e. content/<DIRECTORIES>) are special in Hugo and are considered the content type used to determine layouts etc. To read more about sections, including how to nest them, see sections.
Without any additional configuration, the following will just work:
The following demonstrates the relationships between your content organization and the output URL structure for your Hugo website when it renders. These examples assume you are using pretty URLs, which is the default behavior for Hugo. The examples also assume a key-value of baseURL = "https://example.com" in your site’s configuration file.
You can keep one _index.md for your homepage and one in each of your content sections, taxonomies, and taxonomy terms. The following shows typical placement of an _index.md that would contain content and front matter for a posts section list page on a Hugo website:
The sections can be nested as deeply as you need. The important part to understand is, that to make the section tree fully navigational, at least the lower-most section needs a content file. (i.e. _index.md).
Single Pages in Sections
Single content files in each of your sections are going to be rendered as single page templates. Here is an example of a single post within posts:
The following concepts will provide more insight into the relationship between your project’s organization and the default behaviors of Hugo when building the output website.
A default content type is determined by a piece of content’s section. section is determined by the location within the project’s content directory. sectioncannot be specified or overridden in front matter.
A content’s slug is either name.extension or name/. The value for slug is determined by
the name of the content file (e.g., lollapalooza.md) OR
front matter overrides
A content’s path is determined by the section’s path to the file. The file path
is based on the path to the content’s location AND
does not include the slug
The url is the relative URL for the piece of content. The url
is based on the content’s location within the directory structure OR
is defined in front matter and overrides all the above
Override Destination Paths via Front Matter
Hugo believes that you organize your content with a purpose. The same structure that works to organize your source content is used to organize the rendered site. As displayed above, the organization of the source content will be mirrored in the destination.
There are times where you may need more control over your content. In these cases, there are fields that can be specified in the front matter to determine the destination of a specific piece of content.
The following items are defined in this order for a specific reason: items explained further down in the list will override earlier items, and not all of these items can be defined in front matter:
This isn’t in the front matter, but is the actual name of the file minus the extension. This will be the name of the file in the destination (e.g., content/posts/my-post.md becomes example.com/posts/my-post/).
When defined in the front matter, the slug can take the place of the filename for the destination.
title: A new post with the filename old-post.md
This will render to the following destination according to Hugo’s default behavior:
section is determined by a content’s location on disk and cannot be specified in the front matter. See sections for more information.
A content’s type is also determined by its location on disk but, unlike section, it can be specified in the front matter. See types. This can come in especially handy when you want a piece of content to render using a different layout. In the following example, you can create a layout at layouts/new/mylayout.html that Hugo will use to render this piece of content, even in the midst of many other posts.
title: My Post
A complete URL can be provided. This will override all the above as it pertains to the end destination. This must be the path from the baseURL (starting with a /). url will be used exactly as it provided in the front matter and will ignore the --uglyURLs setting in your site configuration:
title: Old URL
Assuming your baseURL is configured to https://example.com, the addition of url to the front matter will make old-url.md render to the following destination:
You can see more information on how to control output paths in URL Management.