SharePoint Online Communication Site

In this SharePoint Online tutorial, we will learn What is SharePoint Online communication site is and how we can create a SharePoint Online communication site. And also we will learn what is the difference between the SharePoint Online Communication site and vs SharePoint Online Team Site.

What is SharePoint’s Online Communication site?

  • A SharePoint Online communication site is a place to share information with the entire organization. We use communication sites to update and notify the entire organization.
  • If we want to share the information with large audiences, in that case, we can create a communication site.
  • For example, we can create a communication site for the HR team, where they can share the Company News or events with the entire organization.
  • We can access the SharePoint Online communication site from any device, which stands responsive.
  • When we create a communication site, a Microsoft 365 group is not created.

SharePoint Online communication site vs Team site

Let us discuss, what are the differences between the SharePoint Online Communication site and vs SharePoint Online Team Site.

SharePoint Online communication siteSharePoint Online Team site
SharePoint communication sites will be for the entire organization and not for the Specific team or a group.SharePoint Team sites are specific to a selected team or group.
By default, the SharePoint Communication site has default top navigation and no left-hand navigation.The team site Contains left-hand navigation and no default top navigation.
By default, SharePoint Communication sites are Private and Users can access them, only if they have permission.By default, SharePoint Team sites are Public and we can access them.
When the SharePoint Online Communication Site is created, no default shared apps are created automatically.When the SharePoint OnlineTeam site is created, the default shared apps like Planner tasks board, One Note and Calendar, and the mailbox are created automatically.
For the Communication sites, we use SharePoint groups for security purposes.The team site automatically creates Office 365 groups, we use Office 365 groups for security purposes.
External sharing is enabled in the Communication site, SharePoint Admin can able be to enable it.External sharing is enabled on the Team site, SharePoint Admin can able be to disable it.
There will be a small number of people who will edit and create the content on the communication site, but a large number of content readers will be presented.On the Team site, all members can edit and create the contents.
SharePoint Online communication site vs Team site

These are the differences between the SharePoint Online Communication site and vs SharePoint Online Team Site.

Read Mega menu in SharePoint Online

How to create a SharePoint Online communication site

Let us see how to create a SharePoint online communication site,

  • Initially, Open the SharePoint home page -> Select the + Create site option at the top left corner of the home page as shown below, A Popup appears, and in that Select the Communication site.
create a SharePoint Online communication site
create a SharePoint Online communication site
  • Once the Communication site is selected, Enter the site name which is the required field, and the description field is optional.
  • By default, it will display whether the Site address is available or not.
  • And also select the default language for the Communication site, which cannot be changed in the future.
  • Click on the Finish button. It will take a few minutes to create a SharePoint Communication site.
create SharePoint Online communication site
create a SharePoint Online communication site
  • In the below screenshot, you can see that the Team HR communication site was created by the default template.
create SharePoint Online communication site example
create a SharePoint Online communication site example

This is how to create a SharePoint online communication site.

Read SharePoint document library permissions

SharePoint Online communication site change title

Let us see how can we change the title of the SharePoint Online Communication site,

Yes, it is possible to change the title of the SharePoint Online Communication site, to achieve this follow the below steps:

  • Open the SharePoint Communication site for which you want to change the title.
  • Select the Settings gear icon -> click on the Site information -> Select view all site settings as shown below:
SharePoint Online communication site change title
SharePoint Online communication site change title
  • On the site settings page, Under the Look and Feel section, select the Title, description, and logo option.
Change title in SharePoint Online communication site
Change title in SharePoint Online communication site
  • Here in the Title field, enter the title name that you want to update or change.
  • In this example, you can see that I have changed the site title from Team HR to HR Team. Click on the OK button to save your changes.
Change title in the SharePoint Online communication site
Change title in the SharePoint Online communication site
  • In the below screenshot, you can see the title has been changed for the SharePoint Online communication site.
How to Change title in the SharePoint Online communication site
How to Change title in the SharePoint Online communication site

This is how we can change the title of the SharePoint Online communication site.

