If ‘building a website’ is on your to-do list, before you do anything, you might want to review this list and get some clarity on exactly what type of website you need.

Identifying the type of website you need is crucial because websites serve specific purposes and are designed and developed in many different ways, and that means a very different approach and budget.

So, what type of website might work well for you? Here’s a snapshot of the various types …

Business websites

These websites are created to represent specific companies. They rely heavily on branding, while also offering insight into the products and services on offer. While all e-commerce websites are business websites, not all business websites offer online sales. Brochure websites also fall under this category. However, these are more like digital business cards, and typically have a limited number of pages.

E-commerce websites

Websites that include shopping carts and accept payment information from the customers fall into this category. Depending on the scale of a business, these websites can be extensive or basic. A good e-commerce website should make browsing for products across multiple categories simple.

Portfolio websites

Professionals from different fields such as art, architecture, designing, photography, and filmmaking use portfolio websites to highlight their best work. These websites tend to use unique layouts, and rely greatly on creativity.

Social media websites

Social media websites serve as online platforms where users share their thoughts, ideas, images, videos, and more with other users, while also connecting with them in different ways. In recent times, many internet users are turning to social media sites to get the latest news. This is basically because several media houses now use social media sites to deliver news.

Media websites

Media websites typically serves as online platforms for newspapers, TV channels, and magazines, although some are entirely online. These websites focus on collecting and reporting news stories. Some media websites also provide entertainment-related content.

Entertainment websites

These websites focus solely on providing entertainment.  The slew of online audio and video streaming websites falls under this category. These websites aim to make money, either through subscriptions or through ads.

Educational

While several educational institutions such as schools and colleges have their own websites, some educational organizations exist only in the online world. Educational websites tend to provide information about various topics across different levels. The use of interactive tools such as quizzes and games in these websites is fairly common.

Community forums or wiki websites

Wiki websites give people the ability to collaborate and create content together. It is possible to create a wiki website surrounding just about any topic. As of now, wikis already exist for business resources, fan communities, and collating information from different sources.

Personal websites

There is no dearth of personal websites created by individuals with the sole aim of getting their thoughts, feelings, or experiences out in the open. Blogs fall under this category, as do vlogs and photo diaries. Depending on how popular a personal website becomes, monetizing it might be possible.

Blogs

Blogs began as online journals maintained by individuals to document different aspects of their lives. Now, blogs are used as effective marketing tools by small and big businesses alike.

Personal profiles

Personal profiles are typically created by professionals. They may be used for personal branding, job searches, promotions, and communicating with peers.

Membership portals

A membership portal works in the form of gated section of a business’ online presence, where only members get access to the content a business shares.

Landing pages

Landing pages serve as entry points that highlight particular aspects of your business or website. For instance, a landing page can help promote a new product or an ongoing discount.

Not-for-profit websites

What sets a not-for-profit website apart from a conventional business website is that the former focuses on promoting activities and services without the intention of generating profits.

Sales pages

A sales page has one specific purpose. It is used to highlight the benefits of any given product or service, with the aim of getting consumers to make purchases.

Directories

Online directories provide lists of individuals or organizations along with other relevant information. Data may be arranged thematically or alphabetically.

Knowledge base

A business may use an online knowledge base to store different kinds of information ranging from simple to complex. The stored data can be structured or unstructured. Access can be restricted based on different parameters.

Web apps

Web apps are typically created for mobile devices, although some are made available for desktops and laptops too. An app is software that a user needs to install on a device. Apps are typically business-specific and can be used to carry out various functions.

There is more to a website than it looking appealing. It should drive engagement by taking into account the needs of its target audience. Knowing what you need boils down to your business goals as well as what you want your brand to achieve. Before you invest heavily in your website, take time to answer these simple but important questions:

· What do you want your website to achieve for your business or brand?
· How much time, energy, and resources do you have to invest in your website?
· What are your business’ three short-term (two-year) goals?
· What are your business’ three long-term (10-year) goals?

Send us your answers and we’ll spend time discussing the options that might work best for you.

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