Site Layout

Site Layout refers to elements that are global to your site. Site Layout elements include
  • Site Header
  • Horizontal Navigation
  • Sidebar
  • Custom Footer
  • Site Width
  • System Footer
To enter "Edit Site Layout" mode, click the gear in the upper right and select Edit Site Layout.

Site Header

The site header options allow you to configure
  • the height of the header area
  • the alignment of the header content
  • whether to use a logo or not
The screen grab to the right shows you the various options you have.

Horizontal Navigation

Turning this one allows you to make use of a horizontal nav bar at the top of your site. Note: If you choose to use horizontal navigation, you must manually add the pages you wish to have on the nav bar. The horizontal nav bar can include pages in your site as well as straight URL links to other sites. And as you can see at the left, you have three options for how to display your horizontal nav bar:

 * boxes (or buttons)
 * tabs (like this site uses)
 * links (as you see on this site)


As you can see on the right, there are not a lot of options for the sidebar. Basically, if you decide to use one, you can specify which side (left or right) and how much space it will consume (in pixels).

Beyond the sidebar settings, you have the option of adding one or more sidebar "gadgets" to display content. Three that are quite helpful are the...
  1. Navigation gadget (which allows you to use vertical navigation)
  2. Text gadget (which allows you to add regular text as well as images)
  3. Countdown gadget (which is a fun way to countdown to some date)

Custom Footer

This site layout element enables a text region at the bottom of your site. This content will be visible on all site pages and can include text, images, and links. Check out this site which leverages a custom footer.

System Footer

There are just 4 options that are part of the system footer that you can configure. Basically, these options allow you to simply show or hide some of the links that Google places at the bottom of all Google Sites. These are shown here for you on the left.

Site Width

The last site layout element to configure is the site width. The site width basically configures how much content area you wish to have horizontally within the web browser. You'll see 2 options: Theme Default and Custom.

Theme Default

Theme Default typically allows the use of the entire width of the browser. This provides lots of space for content. A drawback for people with some OC tendencies like me is that this content "autoflows" as the browser width changes.

If you select Custom, you can then enter a value in pixels (as shown above) or a percentage. Entering a value in pixels centers your content on the page and limits it to the amount specified. This is great for OC types like me. The downside is that if the browser width is smaller than the number of pixels you entered, visitors will need to scroll sideways to view all your content.

If you select Custom and enter a percentage value, then your content width will autoflow as with the Theme Default. However, the difference is that your content is now centered and doesn't use all the browser width which allows page background image or color to "frame" your content on the left and right.