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Better Sharing for Google Docs

Lori Halley 18 June 2010 2 comments

google-docs-sharing New sharing features in Google Docs are rolling out this week that not only make it easier to share your documents, spreadsheets, and presentations online but also give you more control over who you’re sharing those materials with and how.  Simply put, there will be three levels of sharing: private, viewable by anyone who has been given a specific link, and public on the web. But that’s not the only change –

Google’s made a couple of videos (see below) to introduce the new features and the new simplified interface you’ll find at http://docs.google.com, but here are some highlights worth noting:

Private is the default:  All documents start out as private – you are the only person with access when you first create a document, and you have to make a conscious decision to share it with selected others.  That should save some of us a good number of awkward oops moments...

Visibility on every document: Visibility options  now appear next to every document title and in your Docs list. Click on the Visibility option next to any doc’s title (or on the Share button) to see the full list of those who can view and/or edit your document. Convenient!

Resettable doc URL: If you change your mind about sharing a document for which you’ve sent out a link, you can reset the doc’s URL at any time. That’s a bit of fine-tuning of control you may never need or want to use, but what a great option to have, just in case.

Have a look:

YouTube: Sharing in Google Docs



Bonus: Publishing Google Docs has SEO Benefits

Here’s one more point about sharing your materials via Google Docs that you may not have noticed when it kicked in late last year – any document that’s fully public can be crawled by Google Search. How is this useful?  Exposure!  Share your nonprofit’s reports, brochures, presentations, and promotional materials – use the 'Publish as web page' or 'Publish/embed' option –  and link to them from your website or in social media (any publicly crawlable web page will do, in fact). Google Search robots will then crawl your published-and-linked Google Docs, so your document’s contents become available in search results – one more way for small nonprofits to boost the odds they’ll get found online!

Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot] Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

Posted by Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

Published Friday, 18 June 2010 at 1:41 AM


  • John Haydon said:

    Wednesday, 23 June 2010 at 12:52 PM

    Rebecca - about your last point on using Google Docs for search. Wouldn't it be better to publish the doc as a web page? Or are you talking about docs you typically wouldn't publish as a webpage?

  • Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot] Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

    Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot] said:

    Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 3:54 AM

    That's what I'm thinking, John: and also, you might want a multi-author document (such as project planning doc, event report, etc) to be publicly available in search engines while it's still a work-in-progress - but you probably don't want to give admin access to your website to everyone who needs to edit/update that document! I'm sure there are other cases, but that's maminly what I had in mind...

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