Chrome New Tab page.
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek
You can personalize the Google Chrome New Tab page by clicking the "Customize" pencil icon in the bottom right corner of the New Tab page.

The default Google Chrome New Tab page probably works fine for you, but it could be a lot better. You can add shortcuts to websites, change the wallpaper, and see where you left off in Google apps. It’s worth customizing, and it’s easy to do so.

How to Set the Home Page in Chrome

To set the home page in Google Chrome, you first need to enable the Home button from Settings > Appearance > Show Home Button, then you can choose what the button does.

First, click the three-dot menu icon in the top right corner, then select “Settings” from the menu.

Select "Settings" from the menu.

Next, go to the “Appearance” section on the settings page.

Go to "Appearance."

Toggle “Show Home Button” on and now you can choose to use the “New Tab Page” or enter a custom web address. This is where you’ll go when you click the Home button, it does not replace the New Tab page.

Edit the new tab page.

That’s all there is to setting the Home Page in Google Chrome!

RELATED: How to Set Your Homepage in Google Chrome

Change the Wallpaper on the Chrome New Tab Page

You can set a wallpaper for Google Chrome’s New Tab page by selecting the pencil “Customize” button and choosing an image.

First, click the plus icon in the tab bar to open a new tab, then click the “Customize” pencil icon in the bottom-right corner.

From the “Background” tab, open a collection of images and choose one for the wallpaper. You can also select “Upload From Device” to use your own image.

Choose a collection and image.

Some collections include a “Refresh Daily” option in the top right. This will automatically apply a new wallpaper from the collection every day.

Toggle on "Refresh Daily."

Click the “Done” option to save your preferences.

Select "Done."

The background image is a simple way to personalize the look of the New Tab page. You might see this page more than the desktop on your computer, so it makes sense to make it look nice.

Edit Shortcuts on the Chrome New Tab Page

The New Tab page in Chrome can show your most visited sites or custom shortcuts. You also have the option to hide the shortcuts entirely if you’d like.

First, click the plus icon in the tab bar to open a new tab, then click the “Customize” pencil icon in the bottom-right corner.

From the “Shortcuts” tab, select “My Shortcuts” to choose your own or “Most Visited Sites” for suggestions. Here’s where you can select “Hide Shortcuts,” too.

Choose which type of shortcuts to use.

Click “Done” to apply the changes.

Select "Done."

If you choose the “My Shortcuts” option, you can click the “Add Shortcut” button to enter a web address.

You can also click the three-dot icon for any shortcut to edit the name and address or remove it.

These shortcuts can be handy to quickly jump to websites whenever you open a new tab, rather than typing it in or using the bookmarks bar.

Customize the Information Cards

Below the shortcuts on the Chrome New Tab page, you may notice “cards” with recipes, shopping carts, and Google Drive files—you can toggle these on or off from the “Customize” menu.

First, click the plus icon in the tab bar to open a new tab, then click the “Customize” pencil icon in the bottom-right corner.

Go to the “Cards” tab and toggle on or off any of the cards you’d like to see.

  • Recipe Ideas: Recipe suggestions from your Google searches.
  • Your Carts: Items in your carts from various shopping websites.
  • Google Drive Files: Recently opened files from your Google Drive.

Choose cards to use.

Alternatively, you can select “Hide All Cards” if you don’t want the suggestions on the New Tab page.

Select "Hide All Cards."

Click “Done” to save your changes.

Select "Done."

The information cards can be handy, but the Google Drive card seems to be the one that shows up the most often.

How to Change the Chrome Theme

Google Chrome has a variety of colors and themes to choose from— simply click the “Customize” pencil icon on the New Tab page and go to “Color and Theme.”

First, click the plus icon in the tab bar to open a new tab, then click the “Customize” pencil icon in the bottom-right corner.

Now go to the “Color and Theme” tab and click one of the color options to see it immediately applied.

Select a color option.

If the available colors aren’t to your liking, click the dropper icon to pick your own custom color.

Choose a custom color.

Select “Done” to finalize the look.

Select "Done."

Just like that, you’ve completely changed the look of Chrome with a few clicks! For more intense themes, check out the “Themes” section in the Chrome Web Store.

Chrome’s New Tab page has changed a lot over the years. What used to be a pretty bland page that required extensions to customize has become a rich, personalizable home base for your browsing needs. Microsoft Edge and Firefox also have customizable New Tab pages. Of course, that’s just the tip of the iceberg of what Chrome can do.

Profile Photo for Joe Fedewa Joe Fedewa
Joe Fedewa is a Staff Writer at How-To Geek. He has been covering consumer technology for over a decade and previously worked as Managing Editor at XDA-Developers. Joe loves all things technology and is also an avid DIYer at heart. He has written thousands of articles, hundreds of tutorials, and dozens of reviews.
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