5 Website Types & How to Design Them

Remarkable websites for remarkable brands.
Andrej Hribernik
I
November 7, 2020

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Websites are an extremely important aspect of business if you want to build a platform. Because of the very nature of the internet, anyone can host a website. But even with the plethora of tutorials available on the internet on ‘how to design a website’, these websites all share the same content over and over again.

There isn’t only one type of website, so if you want more audience you will need a website that is catered for your particular audience. In this guide, we will discuss the various types of websites and how you can design them:

Types of websites – and how to design them

There are hundreds of different types of websites, so much that you would have to go buy a massive book to read them all. No one’s interested in reading that big of a book that screams nerd. For your benefit, we have decided to narrow down the types into five distinct types:

E-Commerce:

The first type of website that we will be discussing is something that a lot of people have to see every day. E-Commerce became a trillion-dollar industry in 2015, and more than 80% of the online population has used e-commerce to buy a product at least once in their lifetime. Take a look at Amazon, eBay, BestBuy and all those other platforms. 

How to design an e-commerce website?

Here is a little how-to guide on how to design an e-commerce website:

  • Goal – Your goal should be to design a website that sells products. Your focus should be on making the customer look at the product. 
  • Showcasing– You should focus on showing the product through a white or black background and ensuring that anyone who is going to post a product online can showcase their product correctly.
  •  Checkout – Your checkout experience should be clean and not cluttered. The more distracted the customer during checkout, the lesser likely they are to buy a certain product.

When you are designing a website, you can also increase your productivity by inserting little features where the customer will want to enter their details like their email address or phone number. This can help your website run targeted ads and be more successful in getting that sale. This is perhaps why if you use AliExpress once, you’re bombarded with their emails forever. 

Marketing or Business

The second type of website in this guide is the marketing or business website. Any respectable business out there will have a business website, because websites help drive sales, build trust and help gather additional revenue through advertisements. For a wary customer, if a business does not have a website, they are not trusty enough to do business with.

One of the better business website type examples includes subway.com, mcdonalds.com, and pretty much any business you know. 

How to design marketing/business website

Here are some things you might want to take care of when designing a marketing/business website type:

  • Description – Be clear about the description of your business on the landing page. Don’t bombard the user with information, instead tell your user why you are different from other businesses around you on the landing page. 
  • Point-of-view – Marketing websites are not e-commerce websites and you should not rely on pictures too much. Instead, try to visualize your ideas through words. Get your idea across. Using a clean interface based on WordPress is very popular. 
  • Credibility – Even if you are using your website to build credibility for your business, you should link it to your social media channels or a phone number they can verify it with. This can also help build a bigger audience and drive more sales. 
  • Call to Action – You might think that the call to action is the job of the copywriter or the content writer, but the designer should also focus on creating the website in a way that it calls to action whenever the user visits the website. 

Blog/Media Outlet

Blogs are probably the most popular form of websites out there. Anyone with basic knowledge of the internet can start a blog and start getting viewers through the use of some sort of SEO. More than 409 million people view about 20 billion pages each month. Because there are so many blogs out there, you will have to design a website that looks fundamentally better than your competitors. 

Some popular media outlet or blog website type examples include the New York Times, Entrepreneur.com, Medium.com and so on.

How to design blog/media outlet website?

Designing a blog/media outlet website is pretty easy once you get the basics in. It’s easy to learn but hard to master the technique. Here are some tips that you should know:

  • Content – the main purpose of creating a blog website is to share content with your viewers, and you should focus on getting it delivered. The design should focus on the content first, and make the reader become indulged in your website. 
  • Search engine – be sure to break down your work into different categories that people can easily search up through an easily located search button. The search button should be available wherever the user is on the website. Use tags and other SEO-related things on your content. 
  • Minimalism – instead of using unique and beautiful colors in the background that you think is cool, look at the biggest platforms. They all use simple white or black colored backgrounds that get the job done and make the reader more intrigued about the content. 

Educational websites

Especially with the pandemic, educational websites are becoming immensely popular. People would rather get themselves an online tutor instead of hiring one offline – for various reasons. However, because of how in infancy these educational websites are, they are often designed the same way as marketing websites or blogging outlets. 

The best educational website types examples for good content include Khan Academy, Big Think, Coursera, Bright storm and so on. 

How to design an educational website?

Depending on the type of content, the educational website can vary. For example, if you are pushing videos, you would want something like Udemy. If you want to be more focused on the written content, Bright storm is the way to go. If you want both, Khan Academy is the biggest benchmark. Here are some things you will want to look at:

  • Engagement – in the world of ever-lowering attention span, it is even more important that your website is engaging and offers interactive content that viewers can enjoy. 
  • Progression – the website should be able to offer progression and let the viewer know what their progress on their course is. Duolingo does a great job with this. 

Portfolio

If you are going to become a professional, you will need some sort of a portfolio. Similar to a business website, getting a portfolio for your professional needs will help you build credibility and land a job faster. 

How to design a portfolio-based website?

Here are some steps you might want to take:

  • Presentation – Your portfolio is your way of letting businesses and viewers know how you are going to present your content to them. Theme it as you would theme yourself. 
  • Minimalism – Don’t bore your viewers, make them understand what you do and your services in the least words possible. In a portfolio, lesser words speak more. 
  • Call to Action – Always have a call to action and an optional social media or a Fiverr/Upwork/Freelancing websites button ready so you can ensure your viewer becomes more credible about your work and decides to hire you. 

Final Thoughts:

We hope that this simple guide was able to help you understand the importance of designing a website depending on what you want to deliver. If you have any queries in any of these steps, do let us know in the comment section. 

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WRITTEN BY
Andrej Hribernik
A freelance web designer and developer, working with big and small companies who want to build remarkable web presence with a remarkable brand. You can find him at www.andrejthefreelancer.com.

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