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Canyon Beach - Visual Communications
Services/Digital Design and Development


Website Functionality Comparision

As we all know there is a very wide variety of sites out there, and everyday there seems to be a new way to use or interact with them. Dynamic and live content, on-line shopping for small businesses, e-commerce enterprise sites that remember your every like and dislike, Flash games, streaming media, web conferencing... these are just a few. You can find information about anything, buy anything, play anything, and keep in touch with anyone.

But with all this diversity you may be asking "What kind of internet presence will be best for my business?" This cannot be accurately answered without a close look at where you business is now, and where you want to be. However you probably have an idea from your current business processes, what your competitors are doing, and other sites you have visited. In general, all websites fall into four tiers:

  1. Electronic Brochure/Publication
  2. Basic Data Collection/Processing
  3. Basic E-Commerce
  4. Custom Web Applications/Entertainment
Below is a overview of some of kinds of content, functionality, interactivity, and a few links to sites that fall into each of these tiers. We have also included an estimated initial cost range to help you get an idea of budgets invloved. Though content elements can and are often integrated together, which make every project unique.
    • Content: Surveys/Questionnaires, Customer Service Requests/Communication, On-line Event Registration, Third-Party Forum/Chat Software Integration, Limited Database Integration, Password Protected Access, Basic Site Search Engine
    • Functionality: Dynamic Information Distribution/Collection
    • Interactivity: Significant
    • Initial Cost Range: $5,000 - $30,000*
    • Example Sites: www.palinet.org, www.prostatehealth.com, www.getcontactx.com, www.siliconphilly.com

    • Content: Third-Party E-Commerce Software Customization, Limited Customized E-Commerce Application; Inventory Tracking System Integration
    • Functionality: Dynamic Information Distribution/Collection, E-Commerce
    • Interactivity: Extensive
    • Initial Cost Range: $10,000 - $50,000*
    • Example Sites: www.pianolane.com, www.candlefantasies.com, www.101wine.com, www.vitamins.com

    • Content: Custom E-Commerce Enterprises (Extensive Inventory Tracking, Shipping Tracking, On-line Administration), Intranets, Forums, Live Chat/Messaging, Custom Database Applications and Data Processing, Extensive and Customized Search Engine/Directory, Flash/Shockwave Animation and Games, Streaming Media
    • Functionality: Any
    • Interactivity: Extensive
    • Initial Cost Range: $25,000+*
    • Example Sites: , www.hrwebxpress.com, www.ibx.com, www.boatus.com, www.atomfilms.com

* Cost varies on the level of research, content & functionality development, and if third-party software needed. Additional maintenance costs are determined by the level of dynamic content, ongoing updates, level of quality control, and other factors.



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