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Google Sites Review

Updated on August 24, 2011

Google Sites - Do's and Dont'

In case you are not aware of it, Google will give you a free site, totally free, and you can make money with the site.

However, there are some things you might want to know before you get started.

First of all, you should understand the way Google makes money. I’ve been working with Google quite a while now, and contrary to popular belief, Google makes all its money by relevant money. What does that mean? Google is excellent at finding things on the Internet. So if you type in “cheap Windows Operating Systems” you are going to find that the first sites you pull up are going to give you probably the best price for Windows Operating System disks.

But if you go to Google Sites and sign up for a free site, you should plan to do a lot of writing, because Google makes most of its money from AdSense, those little ads they put on your page.

I have to say I didn’t read the fine print, and began putting an Amazon ad on my site. That’s a big no-no. Google Sites is not a place to put your e-store. Google wants people who are reading your interesting article, one that is about something interesting and informative, so they can put ads on your site on the subject you are writing about.

What’s the best way to get ads that are relevant to your site? There is something called “keywords” which some sites (but not Google sites) has you enter. For example, you might be writing a sites page about Paris and all the great sites there. If you are on a site that asks for keywords, you would then go through your site and look for words or phrases that people might search for. Words like “how to” and “cheap” are good words. So one of your keywords might be “Cheap Places to Eat in Paris.” From my own experience, I’d say it’s good to make as many one-word keywords as you can.

But if your site does not have the option to enter keywords, then Google will search your site for words and phrases and does a pretty good job of matching your topic with AdSense. It does that by “crawling” your pages.

One thing that frustrates me about Google Sites is that I was used to making websites in HTML, which is forbidden to use on Google Sites. They have their own coding, for safety reasons, and it can get quite technical if you want to edit code to make cool little devices to put on your page. I also spent quite a long time today trying to get all my links on a page turn to red, and managed to get them all red (instead of the standard blue) except ONE. Also, you can change templates should you decide you don’t like the one you have, but I have tried it numerous times, and each time, there is something that doesn’t belong there, and I cannot get rid of it later. At this stage, I am ready to pull my hair out. And on top of it, today Google released a new Site Template Format, so just when I was getting used to one way of doing things, a new learning curve was thrown at me.

At I saying not to use Google Sites? No, but I am making some recommendations.

  • Do not make your Google Site into a store. You will be penalized.
  • Don’t have a lot of links that go to Other Stores
  • Use another program (such as Google Documents) to put your content into before you put it into Google Sites. I say that because several times, my content just disappeared.
  • Do not spend money pointing your private site to Google like I did. First, get a free site and experiment and see how you like it.
  • Consider using Google Blogger - it is a little less complex than Google Sites and I managed to get a couple of nice blogs up, and you can use your AdSense account there as well as your Analytics account. It is easier to edit, but with Google Blogger, you should also write your content and images into another file and then copy/paste them into Blogger before you start blogging. More than once my content was missing from Blogger.

If you want an e-store, there are plenty of places to host it, but from what I’m learning, Google is not the place for an e-store.


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    • padthai profile image


      6 years ago from Georgia

      Well written!


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