Is there a good workflow for making a singular instance of text, like an intro paragraph, editable within a template?
I find this comes up a lot and the channel entry workflow is really built around multiples.
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For times where the Channel module is overkill, or the random bits of editable content don't really fit the Channel mould, Low Variables is really great.
It has a lot of added features beyond just making global variables easily (and safely) editable by end users. Some of the big benefits are text formatting options, custom content types for the global variable (this is huge!), early parsing, and save global variables as files.
For basic copy, you can accomplish this using native Snippets.
Snippets are small bits of reusable template or tag parts. You could create a Snippet for any number of purposes, anywhere that you need to reuse a small portion of a template, including partial or complete tags, other variables, etc. Snippets add flexibility and reusability, while making it simple to make site-wide changes by editing the Snippet’s source instead of having to modify many templates.