A Comprehensive Guide to Types of Websites (With Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published June 10, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Professionals use websites to promote businesses, enhance personal brands, and sell products. Choosing the right website can be a creative and strategic challenge. If you're interested in designing a website that best fits the needs of a business you work for, you might gain valuable information by learning about the different types of websites available. In this article, we offer tips on how to select a suitable website and explore different categories of websites that you might choose from.

How to choose from different types of websites

The major deciding factor when choosing from different types of websites is discovering the goals of the business. This can help you develop a strategy for building and designing your website. You can follow the steps below to choose the right website for your needs:

1. Define the website's purpose

Before you build a website, it's important to analyze the company's business goals. Create a clear and concise list of the objectives you would like the business to accomplish through the website. You could also include insights from other colleagues and staff members, as they may provide useful information during the planning phase. Consider whether to focus the website on earning income or networking and engaging clients and customers. Here are the primary reasons for building business websites:

  • Becoming thought leaders in their industry, creating content that instructs and informs

  • Hosting a professional portfolio

  • Creating an online store that sells directly to customers

  • Representing a business and creating an online presence

  • Entertaining an audience for personal enjoyment or profit

  • Creating an online community focusing on a specific shared interest

In a world that increasingly relies on digital media for information, having a website can help a business build credibility with potential customers. Also, a website keeps the business open to the public past its regular working hours, whereas when you close a store, the business establishment isn't available to the public. A website is typically open 24 hours every day, and by linking an e-mail to it, you can create an avenue for customers to reach you even when you're not physically present.

Related: Tips on How to Provide Good Customer Service (With Benefits)

2. Assess the company's website design skills

Creating a custom website without using an existing template usually requires experience in graphic design, coding, and search engine optimization. Although some businesses may create a custom website, most companies use templates from website hosting services. After the initial planning phase, one of the first assessments to undertake might be whether you or one of your colleagues have the skills to create a website.

Websites have become easier to create thanks to specialized online programs. Even people with minimal design experience can create an engaging website from an existing template. Alternatively, you might hire a professional to build your website, following your instructions.

3. Define your expertise

One of the main things companies often promote on a website is what sets them apart from their competition. Businesses typically have a specific niche within their market. By defining what makes the business exceptional, you can showcase the unique products that it sells. For example, if you work at a smaller business that provides a service to customers, you can highlight the fact that the company has superior customer service when compared to bigger organizations. You might consider researching competitors' websites to understand how they present themselves.

Creating a personal website also gives you an opportunity to share a little about yourself. This can help you highlight skills and abilities which aren't related to your profession. If you're creating a portfolio of the work you've already completed, you could include some details about your personal life and hobbies. This can help you personalize your portfolio and build rapport with future clients.

Related: How to Write an About Me Page for Your Website

4. Predict update frequency

You may have many responsibilities as a business manager, and remembering to update the website might challenge you. Try to discern how much time you can spend each week on making sure the website is up to date. This is also important for e-commerce websites because regular maintenance, such as providing information about promotions and sales, can increase revenue.

If the major focus of your website is a blog, you may consider creating a content marketing strategy. First, discern how often you can update your blog, creating unique and informative content to rank higher on search engines. In the first few months of your website, you can create informative and entertaining content that centres on specific keywords, as this can drive traffic to your website. Alternatively, if your website doesn't require regular updates to your blog, you might have more flexibility in your content marketing strategy.

Types of websites

Creating a website typically allows you to connect with your audience more efficiently, providing visitors with informative content or products that meet their specific needs. Companies market their websites on social media to provide more opportunities to reach out to customers and network with other businesses. Here are the different types of websites to consider:

Personal blogs

A personal blog can give you the opportunity to share your opinions, thoughts, product reviews, pictures, or videos. You could host it for entertainment purposes or grow it and create another stream of income. Whether it's conducting affiliate marketing or creating a profitable mailing list, there are many ways to monetize your blog. Alternatively, you might want a blog to update family and friends on your major life experiences and adventures. Alternatively, your blog might focus on a specific community with like-minded pursuits and interests.

Business websites

A business website can be more than just an online store. Through the use of creative content, a business can create a website to help it become a thought leader in its industry and build brand recognition. A frequently asked question (FAQ) section is one of the most popular forms of content on a business blog. FAQs focus on providing answers to questions that visitors have regarding company-related matters.

Read more: Guide to Thought Leadership (With Examples)

A business can also strengthen its customers' experience by including enhanced features on its website, like providing an opportunity for visitors to log in and post. This can also allow them to download important information, specifications, and manuals for products. Another enhanced feature a business may include on its website is a place for customer reviews. Creating such a space builds credibility and gives customers a sense of familiarity with the business. Reviews can also help to discover issues in the business and discern what changes it might make.

E-commerce websites

Globalization has allowed businesses to sell their products to a global market. Retailers typically use e-commerce websites to reach a wider group of customers while also creating a great customer experience by utilizing software that makes purchasing easy. Building an e-commerce website requires a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate for the business to protect its customers' financial transactions. In addition, most e-commerce websites provide shipment information, like tracking updates. Although e-commerce websites are on the web, they increasingly represent traditional retail businesses.

Entertainment websites

Entertainment websites create entertaining content, such as videos, blog posts, and infographics, to reach their audience. Some of this content is humorous and entertaining, while other kinds may provoke thought and address societal needs. Entertainment websites typically focus on a specific message within their niche.

Portfolios

Some professionals may choose to showcase their recent work on a portfolio website. Portfolios provide a digital space for creative individuals, such as content writers and graphic designers, to prove their credibility to potential clients. You may consider including contact information on your portfolio website so that visitors can easily reach you.

Read More: Online Portfolio (With Benefits and Steps to Create One)

Non-profit websites

A non-profit entity provides a service to a community. Websites for non-profit organizations are like business websites and typically include information, such as a mission statement, location, and upcoming dates for events. The key difference between a website for a non-profit organization and a business is that the former primarily focuses on creating content to attract donors, encourage volunteers, and inform a community about events. The non-profit organization might establish a financial infrastructure on its website to receive donations and sell merchandise.

Educational websites

Whether it's an educational institution like a university or a private educational forum, there are many kinds of educational websites on the internet. Recently, individuals with unique skills have begun posting on membership websites to offer training courses. Traditional educational centres, including colleges and universities, also offer online courses. A forum is another type of educational website where users can post a question, and professionals and industry leaders answer it. Forums can offer a unique form of education, combining collaboration and open-source information sharing.

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