This is the first in a series of how-to articles by Vivant on things that matter in branding, marketing and digital presence for businesses. We hope they clear a few things up for you!

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In today’s marketing sphere, “website” is a vague word. There are so many different types out there these days, and it’s sometimes difficult to know what’s best for you. We advise our clients on what would work best for their type of business, but very often, business owners aren’t really sure when they walk in the door. Here are a few of the major website types that are great for marketing. We’ll start with the basics.

ONE-PAGER: This is the smallest of website types, and often the most popular. It’s only a main page – no sub-pages, menus, or any other bells or whistles. While it’s small, it has a lot of advantages: it’s very affordable (since most agencies will quote you per page of a website, and this is only one), it’s easily customisable and it can convey your business’ message very effectively. Information is available all in one convenient place, and with dynamic features, it can look great. Some of the one-pagers we’ve done lately are The Cosmetic Village and Wizkids Educare.

LANDING PAGE: This is also, strictly speaking, a one-pager, but a landing page is most often linked to a larger existing website (they can stand alone too, though). It’s like a standalone site that is attached to the parent site – think things like car specials and launches, limited-time offers, special packages and so on. They’re product-specific, focused and geared towards a particular audience in terms of design and content. They can be completely different in look and feel to the parent site, but because they’re geared towards having high traffic in a short time, they’re done to specification.

MULTI-PAGER: A more comprehensive site, the multi-pager is possibly the most common type of website on the internet today. It’s generally a home page with one or more sub-pages, usually things like About, Services, Blog, Contact and so on. This very website is a multi-pager. The advantage is that you get a lot of room to manoeuvre – you can add various features on every page to accurately represent your business offering. Recent multi-pagers we’ve done include Bokgabane Safaris, TLT Accountants, TyrePlus and Medi-COP.

E-COMMERCE: When you have to make the sale, an online store can make all the difference! Internet shopping is becoming increasingly popular, even in South Africa, with the local internet situation improving every year. E-commerce sites are expensive to set up, but when you’ve got a successful and broad product range, it is often a worthwhile investment to allow your clients to make purchases online. You generally need an agreement with a shipping partner before you get yourself an e-commerce site. Vivant has done e-commerce sites for the likes of Bruce’s Cycles, Indalo, PlusFab and more.

PRODUCT SHOWCASE SITE: Similar to an e-commerce site, a product showcase site allows you to have a gallery of products in your range but without the expensive secure purchase engines built in. These are static galleries where online shopping isn’t an option, but clients can contact a main connection at your business to request a quote, set up an appointment or order a bespoke custom item. These are usually for more expensive items (like cars) or highly-customisable things that are made to order and/or not kept in stock.

Over the years, Vivant has done all of these kinds of websites and even a few custom pages that are one-of-a-kind. The beauty of the internet is that you can do almost anything with your website design; just remember, though, if your ideas run away with you, the quote might too!

We hope this has been informative – look out for our next article in the How To series by Vivant Studios.

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