Intermediate Skills‎ > ‎Insert‎ > ‎

Google Drive

Files in Google Drive can be accessed from a Site page using one of 3 primary ways:
  1. Link on webpage that opens the file
    • in Drive, get a sharable link to the file (select the file and click 'Get link' or 'Share')
    • on Sites create a link
  2. Embed a folder into webpage - and viewers see the files listed and can click to open them
  3. Embed a view of the file directly into the webpage.
This page covers how to embed folders and files directly into a page.

Edit -> Insert -> Google Drive

Files stored in Google Drive fall into two categories:
  • Types recognized by Google Docs suite (including image and video files)
  • Other types (PDF, TXT, and MS Office format files)
Google Sites Insert Google Drive Dialog Box Image

Google Docs Suite Files

Google Docs Suite files (and Drive folders) are easy to embed.  
  1. Select the file
    • Starting with command:  Edit -> Insert -> Google Drive 
    • Select the relevant application (Docs, Sheet, etc).
    • In the dialog box that appears, select the desired file.

  2. Adjust object settings
    • Enter a title if desired (I typically have a a title appear since it can take a couple seconds for a the file to appear within the frame (and if it doesn't appear, knowing the title helps with troubleshooting).
    • Adjust object's layout (size, position and wrapping).  Note this is ofter a repetitive process, first save the page to seehow it looks and then adjust for desired appearance.

  3. Optional - add a link below the object
    • Note: a visitor viewing an embedded object of a files has a relatively restricted experience.  This may be precisely the desired operation, but perhaps you would like the visitor to be able to open the file (folder) using Google Drive viewer - helpful for downloading, printing, and even editing if permitted.
    • Use text similar to "Open <file-name> in Google Drive Viewer.
    • Make the "Open <file-name> portion a link to the file.
    • Note you as a site editor will see a link within the bottom of an object that you can click to open the file.  However that link only appears for site editors, not visitors.

Sheets - Open to a Specific Tab

Do you have a Google Sheet with multiple tabs and want to open to a specified tab? You can, learn how here.

In standard use, a Google Sheet embedded in a Site page will open to it's default tab (which is the leftmost tab in the list at the bottom of the sheets).

Select any Tab
To embed any desired tab rather than just the default takes a little more work, but if this is what you need, it's worth the effort.

  1. In Drive, open the sheet.
  2. Select the desired tab that you want to embed.
  3. Copy the URL
  4. In Sites, start the insert process the same way, using command:  Edit -> Insert -> Google Drive -> Spreadsheet 
  5. When the dialog box appears, rather than searching for the file, use the field titled, "Or paste a web address here" at the bottom to insert the URL for the desired tab.
  6. The rest of the process is the same.
Google Sites Insert Sheets Dialog Image

Note, this tip only works on Google Sheets. Unfortunately attempts to use it for Google Slides - to a specific slide - and Google Docs - to a specific heading - were ineffective, the result is just the start of the file.

Non-Google Files

Non-Google files can also be embedded into pages, however the process is tricky since there isn't an obvious choice in the Insert menu.

This process has been tested with these formats:
  • PDF
  • Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint  (.doc .docx .xls .xlsx .ppt .pptx)
  • TXT
  1. Get the URL for sharing the file
    • Go to Google Drive, highlight the file and select 'Share'
    • In the dialog box, click the 'Get Sharable Link' button and copy the URL

  2. In Google Sites, create an object that references the file
    1. Select Insert -> Drive -> Video (yes, Video - it's obtuse, but it works!)
    2. In the dialog box, at the bottom is a field 'Or paste web address here', paste the URL for the file and click 'Select'.
    3. Another Dialog Box appears titled "Insert Google Docs Video".
    4. Adjust the object properties as desired.

  3. Save the page and fine tine settings - view page to check if your settings need fine tuning (particularly for size) and make adjustments.

  4. Optional - add a link below the object (same as for Google files)


To view samples visit the Examples/Drive Files page.

TBD perhaps include more considerations.