Internet & Web development (2)/Course materials/Web Site Overview/Types

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When designing a web site, one of the first things you need to do is determine who the audience is for your site. This is critical, because many design and content decisions depend on this. This page looks at the types of web sites that are on the Internet.

VmvIcon Objectives.png

By the end of this page you will be able to:

  • Describe a range of Web site types.

Types of Site


Enabled portal that renders not only its custom CMS but also syndicated content from other content providers for an agreed fee. There are usually three relationship tiers. Affiliate Agencies (e.g. Commission Junction), Advertisers (e.g. Ebay) and consumer (e.g. Yahoo).

Archive site

Used to preserve valuable electronic content threatened with extinction. Two examples are: Internet Archive, which since 1996 has preserved billions of old (and new) Web pages; and Google Groups, which in early 2005 was archiving over 845,000,000 messages posted to Usenet news/discussion groups.

Auction Site

Case study: Planet bid

An interesting auction site appeared in 2009 (, 2009)[1], although it is no longer active it does give you an idea of the way people use the auction system to make money.

Planet bid auction site

A 1TB Hard Disk Drive currently auction value: $21.54 Some calculations:

  • The drive is now at $21.54. Each time someone bids it costs them the max. of $1.45 (approx) and they increase the bid by .11 cents, so so far the company has made $21.54/.11 * $1.50 = (approx) $294.
  • They will make a fortune. However if you were the last bidder it would be a bargan.. but if you bid in the closing seconds the bid time increases again.. so it could go on for ages.costing $1.49 each time .. very clever company.. but I suspect you wont get a bargain in the end!
  • BTW if it sold for $284 at .11 cents per bid at the lowest cost per bid ($1.00) the company would make $2,581.

... and whats more the amount of time you would have spent waiting for the auction to continue could be hours !!

Blog (or web log) site

  • Blog (or web log) site: site used to log online readings or to post online diaries, which may include discussion forums
  • Sites to create a blog: Blogger (Google), WordPress/eduBlog

Note: Even though WordPress is a Blog the engine that drives WordPress is used extensively to create web sites.

Corporate website

Used to provide background information about a business, organization, or service.

Web developers

Showcase client web sites and demonstrate a companies web skills

  • Hawkes Bay
    • Indelible Hawkes Bay's production company and creative facility house

Commerce site or eCommerce site

For purchasing goods, such as

Community site

A site where persons with similar interests communicate with each other, usually by chat or message boards, such as MySpace/BeBo.

  • Tweet2eat (Hawkes Bay, NZ) : @Tweet2eat helps Hawke's Bay locals discover deals and events on right now at restaurants, wineries and cafes in Hastings, Napier and Havelock North. Tweet2eat also helps Bay businesses succeed online by reaching Bay locals online and enticing them in.

Crises and response site

Sites built quickly i response to Natural disasters

Database site

A site whose main use is the search and display of a specific database's content such as the Internet Movie Database or the Political Graveyard

Design Portfolio site

A site to display a designer’s work to an online audience. One of its forms is the slideshow.

Development site

A site whose purpose is to provide information and resources related to software development, Web design and the like.

Directory site

A site that contains varied contents which are divided into categories and subcategories.

Donation/Fundraising web site

  • YouCaring create your own site to raise money online for personal causes & life events. No fees, easy & secure. YouCaring is a free fundraising website created for individuals wanting to raise funds for medical expenses, memorials and funerals, education and tuition assistance, adoption fundraising, funding for mission trips, pet expenses or animal rescue and helping another in need.

Download site

A strictly used for downloading electronic content, such as software, game demos or computer wallpaper.

  • : A site to download hundreds of free music albums.

Employment site

A allows employers to post job requirements for a position or positions to be filled using the Internet to advertise world wide. A prospective employee can locate and fill out a job application or submit a résumé for the advertised position.

  • A startup by a past student called Local jobs for temporary work (Startup 2014 - by Past students): ( Mar 14: uses Twitter to sign in; Facebook soon) and uses geolocation for users to choose the distance from them a job can be located

used the url which is no longer active

Gaming site

A site that is itself a game or "playground" where many people come to play, such as MSN Games and


Refers to domain names that are the same as those of geographic entities, such as cities and countries. For example, is the geodomain for Richmond, Virginia.

Gripe site

A site devoted to the critique of a person, place, corporation, government, or institution.

Humor site

Satirizes, parodies or otherwise exists solely to amuse.

Information site

Contains content that is intended to inform visitors, but not necessarily for commercial purposes, such as:, Free Internet Lexicon and Encyclopedia. Most government, educational and non-profit institutions have an informational site.

Java applet site

Contains software to run over the Web as a Web application.

Map site

A site contains street maps and may include other services such as route mapping, satellite images, geo tags.

  • Google maps
    • includes street maps, satellite view, and a 3D street view
  • Microsoft maps
    • probably the oldest mapping system, used extensively by businesses in conjunction with GPS tracking such as for courier companies
  • Open street map
    • Maps distributed under a creative commons license (cc-by-sa) that you can use so long as you cite the source and display the cc license.

Mirror (computing) site

A complete reproduction of a website.

News site

Similar to an information site, but dedicated to dispensing news and commentary. Many now have dedicated apps for mobile devices

Personal homepage

Run by an individual or a small group (such as a family) that contains information or any content that the individual wishes to include.

Phish site

A website created to fraudulently acquire sensitive information, such as passwords and credit card details, by masquerading as a trustworthy person or business (such as Social Security Administration, PayPal) in an electronic communication. (see Phishing).

  • Example:

Email of ebay fraud - click to enlarge Link from Email of ebay fraud - click to enlarge

Mail supposedly from eBay linking to a bogus eBay form (click to enlarge)

Political site

A site on which people may voice political views.

Pornography (porn) site

A site that shows pornographic images and videos.

Rating site

A site on which people can praise or disparage what is featured (e.g.

Review site

A site on which people can post reviews for products or services.

Search engine site

A site that provides general information and is intended as a gateway or lookup for other sites.

  • A pure example is Google
  • Extended type is Yahoo!, and iGoogle

Shock site

Includes images or other material that is intended to be offensive to most viewers

  • Examples:

Social network site

Infographic - The Conversation Prism: Developed in 2008 by Brian Solis, The Conversation Prism is a visual map of the social media landscape. It’s an ongoing study in digital ethnography that tracks dominant and promising social networks and organizes them by how they’re used in everyday life.

Sports Web Sites

Will stream sports to your PC and provide commentaries, and may provide live updates. Include specialist sites (e.g. , , ) that may be free to view or subscription based, and can be attached to News Sites.

Fantasy Sports allow users to create and manage their own virtual teams, or participate in a virtual sport online. One Google App is World Golf Tour, where you play a virtual round of golf for prize money. In 2011, The Australian Foxsports Fantasy Rugby World Cup offered a top prize of $5000 and "$200 cash for the Fantasy manager who scores the highest number of fantasy points each round!" (Premier Media Group Pty Ltd, 2011)[4].

Virtual Worlds

Sites that represent the real world in 3D.

Weather/ Meteorology Site


  • AccuWeather (used by Google Android)
  • Metservice
  • Apple Weather app (native to iPhone)



Natural events (e.g. earthquakes)

  • New Zealands main Meterology site Includes Earthquakes, Tsunamis, Volcanic, Tidal and Weather information
    • In Twitter use hash tag #eqnz when you feel an earthquake and send a tweet
  • Christchurch earthquake map Real time and historical maps (click on Big Quakes so see an animation of the 2010 earthquake) by Paul Nicholls of the University of Canterbury, New Zealand

Web portal site

A website that provides a starting point, a gateway, or portal, to other resources on the Internet or an intranet.


A website that details a couple's wedding event, often sharing stories, photos, and event information.

Wiki site

A site which users collaboratively edit (such as Wikipedia).

Anatomy of a Wiki (based on Wikipedia)

For more information see

Content Management Systems

Web sites can be developed in a variety of ways

  • Static Web sites (not able to be changed by users, and are sometimes called "brochure-ware"
  • In the simplest form can be a collection of pages written in HTML
    • These can be extended using Client-side (run from PC containing the Web-Browser) technologies such as JavaSript, Adobe Flash, and some of the HTML 5 extensions to provide some interactivity (e.g. games, measurement converters)
  • Dynamic Web Sites (usually the web page is connected to a database that runs on a Web Server, to allow the sites owner to collect user data (like personal details), or manage changing data (like airplane schedules - AirNZ, or books in a warehouse - Amazon )
    • Sites can be Hard-Coded using development tools such as
      • Microsoft's Visual Studio and the .Net (pronounced "dot-net") framework
      • Adobe's ColdFusion
      • PHP an open source language that can run on a web server
    • Sites can be built using template frameworks.
      • Google Sites. If you have a Google account, you can use Googles Site builder to create interactive sites. Google Documents Forms is used to provide the facility to create a form for user input.
    • Sites can be developed using Content Management Systems (database driven Web Sites)
      • These are written in one of the development tools, and provide the site developer with pages that are stored in a database. Forms are used to change the page contents. This wiki is an example and uses MediaWiki which is written in PHP with a MySQL database.


Started life as a blogging system but added "pages" which gives it site functionality

If you have a Windows computer you can quickly install a local version on your PC using Windows Platform Installer ( )


  • Developers
  • Examples
    • NACCQ (CITRENZ) Retrieved July 24, 2010 from .
      • Manages the web site for the National Advisory Committee on Computing Qualifications (NACCQ)
    • Paper Mulberry Cafe. Retrieved July 24, 2010 from
      • Manages the online presence for a cafe in Te Aute (between Hastings and Waipawa)
    • Book Smart Car Storage. Retrieved August 31, 2010 from
      • Manages the web site for Car Storage Company who will pick up & drop off your vehicle at the Aukland Airport-Nati22ru 21:01, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Google sites

Where to create a google site:

-[Gpatterson] 20:22, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Google blogger

Similar to Wordpress, blogger started as a blog but has added pages to enable web site creation. Integrates well with Google drive.


Free CMS / web site hosting.




VmvIcon References.png References

  1. (2009) Online auction::Planet Bid. Retrieved May 5, 2009 from
  2. Google Person Finder: a tool born of disaster, from Hurricane Katrina to Japan's quake, tsunami, (Apr 2, 2011) Los Angeles Times] Retrieved from
  3. Christchurch Earthquake Retrieved April 2, 2011 from
  4. Premier Media Group Pty Ltd (2011). Fantasy Rugby World Cup. Retrieved from
  5. Ross, A. (2010) 60+ Fresh and Inspirational WordPress Site Designs. Retrieved March 9, 2011 from

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Internet & Web development (2)/Course materials/Web Site Overview/Types. (2024). In WikiEducator/VirtualMV wiki. Retrieved June 15, 2024, from http:    (zotero)