Creating Your Own Web Part Page Layout Template

Donal McCarthy
By | Updated March 14, 2011 | 4 min read
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In this series of posts I will show you how to:

  • Create your own web part page layout template
  • Reuse this layout (with web parts)
  • Enable the Quick Launch on standard SharePoint web part page layout templates.



One of the ‘curiosities’ of out-of-the-box SharePoint are the web part page layout templates. Whilst there are a few useful layout templates, the weird thing about them is the absence of a Quick Launch. A web part page is a natural extension of a site. Why shouldn’t it have the site navigation?

Anyway, mini-rant over! Fortunately, BrightWork includes a web part page layout template with the Quick Launch. However, we only give you one template – the default one. While of course this will suit 90% of situations, there may be situations where you need or want to have a layout suited to your needs and that is what I will describe how to do here.

I will use SharePoint Designer 2010 to do this. You can download it for free from here. If you are not yet on SharePoint 2010, the basic principle of what I will show is pretty much the same in SharePoint 2007.

Note: This post will cover every step; however, if you are a real SharePoint or IT novice, you should be very careful when using SharePoint Designer, as it can be a very powerful weapon in the wrong hands.

Create BrightWork Web Part Page

First off, we will create a BrightWork Web Part page. If you don’t have BrightWork, just create a standard web part page using one of the SharePoint layout templates.

  1. Click All Site Content on your Project Office Quick Launch.
  2. Click BrightWork Pages.
  3. Click Documents | New Document.
  4. Ensure BrightWork Page Template is selected, give the page a name and click Create.

The new page will open with the below layout. You will be adding a new row that includes four web part zones.


Edit Page in SharePoint Designer

Note: Your site may not be configured to allow use of SharePoint designer – see here for more information.

  1. Click All Site Content on the Quick Launch and then BrightWork Pages.
  2. Click Edit in Microsoft SharePoint Designer on the new page’s menu.image
  3. Click OK.
  4. Enter you login credentials when prompted to by SharePoint Designer and click OK.
  5. Click Advanced Mode.Note: If you are familiar with SharePoint Designer 2007, this is a new ‘feature’ in SharePoint Designer 2010 that you should be aware of. The yellow code below is protected from editing until you click Advanced Mode.
  6. Click Split.
  7. Click in the row labeled TopRow.
  8. Now click on the tr to select the entire row so that the relevant code is selected (you can also do this via the code editor).
  9. Copy and paste the code so that you have two versions of TopRow.
  10. Click in one of the TopRow sections, select the WebPartZone and click Delete on your keyboard.
  11. Click Insert and then Table and insert a table with 1 row and 4 columns in the <td></td> cell that you just removed the webpart zone from.
  12. Click Insert | Web Part Zone.
  13. Repeat for the other three cells in the table.
  14. Click Save.
  15. Click Yes if prompted about changing the page from Site Definition.imageWhen you open the page for editing in SharePoint, it should have a web part zone layout like the below. You should now be able to create a layout that matches your own unique needs!image

Next time up I will blog about how you can reuse this page, even with web parts added!


Image credit

Donal McCarthy
Donal McCarthy

Donal has been a BrightWorker for so long, he remembers when his desktop got Windows XP. Starting as a technical writer, he is now responsible for making sure all the marketing systems make life beautiful for our website visitors, prospects and sales teams. He is a firm Microsoftie, and enjoys writing 'how to' articles and posts about the latest in technology from Microsoft. Outside of BrightWork, he is a family man who enjoys reading, cooking, and following the Irish and Connacht rugby teams.

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