How to Set Up a Free Website Using Google Sites

When you sign up for a Google account, you get well-known features, like Google Docs, included with your Google Drive account. You can also access Googles Sites to design and host a website for profit or pleasure. Google assigns a generic domain name to your website, or you can purchase a custom domain name with Google's help. The generic URLs are long and begin with https://sites.google.com/site/[you choose what is attached to the end]. Custom domain names appear exactly as you configure them upon purchase.

Step


Go to the Google Sites page. Log in to your Google account or sign up for a free account. If you have already created sites, they display in the dashboard. If not, the page is empty. Click the Create button at the left side of the screen.

sites google
sites google
credit: Kathleen Estrada
preview
preview
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Select a template to use for your website. Click the Magnifying Glass under each template for more information.

Use Template
Use Template
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Choose a template or click on Browse the Gallery for More to view and open templates in a preview tab.

Step

When you locate a suitable template for your website, click the Use Template button at the top of the preview website or the Select button in the preview screen. If you want a different template, close the tab to go back to the other templates.

Name your Site
Name your Site
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

In the Name Your Site field, enter the name of your new site.

Step

The Site Location field automatically populates with the name of your website. Google appends your chosen website name onto the end of https://sites.google.com/site/. If you already own a domain name, click Visit Google Domains and follow the instructions to point the cname for your domain to the site you are creating.

Select Theme
Select Theme
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Select a theme from the choices offered by highlighting the theme you want.

More Options
More Options
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Click the arrow to open More Options. Enter a site description to help with search engine optimization. For example, if you are creating a website for flower sales, enter keywords in your description that regular users will type into a search engine to search for a site like yours.

Step

If the site contains mature content for adults only, place a check mark in the next box.

Step

Lastly, click the check box beside I'm not a robot. Follow the instructions to prove you are a human; for example, Google will display a series of images and ask you to click only the images of pizza.

Create Button
Create Button
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

When all the fields are complete, click the Create button at the top of the page.

Step

After your website is created, add pages, text, images or videos from YouTube. Share the website with a team so other members can work with you on the website.

Edit Your New Website

Step

Click the Edit page icon -- it resembles a pencil -- at the top of the screen to place your site in Edit Mode.

Edit Page
Edit Page
credit: Kathleen Estrada
Edit Mode
Edit Mode
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Edit the page. Each section of text is broken into separate boxes. Edit each box and type in the text as you want it. Format tools are located at the top of the page when you are in Edit Mode. Click Save when you are done or Cancel if you do not want to save the edits.

Step

Add images to the website when in the Edit Mode by placing the cursor where you want the image to be on the page. Click Insert in the tab above, select Image, click Choose and find the image. Click OK to select the image and click Save to save it to the page.

YouTube
YouTube
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Insert a music video on your page by uploading a song that you legally own to YouTube. In Edit Mode, click Insert and in the Google section click YouTube.

YouTube URL
YouTube URL
credit: Kathleen Estrada

Step

Paste the URL of the YouTube video in the first field and choose the display options, or leave them set at the defaults. Click Save.

Step

Click the Gear at the top of the screen when the page is not in Edit Mode and click Sharing and Permissions to allow others to help you build your website. Click the Share button to send a request for help to someone.

Step

Your new site is now live on the Internet for the whole world to see. Visit Google Sites Help Forum for any issues or to learn helpful tips and tricks.