What is the Purpose of a Website?


A website is more than just an online necessity; it’s a dynamic tool integral to a business’s success, capable of engaging customers and driving growth. Follow a step-by-step guide to align your website’s purpose with your business goals, including understanding your audience, defining website objectives and implementing strategic content and features. Discover how Airbnb shifted from a typical booking website to a purpose driven platform that transformed the travel industry.


“Is a website really necessary, or is it just a glorified digital leaflet?” is something that’s on the minds of countless business owners. This common question, while understandable, barely scratches the surface of what a website truly represents. It’s not just about having an online presence or a sleek design to impress; it’s about discovering and harnessing a more profound, strategic purpose. The purpose of a website is for it to be your most compelling storyteller, your most effective salesperson and your ultimate brand ambassador, all rolled into a pixel perfect package.

The Purpose of a Website is More Than Just an Entry Point

Think of your favourite coffee shop. What lures you in? Surely, it’s not just the fact that it has walls and a door. It’s the whole shebang – the aroma, the beautiful decor and that ineffable charm that is free Wi-Fi. That’s what a physical store is all about. It’s an experience, not just a space.

Now, let’s apply this to your website. Many view their website as no more than a digital door sign for their business. Aim to be like the coffee shop, your website should be an experijence. Its design, ease of use and content all contribute to how customers perceive and interact with your brand. A well-designed website can make visitors feel understood and valued, compelling them to explore more.

So, if you’re treating your website like nothing more than a door sign, you’re basically choosing to not say hello when customers enter. By rethinking its role, you can transform it from a simple entry point into a compelling experience where every click gets your audience closer to know you, and above all, how you can solve their problems.

Know Your Website’s Purpose

Determining the true purpose of your website is crucial for leveraging its full potential. Follow this step-by-step guide to help you discover and define what your website should achieve. You’ll have a clearer vision of your website’s role and how it can support your business goals.

  1. Identify Your Business Goals
    • Start by listing your overall business goals. Are you looking to increase sales, raise brand awareness, expand your market or enhance customer loyalty?
    • Understanding your business goals is the first step in aligning your website’s purpose with them.
  2. Know Your Target Audience
    • Who are your customers? Create detailed customer personas to understand their needs, preferences and particularly online behaviours.
    • Tools such as Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, Hubspot, Ahrefs and Hotjar can be a great help with audience research.
  3. Define Key Website Objectives
    • Based on your business goals and customer insights, define specific objectives for your website. These could range from generating leads, providing customer support, to educating your audience about your products or services.
    • Be as specific as possible – this will help in measuring the success of your website later on.
  4. Audit Existing Content and Features
    • Take a close look at your current website (if you have one). Does it align with the objectives you’ve set?
    • Identify gaps and ditch outdated content or features that no longer serve your defined objectives.
  5. Plan for New Content and Features
    • Plan for new content or features that align with your objectives. This could include new blog posts, a FAQ section, live chat, customer testimonials or an e-commerce platform.
    • Prioritise these based on what will most effectively meet your objectives and resonate with your audience.
  6. Create an Implementation Timeline
    • Develop a timeline for implementing these changes. This should include milestones for content creation, design updates and new features rollout.
    • Remember that website development is an ongoing process; regularly revisit and update your site.
  7. Measure and Adjust
    • Set up tools to measure the performance of your website. Use metrics relevant to your objectives, such as conversion rates, average time on site and bounce rates.
    • Regularly review these metrics and be prepared to make adjustments to keep your website aligned with your business goals.
  8. Engage with Your Audience for Feedback
    • Seek feedback from your customers about your website. This can be done through surveys, feedback forms or social media engagements. Use this feedback to make continuous improvements to your site.
    • Your website isn’t a monologue; it’s a dialogue. Sure, talk about yourself, but also seek feedback and actually listen.

Case Study: How Airbnb’s Purpose-Driven Website Redefined Their Business

Before Airbnb was a household name, it was a concept struggling for recognition in the competitive travel industry. Its initial website functioned merely as a booking interface. The turning point for Airbnb came when it shifted its focus from being a simple booking platform to a purpose-driven website that resonated with users’ desires for unique and authentic travel experiences.

Strategic Shift: Understanding the Website’s Purpose

  1. From Booking Platform to Community Hub Airbnb reimagined its website as a community hub, not just for transactions but to connect travellers and hosts globally. This shift in perspective was crucial for the website’s evolution.
  2. Fostering Trust and Authenticity Trust was identified as a key component for success in the shared economy. Airbnb integrated robust review systems and detailed user profiles, making the website a reliable platform for both hosts and guests.
  3. Emphasising Unique Travel Experiences Airbnb’s website started to showcase not just accommodations but unique experiences, transforming the brand from a lodging option to a source of memorable travel experiences.

The Transformation and Its Impact

  1. Enhanced User Experience and Engagement The redesigned website, focused on user experience and community building, led to increased user engagement. The easy-to-navigate interface, rich content and community features encouraged repeated use and loyalty.
  2. Building a Global Brand Through its website, Airbnb established a global brand identity centered on unique, local travel experiences. This branding helped differentiate Airbnb in the travel industry, making it a go-to platform for modern travellers seeking more than just a place to stay.
  3. Exponential Growth in Users and Listings As the website evolved, Airbnb saw a significant increase in both the number of users and listings. The platform’s ease of use, trust elements and focus on unique experiences attracted a vast global user base.
  4. Expansion into New Markets The success and versatility of the website allowed Airbnb to expand into new markets, including luxury accommodations and Airbnb Experiences, further cementing its position as a comprehensive travel platform.

Airbnb’s transformation from a simple booking site to a purpose-driven platform exemplifies the profound impact of aligning a website’s purpose with business objectives and user needs. This strategic realignment not only redefined Airbnb’s business model but also revolutionised the travel industry. It highlights the power of a purpose-driven website in creating meaningful connections, building a brand and driving business growth.

The Bottom Line

Your website holds the potential to be a powerful tool that drives your business forward. It’s about strategic integration, where every element of your website aligns with and supports your business objectives. A purpose-driven website means that it regularly revisits and adapts to ensure it continues to serve its KPIs effectively. Last but not least, it’s about recognising that your website is as integral to your business as any team member, strategy or policy.

So, as we conclude, ask yourself: Is your website just a door sign, or is it a living, evolving extension of your business? Does it merely exist, or does it actively contribute to your business goals? By taking the time to fully understand the purpose of your website, you can unlock its full potential and turn it into one of your most valuable assets.

Got a project you want to talk about?

Email us at hello@pixelhero.com.au or use our contact form.

Pixel Hero | Web Design Sydney Agency

© Pixel Hero 2024
/ All Rights Reserved
/ Privacy