Page Templates

posted Aug 24, 2009, 9:01 AM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Dec 19, 2009, 8:53 PM ]

Google Sites supports the creation and use of custom page templates.  These templates, when created, are available as options when creating new pages, or changing the template of an existing page.

Creating a Template

Once you've created a page in Google Sites, follow the steps below for creating a template based on that page.  Keep in mind that any content (text, gadgets, images, etc.) will be included in the saved template.
  1. Select More Actions >> Save as Page Template
  2. Specify a Name for the template
  3. Provide a Description for the template
  4. Add a custom icon for your template (A 48 x 48 image is recommended)
  5. Designate a Default Location that will be used each time a new page is created based on the saved template.
  6. Save your changes
A second option is to create a template directly from the More Actions >> Manage Site >> Page Templates screen. 
  1. Click the Create Page Template button
  2. Select the existing template on which you would like to base the new template (including other user-created templates)
  3. Provide a Name for the template
  4. Click Create Template
Note:  When creating a page template, you will see the page displayed without a sidebar.  This happens whether your site includes a sidebar or not.  Once the template is saved and applied to a page, the appropriate sidebar settings will be visible.

Using a Template

Once created, a page template can be accessed through the Create Page process, or by changing the template of an existing page. 

Managing Templates

Google Sites provides a management screen for both system templates and user-created page templates.  To access this screen, select More Actions >> Manage Site >> Page Templates.  In addition to displaying the name, description and revision history for each template, this screen provides the following options:
  • Show on Create - Setting a template to Show on Create will make it visible on the Create Page screen.  It will also make it visible as an option anywhere on the site where page templates are accessible.
  • Hide - Setting a template to Hide will restrict its visibility to only the Page Templates management screen.
  • Set as Default - Setting a template to default will make it the selected option anywhere access to page templates is available, including the Create Page screen.  (You will have the ability to select an alternate template, the "default" template is simply pre-selected.)

To edit the content of a page template, simply click on the name of the template on the page template management screen.  This will bring up the page for viewing, with the option to edit.  You also have the following options under the More Actions menu:
  • Revision History
  • Subscribe to Page Changes
  • Template Settings
  • Print
  • Preview page as Viewer
  • Save a copy of this Template
Note:  At the time of this writing, page templates cannot be deleted.  This function has been requested, and will likely appear in a future release.

Additional Information

  • Site Collaborators and Owners can save pages as templates.
  • Pages created from a page template inherit the settings of the template (for example "Allow comments") unless that page overrides the setting. 
  • Page templates are local to the site for which they are created.