In this SharePoint tutorial, we will discuss what is a SharePoint hub site? How to create a hub site in SharePoint Online? Also, we will check:
- Features of SharePoint Online hub site
- How to associate a SharePoint site to a Hub site
- How to add links in the Hub site navigation
- SharePoint Hub site permission
- SharePoint Communication site vs Hub site
- Team site Vs SharePoint Online Hub site
What is SharePoint Online hub site
What is SharePoint hub site? SharePoint hub sites allow you to organize your intranet by associating the team sites and communication sites together in SharePoint online. Hub sites are the connective tissue of the hub family, you use when organizing related team sites and communication sites.
SharePoint hub site allows organizations to organize and connect sites based on region, department, project, etc. In Hub site, it is easier to:
- Associated SharePoint sites will have common navigation and branding.
- Search across all associated sites.
- Explore related content such as news and other site activities.
SharePoint administrators can decide how many hub sites can be created in the organization, as well as they can decide, who can associate SharePoint sites with the hub sites and whether associating with the sites requires approval.
Note: To create the SharePoint hub sites, you must be a SharePoint administrator. The site owner, however, can associate SharePoint sites with the hub sites.
Note: An organization can have 2000 hub sites in SharePoint Online. You might not need the hub site for every function and it is important to do some planning before create a hub site.
SharePoint hub site features
Here we will discuss the features of SharePoint hub site. Below are the top 6 features of SharePoint Online hub site.
- SharePoint hub site association
- SharePoint hub site navigation
- SharePoint hub site search scope
- News rolled up in SharePoint hub site.
- Event web part in SharePoint hub site
- Document web part in SharePoint hub site
1. SharePoint hub site association
- A SharePoint site becomes part of the hub site by associating the site with the hub site.
- When creating a hub site, SharePoint site admin should allow certain site owners to associate the site with a hub site.
- After SharePoint admin permits the site owner to associate sites to the hub site, the site owner chooses to associate the sites to the hub.
- After a site associated with the hub sites, then the site inherits the hub sites theme and shared navigation.
- Content from the SharePoint sites will roll up/ shown in the SharePoint hub sites and the sites get included in the hub site search scope.
- When a site is associated with the hub site, then it will not automatically add to the hub site navigation. Hub site owner will decide which site will include in the hub site navigation.
- Hub site owners can also configure news, sites, and highlighted content to roll up activity from associated/selected sites.
2. SharePoint hub site navigation
- Hub site owner having permission from SharePoint admin, to determine which site are reflected in the shared navigation and can also include links to other resources.
- Hub site navigation appears at the top of the site and below the suite bar and it is a global navigation one would create to link the sites that are part of the hub.
- Sometimes, you want to add the associated site to the hub navigation, that is one of the benefits of the experience, that you can enable with the SharePoint hub site.
Let’s discuss some of the best practice on the SharePoint hub navigation
Keep simple navigation: It doesn’t mean that you add a link to every single URL, you want the user to click on. Therefore add less link which is necessary or add all link in the Quick link web parts.
Use mega menu navigation: In two ways we can style the navigation, cascading and mega menu. if you have lots of sites and need to organize your links then a better way to use the mega menu navigation style.
Use labels: Not every choice in the navigation must be link. Use labels, if you want to organize your link, by function, region, business unit, etc. It allows a menu choice to create without a link.
3. SharePoint hub site search scope
SharePoint hub site search scope helps you to search the files, sites, and news across the site. When you search in the hub site, it will return results of content in the hub site itself and any associated sites.
For example, in the SharePoint hub site search box, I want to find an excel sheet (details of the client) that is stored in associated sites (Human Resources). You can see the result in the below image.
4. News rolled up in SharePoint hub site
- When news is published in hub sites or any associated sites it will be shown on the home page of the SharePoint hub site by using the news web part.
- We can choose which associated site news will display on the hub site home page.
- Viewers can view the news if they have permission to access it.
5. Event web part in SharePoint hub site
By using the SharePoint event web part on the home page of the hub site, we can display the details of the event from the site associated with the hub site.
6. Document web part in SharePoint hub site
Using the SharePoint Online document web part, it will display the content on the home page from the site which is associated with the SharePoint hub site.
How to create a Hub site in SharePoint Online?
Here we will learn how to create a hub site in SharePoint Online. Before creating a hub site you must know certain things about hub sites
- If you are a global/ SharePoint admin then only you can create a hub site.
- Select the communication or team sites that use a new template to create a hub site.
- If we use classic team sites, then hub navigation and hub site setting will appear on SharePoint modern pages.
- You can convert the existing site to the hub site.
- Those sites that are already associated with another hub cannot be converted to a hub site.
- You can create up to 2000 hub sites, and there is no limit in associating the site with the hub site.
- When the user associates their SharePoint site with the SharePoint hub site, it doesn’t impact the permission on the hub site or the associated site.
- It is important which users are allowed to associate the site with the hub, have permission from the hub
Create hub site in SharePoint Online
- Navigate to SharePoint admin center. (if you have admin permission from your organization)
- Navigate to Sites -> Active site.
- Select a site, then click on hub.
- Select Register as hub site (here you can register the existing site as hub site or you can create a site then register as hub site).
- In register as hub site page, under hub name, you can give a new name to the site or you can use the existing name.
- Under people who can associate sites with the hub, add the user name who has the permission to associate the site with a SharePoint hub site.
Note: If you leave the People who can associate sites with the hub empty, then any user can associate with the hub.
If you later want to change the hub site name and the list of people who can associate with the hub site, then you can use Power Shell or go to the hub site setting.
- Click on Save.