Read SharePoint Online sites web part

Discussion board SharePoint online communication site

  • No, there is no way to add a discussion board app to the SharePoint Online communication sites.
  • Discussion boards are not available on the SharePoint Online Communication Sites. When you try to add the discussion board app, you cannot find any results, and the reason it is not available on the communication site.
  • It is available only on the SharePoint Online Team Sites.

SharePoint online communication site left navigation

  • No, it is impossible to change from the top navigation to the left navigation( quick launch) on the SharePoint Online Communication site.
  • Left Navigation will appear only on the SharePoint Online Team Site.
  • By default, in the SharePoint Online communication site, a mega menu configuration will appear, we cannot change it to the left navigation.
  • And it is also not possible to change the SharePoint Online Communication site to the SharePoint Online Team Site.

Read How to change the SharePoint site from private to public

Sharepoint online communication site external sharing

Let us see how can we Share the Communication site with the external users,

To share a Communication site with external users, we need to do changes at the below two places.

  1. Enable External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level
  2. Enable External Sharing at the SharePoint Site Level

Enable External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level

We have to make sure your external sharing is Enabled in the SharePoint Online admin center. To achieve this, follow the below steps:

SharePoint Online Admin center external sharing settings:

  • Login to Microsoft Office365 using your SharePoint credentials -> Select Office365 App Launcher and then click on the Admin.
SharePoint online admin center external sharing
SharePoint Online admin center external sharing
  • Now, select Show all options and then we can able to see the SharePoint option under the Admin centers. Select the option SharePoint.
Enable External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level
Enable External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level
  • Click on the option Sharing, under the Policies as shown below:
Enable the External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level
Enable the External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level
  • Here, on the external sharing page, we can scroll the slider and set the content sharing in the most permissive of the least permissive.
SharePoint online admin center enable external sharing
SharePoint Online admin center enables external sharing
  • We can also choose the permission that is selected by default for sharing links with the external user, as shown below:
  • By default, Only people in your organization will be selected, We can change the option to anyone with the link for the external sharing.
  • There is also an option to choose expiration and permission for anyone with the link option.
SharePoint online admin center enable the external sharing
SharePoint Online admin center enables the external sharing

This is how we can enable external sharing at the tenant level, to share a Communication site with external users.

Read How to share a SharePoint site with external users

Enable External Sharing at the SharePoint Site Level

Now, let us see how we can enable external sharing at the SharePoint site level. We need to enable an external sharing setting at the particular site, which we are going to share with an external user.

SharePoint Online Site Level external sharing settings:

  • Select Office365 App Launcher and then click on the Admin.
  • Select Show all options and then you can able to see the SharePoint option under Admin centers. Select the option SharePoint.
  • Under Sites, option-> click on the Active sites to view all the active sites available in the SharePoint sites.
Enable the External Sharing at the SharePoint site level
Enable the External Sharing at the SharePoint site level
  • Select the SharePoint Communication site that you want to share with the External user, and click on the Sharing icon presented in the toolbar.
how to Enable the External Sharing at the SharePoint site level
how to Enable the External Sharing at the SharePoint site level
  • Here you can select Anyone or new or existing guests from the below options and click on the Save button to save your changes.
  • Anyone: If you choose this option, then anyone with the link can access the site (files and folders, etc) without sign-in.
  • New and existing guests: If you choose this option, then both new and existing guests can access the site contents by signing in or by providing a code.
  • Existing guests only: If you choose existing guests only, then your organization’s existing guests only can access the content.
  • Only people in your organization: In this case, there will not be any external sharing for the site. The site only is accessible to your internal users.
  • Change from Only people in your organization to anyone for external sharing.
how to Enable External Sharing at the SharePoint site level
how to Enable External Sharing at the SharePoint site level

This is how we can share a SharePoint Communication site with external users at the SharePoint site level.

Read How to convert SharePoint site to Microsoft Teams

Add the RSS feed to SharePoint online communication site

No, it is not possible to add the RSS feed to the SharePoint Online communication site,

  • RSS stands for Rich Site Summary which allows embedding various content from various news sources.
  • We can only add the RSS feed to the SharePoint Online Team site, We cannot add the RSS feed to the SharePoint Online communication site.

SharePoint online Communication site permissions

Let us discuss how to view the communication site permissions in the SharePoint Online,

  • A SharePoint Communication site permission level represents a set of rights that can be assigned to a user or group on a specific SharePoint Communication site.
  • Each SharePoint Communication site is created with 3 default groups- Owner, Member, and Visitor.
  • By default, Owners have Full Control, Members have Edit access, and Visitors have Read access.

Below mentioned are the different levels of SharePoint Communication site permission.

  1. Read – People owning read permission, can view pages and list items, and download documents.
  2. Contribute – User owning with Contribute permission can view, add, update, and delete list items and documents.
  3. Edit – Users can add, edit and delete lists, and can view, add, update, and delete list items and documents.
  4. Design – In these permission levels, users can view, add, update, delete, approve, and customize.
  5. Full Control – Has full control.

To view the SharePoint Communication site Permission levels, follow the below steps:

  • In the SharePoint communication site, click on the Settings Gear Icon, and Select the Site Permissions. Click on the Advanced permissions settings.
SharePoint online Communication site permissions
SharePoint online Communication site permissions
  • In the below screenshot, you can see the communication site permissions with the permission levels under the Permissions tab.
SharePoint online Communication site permissions example
SharePoint online Communication site permissions example

This is how to view the SharePoint online communication site permissions.

Read Customize SharePoint site page

SharePoint online communication site top navigation missing

  • Initially, make sure that you have enabled the Quick Launch in a SharePoint Online Communication site.
  • If it is not enabled, select the settings gear icon -> Click on the site information -> and then click on the view all site settings.
  • Then, on the site settings page, under the look and feel, select the navigation elements.
  • Check the Enable Quick Launch setting box to turn it off or on, and then click the OK button to save your changes.
  • Check and Uncheck the Quick Launch and save, Now refresh the SharePoint Online communication site and see whether the top navigation bar occurs or not.

SharePoint online communication site template id

The below table represents the templates Ids of the Modern SharePoint sites,

  • Developers who are creating the SharePoint sites programmatically should know about the Templates ids.
  • Each template may define a unique predefined group of features, files, pages, master pages, lists, and libraries.
  • When sites are provided using the appropriate SharePoint Site Template ID, then no need to configure manually for the site’s large quantity.
  • Team Sites created with Office 365 groups utilizing the SharePoint Site Template ID is unique.
SharePoint Site NameSharePoint Site Template ID
Blank SiteSTS#1
Team SiteSTS#3 or STS#0
Teams Site (Office 365 Group)Group#0
Publishing SiteCMSPUBLISHING#0 or BLANKINTERNET#0
Communication siteSITEPAGEPUBLISHING#0
Document WorkspaceSTS#2
App TemplateAPP#0
SharePoint online communication site template id

These are some common Template IDs that are available on the SharePoint Online Communication sites.

Read SharePoint Navigation – Add parent site navigation to a subsite in SharePoint

Enable star ratings in SharePoint online communication site

No, it is not possible to enable star ratings on a SharePoint online communication site,

  • We can enable the rating settings only on the SharePoint Online Team site, we can enable it on the communication site.
  • But there is an alternative way that we can activate the rating settings in the SharePoint Online communication site.
  • To achieve this, either we can use PowerShell to activate the rating settings feature, or we can activate the rating settings in the SharePoint Online communication site by using SPFX.

In this SharePoint Online tutorial, we have learned What is a SharePoint Online Communication site and how to create a communication site in SharePoint Online. And also covered the below-mentioned topics:

  • SharePoint Online communication site vs Team site
  • SharePoint Online communication site change title
  • SharePoint online communication site left navigation
  • Sharepoint online communication site external sharing
  • Enable External Sharing at the Office 365 Tenant Level
  • Enable External Sharing at the SharePoint Site Level
  • Add the RSS feed to SharePoint online communication site
  • SharePoint online Communication site permissions
  • SharePoint online communication site top navigation missing
  • SharePoint online communication site template id
  • Enable star ratings in SharePoint online communication site
  • Discussion board SharePoint online communication site

You may also like:

>