Whether it’s a microsite or a website, both serve many business needs. Websites are representatives of online business, while microsites are more minor or micro versions of the same websites but serve different purposes. Both support digital campaigns and are a part of a marketing strategy. The website, as the face of a brand, serves as a gateway for the audience. It is a digital hub where marketers and content makers showcase the business’s offers to the clients. The purpose of a website is simple because it speaks of the brand, its message, products, and services. There are different kinds of websites. Some are devoted to news, reporting, story-telling, etc.
The real artists are the designers and web developers who differentiate between the website and microsite through the backend programming and design. For example, when a site represents the e-commerce business and its aspects, then it’s a website, and when it targets a single campaign or product, it becomes a microsite.
Today we shall highlight how both are similar and different when compared.
What Does a Microsite Bring to the Table
Microsites are a different breed when compared to websites in their purpose. They require a dedicated style of picturization and representation of a brand and its content. The content supports the underlying purpose of the campaigns in motion. Usually, microsites comprise campaigns for new products and services. It also carries different objectives and has programming needs. It is a digital asset that exists outside the premises of the actual brand website or homepage.
Microsites vs. Websites
The microsite has a different time duration than a website. The sites have a long life compared to the microsites because they give the public a general message out there. At the same time, a microsite raises awareness of a product launch, campaign, testing strategy, etc. It is goal-centric because when the goal is met, the business may get rid of the microsite. People tend to confuse the two because they are both fundamentally the same at the mechanical level. It would not be wrong if we say a microsite is a subset of a website.
Websites and microsites have different domain names. Even though they are both from the same company and represent the same business, they still have different URLs. A microsite requires a domain name and a hosting package to keep it alive, running, and active. They also need regular maintenance and upgrades to the content to stay relevant to the current market practices.
The main difference between the two lies in the purpose and goal of the two. If the website is the heart and soul of your online existence, then the microsite is the heart and soul of a particular campaign, event, or product. The website is the primary connection of the audience with the brand. In contrast, a microsite is a secondary link. Audience may need to visit your website after checking out the microsite for general company info and an overview. It attracts the audience to learn and interact with the brand and what it does.
A microsite has a specific purpose and targets particular audience needs. But the website is independent of that merit.
A Microsite is Not:
- A full-fledged company website that has information on all its products and services.
- A landing page that aims to collect leads and conversions.
- A subdomain for a website
- Small, targeted, and highly focused segment subset of a website
- Packed with product or campaign-specific information which is unique and not available on the leading site
- Supported by its own marketing strategy, social media, and campaigns.
- Temporary, seasonal, or need-based
When to Use a Website and a Microsite
Under the following conditions, consider a website:
- If your target is brand awareness
- If you want to position your business in the audience
- If you want to speak about the company and its different aspects
Consider a Microsite
- If you want to narrow down the focus
- If your target is a niche for a specific product or offer
- If you want brand authority
- If you are looking for top-of-the-funnel targeting
We hope now you know when and where to use a microsite vs website. The difference mainly lies in the purpose and projection of each.