July 26, 2022

Different Types of Website Structures: Which is Best for Your Business?

There are a couple of different types of website structures that you can choose from when building your business website. Each one has its own set of benefits and drawbacks that can affect your business in different ways. So, which website structure is best for your business? In this blog post, we will discuss each type in detail and help you decide which one is best for you.

How Many Different Types of Website Structures Are There?

There are four main types of website structure. Although there are other options, we're going to stick with the traditional methods because they are the most effective. Before considering any other types, you should give the site structure examples below serious thought. If something isn't broken, why fix it? Although the decision is ultimately yours, we will provide you with the information you need to make an informed choice. Your website design plan will aid in deciding which option to select that best suits your customers' needs while interacting with your site when deciding how to plan a site structure that fits your needs.

4 Main Types of Website Structures and How to Utilize Them

There are four primary types of website structures that we will discuss in this blog post. These are:

1. Hierarchical Website Structure (Aka Tree Model)

The most typical structure type is the hierarchical model. It's also the most simple to comprehend. These can be found on websites with a lot of pages and information. It consists of a home page, top-level pages, and then subpages or child pages, to put it simply. Although there may be internal links, the website hierarchy structure favors a very straightforward top-down approach.

How to Utilize the Hierarchical Website Structure

Utilizing a hierarchical site structure is pretty easy. It's best for sites with a lot of content that needs to be well organized. This type of structure is great for users because it's easy to navigate. However, it can be difficult to maintain if you have a lot of pages and subpages.

The placement of pages must strike a balance between being logically sound and keeping in mind that users' ability to navigate the site freely must not be restricted. Through navigational links on every page, options to move from one area of a website to another can be provided.

The hierarchical structure is best suited for websites with a lot of content. If your website doesn't have a lot of pages, you may want to consider a different structure.

2. Linear Website Structure (Aka Sequential Model)

The linear structure is the polar opposite of the hierarchical model. Rather than having a bunch of pages that branch off from the home page, all of the pages are arranged in a single line. There is no branching off, and users can only access the pages in the order that they are presented.

How to Utilize the Linear Website Structure

Without subcategories or child pages, this type of website structure is typical of small businesses with a few pages on their website. It isn't extensive or hierarchical, as the name would imply. When viewed from a visual sitemap, it is created by having the main page, homepage, or landing page to arrive on and a number of other fundamental parent pages to visit that appear in a linear order below the homepage, or running left to right. In other words, they lead a visitor through a predetermined order.

It can occasionally surprise a crawler when a site is in a linear or sequential structure. Fear not; it is modifiable. Why did the site crawler make it look this way? is a common query we receive via email and chat support. The response is sometimes websites are just that straightforward because that's how they were created. It is just how the crawler interprets it; it is not an error. If you believe your site to be more complex than that, the crawl was worthwhile because it allowed you to restructure it in a way that will better serve the needs of your users. Additionally, a user-friendly website can boost your search engine optimization (SEO).

3. Webbed Website Structure (Aka Network Model)

The webbed structure is a hybrid of the previous two structures. It consists of a home page and a series of subpages, but there are also a series of links that connect the pages together. This creates a web-like structure, hence the name.

How to Utilize the Webbed Website Structure

The webbed structure is best suited for websites with a lot of content that needs to be well organized. This type of structure is great for users because it's easy to navigate. It works great or e-commerce websites, including those with product pages and retail data for physical stores. Although there will be a homepage for visitors to land on, the rest of the site's structure aims to enable quick access to pages by way of extensive internal linking.

The point is that it makes it simple for users to have an experience that suits whatever their needs are, even if they change in the middle of the process. This almost feels unstructured, but that's the point. It doesn't take much work to make a decision to take a different path after a few clicks have been made. Although to call it freeform would be pushing it, this is a more laid-back method of travel. Since there is no predetermined structure to adhere to, it can be altered to suit the needs of the site as long as it is advantageous to the users you want to use it.

4. Database Website Structure (AKA dynamic model)

The database model is the most complex of all the structures. This type of website pulls information from a database and displays it on the page. The pages are generated dynamically, which means that they're created when the user requests them.

A bottom-up approach is used to shape the dynamic database structure. Numerous factors should be taken into account, especially the content's metadata and taxonomies. Think of this as the default choice for enabling users to design their own search tool experience. A great example of this is Google.

How to Utilize the Database Website Structure

The website for a bank is a great illustration of database structuring. When you log in, the personally relevant information is displayed. Let's say this was constructed the old-fashioned way. In that case, Google Nest Thermostats were unable to conserve enough energy to run the servers required to rebuild each individual site each time you make a purchase. Instead, the information is retrieved from a database and presented to you.

You, therefore, have a website that contains a lot of blank spaces. The first step is creating a database that will function with the system of your choice. The next step is to create a website that can use and access that database in a secure and reliable manner.

Final Thoughts

The main takeaway here is that selecting the proper structure is crucial because, regardless of the type of site, everything on your site depends on a structure as a base. Keep in mind that making the best decision for your chosen structure requires considering a lot of specific details. Business objectives, the findings of the content audit, and some trial-and-error should all be taken into account. The most important thing is that the needs of your users always come first.

We Make Digital Marketing Work for You

There are lots of challenges running a business. Finding customers doesn't have to be one of them.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram