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Reasons for a Website

by Ron Kurtus (revised 13 July 2005)

Companies, organizations and individuals want websites. Each has their own reasons.

Companies want to use a website as a form of advertising, as a means of communicating with the customer, and in some cases as a way to directly sell their products. Many individuals have websites to display their skills and interests, especially as a way to advance their careers. Finally, there are many people who have websites mainly for their own expression. Many have blogs for writing their thoughts.

It is important to know and define your reasons or motivation for having a website.

Questions you may have include:

This lesson will answer those questions.



Companies

The reasons a company will have a website are:

Promotion

Many companies originally set up their websites as a means to advertise and promote the products or services they provide. Now most have expanded their web mission to include providing customer support and selling their goods. Some also are including useful information about their products or area of interest.

Individuals may often set up personal web pages to promote themselves. These are vanity sites, where people may include pictures and material about themselves and their families. Sometimes they include a resume, if they are looking for a job.

Individuals and organizations may set up a website to promote some philosophy, concept or belief. Religious sites and non-profit organizations are examples of such sites. There are also sites by individuals that promote and organize various causes.

Providing information

The purpose of many websites are simply to provide information in some area of interest. some are educational in nature. There are also sites that specialize in news, sports information, medical information and such. Some of these sites may also promote or advertise the sponsoring company, as well as selling products.

Some educational sites—such as those from colleges and universities—sell their information and courses.

Selling

The sole purpose of many sites is e-commerce. Sites that sell things online include Amazon.com and eTrade. Even an auction site, such as eBay, is an e-commerce site of sorts.

Professionals

People in business for themselves or in a profession will often have a website in order to promote their skills and display what they have done. It is like an online resume.

Often such people will include a portfolio with samples of their work.

Individuals

Some individuals have what can be called vanity sites, where they have pictures of their family and pets, post stories they have written, and include other personal items. Blogs are becoming a very popular alternative to have your own website. Blog sites provide a number of pages where a person can express his or her thoughts. Many include the capability to include pictures and even audio files.

Summary

The reasons people or companies establish web sites are for promotion, to provide a service, or to sell something. Many people just do it to express themselves. You should be aware of your own motivation so you can effectively achieve your web goals.


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