HomeInternetWeb Portal vs Website: What’s The Difference?

Web Portal vs Website: What’s The Difference?

website-builder Are websites and web portals different? If they are, then how do they differ? In our article, we’ll compare these two solutions in detail and provide you with quick recommendations on which one to build for your business.

To better understand the difference between a web portal and a website, let’s look into their definitions.

Website Definition

As one of the most widely spread software solutions, a website is used to get specific information on the Internet. So, what’s a website?

It’s typically defined as a set of web pages interlinked together and hosted from a single domain. To access any website’s pages, you need to follow the URL that unites a series of web pages.

Websites can satisfy users’ needs but also serve businesses. They leverage a website to sell products and services to their target audience. When it comes to website classification, there are three types that businesses use for their purposes, including static, dynamic, and interactive.

Types of Websites

Static Dynamic Interactive
The content isn’t automatically updated after every user’s visit. The content is updated automatically on a regular basis. They provide opportunities for interaction and communication with users through comments and feedback sections.

Web Portal Definition

According to Techopedia, a website portal is a special website that often serves as the single point of access information. Compared to a website, a portal is used for offering multiple services that can be reached by navigation, notifications, etc. and are provided only for authorized users via their personal accounts. Among the common types of portals are horizontal and vertical ones.

Types of Web Portals

Horizontal Portals Vertical Portals
They comprise the information about different companies operating in the same business domain.

(ex. educational, governmental portals, etc.)

They are focused on a specific company’s services.


(ex. college tender, billing portals, etc.)

Website vs Web Portal Comparison: 4 Key Aspects

website ux design Now we’re coming with the four aspects that make a web portal different from a traditional website.

  • Portals provide broader content offering different types of services and information about them. They often have interactive features such as full-screen videos, drag and drop elements, maps, etc. for better user engagement. To implement these interactive, more complex elements, web developers make use of modular software architecture.
  • User Experience. It takes more time to create UX for website portals that will meet the needs of different groups. Being more complex, a web portal’s UX is usually tested if it allows each type of targeted user to have an intuitive and user-friendly experience while making a purchase or ordering a service.
  • Portal’s content is managed by different specialists that typically include marketers, PR managers, sales managers, support teams, etc. They take responsibility for different types of content, so access to web portal administration is multi-level, which means that different administrators are allowed to edit the website content based on their level of access.
  • Legal Regulations and Security. Belonging to companies that operate in compliance with regulatory rules, personal data protection, etc., website portals should address these challenges. When it comes to web portal development, it means a multi-layer access policy, an audit path analysis, etc.

Should You Build a Website or a Portal?

Web Design For Website It depends on your business needs and the goals you want to reach. Below you’ll find a couple of recommendations on what type of web development would suit you better.

You’d better opt for building a web portal if you strive to meet the needs below:

  • You want to provide services or products to a more specific audience.
  • You need advanced control over multiple users’ access and content management rights.
  • You plan to integrate several systems into a single management system with a visual design.

It’s a great idea to build a simple website if your goals are the following ones:

  • Your platform’s focus is on delivering and managing content.
  • Your site needs to operate separately from the internal network or system.
  • You plan to draw traffic from a more general audience.

In a Nutshell

Although web portals and websites are quite different in their complexity level, design, content management, and other aspects, you may need to partner with a web development company to build your web solution from scratch. With a team of experienced web developers, UX/UI designers, and QA engineers, you can build a well-designed platform, either a website or portal, that will bring your business maximum benefits.