Now you can see the sites as SharePoint hub sites. Now you can associate the site from the active site page in the SharePoint admin center or you can add a link in the SharePoint hub site.
And also you can create a site by clicking on the create icon present in the top right corner in the hub site that will automatically associate with the SharePoint hub site. Below you can see the SharePoint hub site.
This is how we can create a SharePoint Online hub site in Office 365.
Associate a SharePoint site with a hub site
Here we will learn how to associate a SharePoint Online site with the hub site.
How to associate a site with the hub site
There are two ways to associate a site with the hub site, we can associate the existing site with the hub site, and we can create a site in the hub site that will automatically associate with the hub site.
Associate the existing site
- Navigate to SharePoint admin center
- Click on the Sites -> Active sites
- Select a site, click on the hub
- Select Associate with the hub
- Under Select a hub, select the hub site in which you want to associate the site( If this associate site is already associated with another then it cannot be associate with other hub sites).
- Click on save and your site is associated with the SharePoint hub site.
Now in Active site page, in hub column you can see which hub site it get associate.
Create a new site to associate with the hub site
- Open your SharePoint hub site
- Click on the create site Icon
- Choose a template, team site, or communication site.
- If you have selected a team site template, then give a site name, site description and select a privacy setting then click on Next.
- After that add a site owner and site member. Click on Finish.
- After that, the site gets connected to the hub site automatically. You can verify it in the Active site of the SharePoint admin center.
Add Links to SharePoint hub site Navigation
Here we see how to add a link of the associated SharePoint site to SharePoint hub site navigation, by clicking on the link, the user can navigate that site.
- Open your SharePoint hub site.
- Click on the Edit, located in the hub site navigation.
- Click on the Add icon
- Copy the URL of the site from the browser and paste it on the Address box
- Under Display, a name, give a name that will display in the navigation bar of the SharePoint hub site.
- Click on OK
Now you can see the site link in the SharePoint hub navigation.
This is how we can add navigation links in SharePoint Hub site.
SharePoint hub site permission
Here we will learn SharePoint hub site permission.
- To manage the permission in the SharePoint hub site it depends on which site it get created, whether it is a group-connected team site or SharePoint group communication site. If the hub site is registered with group connected team, then permission manage through the Microsoft 365 group, or if the is registered as a SharePoint communication site then permission mange from the SharePoint group.
- Hub site owner will decide which site link will add to the hub site navigation.
- SharePoint admin can create a hub site and admin will allow some specific users who are allowed to connect other sites to the hub. This is done in the SharePoint admin center when the hub site is created.
- Association with the hub site does not change the permission on a SharePoint site.
- If an associated site has restricted access to the hub, only users who have the access to the restricted sites can see the content rolled up in the hub site.
SharePoint Team site Vs Hub site
Here we will learn the difference between SharePoint Team site and SharePoint hub site.
SharePoint Team site
- A team site is where team members can collaborate.
- SharePoint Team Sites is a place where project team members can work on the project deliverables, and also users can plan an event, share ideas, and track status.
- All members can create and edit the content.
- Permission level are given from Microsoft 365 groups plus SharePoint group
- Team sites created by Admin or SharePoint site owner.
- For example of team site is a project team site, an HR team site, Business team site.
SharePoint hub site
- A hub site is used to connect sites in a hub.
- Hub site is a place where users can share their experience with a hub family from related sites, to discover related content and events by rolling up from the associated site. All the sites associated with the hub site Share common navigation and apply common look and feel
- SharePoint hub site owner decides the shared navigation and theme. Site owners and site members create content in their individual sites which is associate with the parent hub.
- Permission is the same as the associate site. Hub site does not change the associate site permission.
- SharePoint hub site created by SharePoint admin or Global admin.
- For example, the project hub site providing resources from different departments ( like project development, testing, project performance ) by connecting the team sites and communication sites and roll up the news, event, and document in a single hub. Sales hub site providing resources for the sales organization by connecting the regional sales team site and regional communication sites.
You may like: SharePoint Online Team site Vs Communication site
SharePoint Communication site vs Hub site
Here we will discuss the difference between SharePoint communication site and hub site.
SharePoint Communication site
- A SharePoint communication site where users can communicate with each other by sharing the information.
- If users/organization wants to broadcast a message, share contents and news for viewers they can use the communication site.
- SharePoint communication site having large numbers of viewers/readers/consumers and fewer content writers.
- Communication sites are not connected to the Microsoft 365 groups, so they use SharePoint group permission
- Communication is created by the site owner ( if the permission is not disabled in the organization)
- Example: travel site, Event site for an organization.
SharePoint hub site: We saw about the SharePoint Hub site in the above section (SharePoint Team site Vs Hub site).
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- Grant user access to SharePoint site office 365
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- SharePoint Online calendar web part
- Create site page in SharePoint online
- Create Site Collection and Subsite in SharePoint Online using PowerShell
In this tutorial, we have learned what is hub sites in SharePoint online, How to create hub site in SharePoint Online, How to associate sites to hub sites and add a link to the navigation in hub sites, Permission for hub sites, SharePoint hub site features, the difference between SharePoint team site and SharePoint hub site and the difference between SharePoint communication site and SharePoint hub site.
After working for more than 15 years in Microsoft technologies like SharePoint, Office 365, and Power Platform (Power Apps, Power Automate, and Power BI), I thought will share my SharePoint expertise knowledge with the world. Our audiences are from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, etc. For my expertise knowledge and SharePoint tutorials, Microsoft has been awarded a Microsoft SharePoint MVP (9 times). I have also worked in companies like HP, TCS, KPIT, etc.