What is Google Sites? How to use the free website-building tool


Google Sites is Google’s free and easy-to-use website building tool.

While the look or feel of Google Sites may not be quite as evolved as a Squarespace website, there are a few benefits to using the service if you want to create a simple and functional site.

For starters, it’s completely free. There’s no limit on the number of sites you can create as long as you stay within the 15 GB storage limit on your Google account.

A version of Google Sites has been around since 2008, but there have been significant updates along the way. Google is currently phasing out older sites — called “classic Sites” — in favour of the newer version of the website builder. If you’re a longtime user with an older site, you’ll want to convert your website to a new Google Site by September 2021 if you want it to remain operational.

Google Sites’ key features

Google Sites are integrated with other Google Workspace tools like Docs, Sheets, and Slides.

So you can drop in projects from your Google Drive into the website that you’re building. And like those services, Google Sites can be built, shared, and copied between editors. This is ideal for creating a website for a work project that requires charts and tables or for an event you’re planning with others.

Once you’ve created your website, you can customise its look and feel using the editing function.

Use the ‘Insert,’ ‘Pages,’ and ‘Themes’ tabs to add key elements to your Site. Vivian McCall/Business Insider

You don’t need to have any background in web development or coding to make a website using Google Sites. Every function is intuitive and user friendly.

You can add images, links, YouTube videos and more to your website using simple templates. Deleting and rearranging any of them takes only a few clicks.

Once a Google Site has served its purpose, you can delete it. But deleting a site isn’t a permanent action. Simply go to the trash in your Google Drive to restore it. But remember, Google Drive automatically empties anything that’s been in the trash can for longer than 30 days.

Once you’ve deleted your Site, you can still go into your Trash folder and restore or delete it forever. Vivian McCall/Business Insider

Overall, Google Sites isn’t as comprehensive as other website-building tools. But if you’re looking for a free service for a work presentation, small business or local event, Google Sites could be exactly what you’re looking for.

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