One of the earliest stages of developing a Business website is determining what types of pages are needed and how they’ll all be connected together. Different types of websites will require different pages. The pages an e-commerce site will need are different from that of your average small business or educational website. In some cases, completely custom options with a curated blend of both may be the best option.
In the world of web development, there are three basic categories of web page design.
A static web page is the simplest of all three categories and primarily contains text. This makes it easy for search engine crawlers to read and index the information. This is a good fit for HTML pages and data that will remain the same, like Terms of Service pages versus those undergoing frequent changes, like an e-commerce website or blog page.
Also See: What type of language is HTML?
A dynamic web page is often built on an open content management platform (CMS) like WordPress. These platforms allow you to work with the existing framework to create dynamic pages with animations and interactive features that require some coding and skilled web design. It may be possible to create something passable with templates from a basic website builder like Wix or ShowIt.
A web page designed with interactive media design requires input from the user to perform specific functions. This can be achieved through text, images, video, or graphics, and the results are displayed based on the user’s input. This is a high-quality, highly-customizable design style that improves user experience.
The home page is the lighthouse of your website. This page best attracts your ideal customer and connects everything else together. Here is where visitors learn just enough about you to know that you offer what they want, and they’re inspired to learn more.
A home page should be well-laid out and organized with captivating headings and imagery supported by clean navigation and clear calls to action (CTA).
Also See: The Best Types of Website Page Layouts
Your portfolio web page is an opportunity to showcase the best of your work and spotlight your favorite projects. This can be a gallery page or a page that displays and describes the sub-pages for each project where they can click to learn more.
A portfolio page that’s designed to convert browsers into leads or buyers should include case studies or testimonials and a clear call to action for what they should do next.
This is the high-level education corner of your website that appeals to your top-of-funnel audience, and every business should have one. As you create content to match the needs and goals of your target audience, you elevate your authority in your niche and your position in the marketplace.
Every blog page should include a section about what type of content to expect, how often your newsletter or blog is published, and how they can sign up and have it delivered. Use varying thumbnails and cover images that are relevant to each article to capture viewer interest.
This page can be a community board for your company and your ideal customer audience. Here you would showcase upcoming live events, evergreen events, make PR announcements, share media spotlights, and post some of your educational content.
A forum is where you can connect directly with your market and start or host meaningful conversations, stimulate relevant engagement, respond to customer inquiries, and even advertise to your target customer.
Every strong forum is always active, fairly moderated, has beneficial rules and boundaries in place, and has been gamified with achievement badges or prizes.
This page is where viewers will develop a stronger connection with your brand and the people behind it. They should walk away from this page understanding your mission, your purpose, your values, and your vision.
You want them to know without a doubt why they would choose you over your competitors, and the about or brand story page is a cornerstone of that strategy.
Landing pages can be registration pages, location-based pages, thank-you pages, squeeze pages, or lead-capture pages. These are simple pages designed for one purpose and should be highly specific to fulfill that purpose with clear calls to action.
A sales page is designed to convert viewers into buyers on a single page. These must be written with highly relevant conversion copy, clearly highlight the benefits of the product or service, and remove as many barriers to purchase as possible.
Membership site functionality allows you to offer client-facing access to additional content or information behind a paywall. This could be fully integrated with your website or a third-party service like CMS Hub, MemberPress, SureMembers, MemberSpace, or Wild Apricot.
If you produce written or video training that is free to the public, a resource library is a way to offer your educational content all in one place. Here you can showcase product demos, behind-the-scenes information, videos on how it’s made, and tips or how-tos your ideal customer is looking for. This will not only build trust with your market but will also enhance your credibility in your niche.
Often more applicable to the artistic and design sector, creative media pages are the place to show off exciting projects, leverage interactive design, or highlight industry collaborations. Here viewers will learn more about you as a person or brand but are not pressured to buy anything.
A 404 page is an error page that keeps the viewer on your website but lets them know the page they clicked no longer exists or isn’t working. Many brands take the opportunity to make fun of themselves with a humorous message that makes readers smile. Always include an easy way to find the content they need or provide a breadcrumb menu for easy navigation.
If you sell physical or digital products, your website will need a product or e-commerce shopping page. Every product page should include product descriptions, specifications, images, videos, reviews, frequently asked questions, warranty info, and pricing.
This is your opportunity to showcase your top-sellers and high-ticket products to capture sales. A product page is best supported by additional educational content that leads your customers to understand better and value the benefits of your product line.
Once they’ve decided to buy, your shopping cart page is where they check out, and you collect the money. You can take existing payment processing options like PayPal, GooglePay, or ShopPay, or you can use something more integrated like Stripe or ThriveCart.
There’s always a chance that they’ll abandon the cart, but by designing your cart page for conversions, you can reduce this possibility as much as possible. Cart pages should be free of distractions but include some of the following:
Here is where to include all the ways they can reach you and your team. If applicable, include departments or specific team member contact information for direct connections. Offer a contact form that also self-sorts what they need or who they should speak to with custom questions that filter their data.
Every website needs a few specific pages covering all the legal bases. Legal disclaimers, privacy policies, and terms of service pages are required to meet compliance standards and limit your legal liability. These pages are also required if you plan to run ads from Google or Facebook.
There are two questions to ask yourself before developing a website to determine what types of web pages you need.
One is, how will your customers find your website, or what is your digital marketing strategy? If you’re building a complex, detailed, and highly connected SEO strategy, your website could look far different from one primarily promoted by paid advertising.
The second question is, what web pages will your ideal customer expect? Are they looking for a highly educational resource-driven website that answers all their questions? Or one that is simply but beautifully designed that immediately connects with their goals and desires before they make a purchase? Or is it a blend of both?
Based on your answers to these questions, you should have a better understanding of the types of pages your website needs and how they should be designed. For expert consultation with our website design team, schedule a call with us here to learn more about your needs and what your ideal website would look like.