Home Google Tips and Tricks Google Sites Bells and Whistles

Google Sites Bells and Whistles

by Peggy Reimers
Google Sites header with a gold bell and red whistle.

For the longest time, Google Sites did not get much love from its developer. Updates and new features were rare. And let’s face it — the classic Google Sites was not user friendly.

Oh, how things have changed since the Google Sites was released in 2016. The new Google Sites R-O-C-K-S! You get a lot of bang for your buck (or no bucks, if you have a G Suite for Education domain) as new bells and whistles are being released all the time

Below you will find seven stupendous additions to Google Sites. I have also created a Google Site to highlight and explain each bell and whistle. Check it out here.

Table of Contents

If your website is quite long and you want your user to quickly jump to sections, set up a table of contents.


  1. Make sure you are at the top of your page
  2. Under Insert, click the Table of Contents
  3. As soon as you use the Headings format in a text box; this will appear in your table of contents section.

You have the option of hiding words when the eye-shaped icon appears, allowing you to customize your table.

Add a Button  

Use a button for your users to access a URL or a page within your site.


  1. Under Insert, click on button. 
  2. Name your button.
  3. Copy/paste your hyperlink.

You have a choice of filled or outlined buttons, and the button will be the color of your theme’s check-marked color.

Google has provided the Image Carousel to show multiple images in one space.


  1. Under Insert, select Image Carousel.
  2. Next, select your images.
  3. Click the gray + button (you must have two or more images).
  4. Resize your image carousel.

Under the settings gear, you can show the “dots” that represent each image so that the user can cycle through your images manually, too. You can also show captions, program the carousel to auto-start, or change the transition speed.

Add a Divider (or Two or Three)

If you need to separate your horizontal sections, use a divider. It’s a common and useful tool and very easy to use.


  1. Click on the section of the Google Site where you wish to place the divider
  2. Under Insert, select Divider

Add a Favicon

A favicon is the small icon associated with a URL which is displayed on a bookmark list. A favicon helps you locate a website quickly if you are using your bookmark bar. 


  1. Click on the three vertical dots on the menu bar.
  2. Select Add Favicon.
  3. You will need to upload your image and then X out.
  4. Publish the website.
  5. Bookmark the website and you should be able to see the favicon.

Not every image will work with a favicon. Keep in mind that they should typically be small and without too much detail.

Add a Custom Map

Custom maps can be a nice addition to your Google Site. First, you will need to go to Google Maps to create your custom map before inserting your map in the Google Site. 


  1. Go to: https://www.google.com/maps/about/mymaps/.
  2. Click on Create a New Map.
  3. Click on Untitled Map and give your map a title/description.
  4. Click in the Search bar for a location.
  5. Click Add to Map.
  6. Now you can change pin color and icon.
  7. Repeat steps 4-6 to add more locations.
  8. Go back to your Google Site and insert your map.

Collapsible Text

This is the newest trick on the block. If you have a large body of text and you do not want it to take up space on your website, collapsible text is now available.


  1. Under Insert, select Collapsible Text. Automatically a heading and normal text box will appear. 
  2. Enter your text in the appropriate places.

Now your user will be able to expand and collapse text boxes on command. 

No longer is Google Sites the outcast of G Suite! Go forth and create amazing websites with the new Google Sites bells and whistles. Plus: Google is constantly adding new features — so be on the lookout!

Featured Image designed by author.

You may also like


Kristie Lieberman January 30, 2020 - 7:27 am

Your site example is not working 🙁

Peggy Reimers January 30, 2020 - 9:36 am

Sorry about that – it is up and running now.


Leave a Comment

You've Made It This Far

Like what you're reading? Sign up to stay connected with us.



*By downloading, you are subscribing to our email list which includes our daily blog straight to your inbox and marketing emails. It can take up to 7 days for you to be added. You can change your preferences at any time. 

You have Successfully Subscribed!