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Everything You Need to Know about Designing Microsites

Microsite Design Tips

Last Updated: Aug 8, 2022

Microsites are a powerful tool for marketing and branding. They allow you to create a focused, targeted online presence that can be very effective in driving traffic and conversions. However, designing an effective microsite can be a challenge. This article will cover everything you need to know about designing microsites, from strategy and planning to design and development. By the end, you'll have all the information you need to create a successful microsite for your business.

So let's get started!

First things first: what is a microsite?

A microsite is a small website that is typically used to support a larger website or campaign. It usually has its own domain name and distinct branding, but it may also be integrated with the main site. Microsites are often used to promote a specific product, campaign, or event and can be very effective in driving traffic and conversions.

A microsite can be a great way to focus your marketing efforts and create a more targeted online presence. However, designing an effective microsite is not always easy. There are a few key things you need to keep in mind if you want to create a successful microsite for your business.

How effective are microsites?

Microsites are often used to promote a specific product, campaign, or event and can be very effective in driving traffic and conversions. In fact, studies have shown that microsites can actually outperform traditional websites in terms of conversion rates.

An example of a successful microsite is the "Gmail for your domain" microsite that Google launched in 2007. The site was designed to promote the then-new Gmail service for businesses. It successfully drove traffic and conversions, and it helped Gmail become one of the most popular email providers for businesses.

However, it's important to remember that not all microsites are successful. In order to create a successful microsite, you need to carefully plan and design it with your specific goals in mind.

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What should a microsite consist of?

When designing a microsite, it's important to keep your goals in mind. What do you want to achieve with your microsite? Is it meant to generate leads or sales? Drive traffic to your main website? Or promote a specific product, campaign, or event? Once you know your goals, you can start planning your microsite content and design.

Your microsite should be focused and easy to navigate. It should have a clear purpose and message, and the user should be able to accomplish their goals without getting lost or confused. The content on your microsite should be well-written and relevant to your target audience. And finally, your microsite should be designed in a way that reflects your brand and helps you achieve your marketing goals.

What are the benefits of a microsite?

There are many benefits to creating a microsite. A microsite can be a great way to focus your marketing efforts and create a more targeted online presence. It can also be used to drive traffic to your main website or generate leads and sales. Additionally, a microsite can help you promote a specific product, campaign, or event.

Some of the other benefits of a microsite include:

- Allowing you to target a specific audience or market

- Helping you build brand awareness

- Giving you the ability to test new ideas or campaigns

- Creating an extra touchpoint for your customers

- Enabling you to track results and conversions effectively

Microsite or Website?

The first question you need to answer is whether a microsite or a website would be more appropriate for your needs. There are several factors you need to consider, including:

- The purpose of the site: What are you trying to achieve with the site? A microsite may be a good option if you're looking to promote a specific product or campaign. A website may be a better choice if you're looking to build a comprehensive online presence for your business.

- The scope of the project: How much content and functionality do you need? A microsite may be sufficient if you only need a few pages and don't need any complex features or functionality. If you need a large website with numerous pages and features, a website may be a better option.

- The budget: How much are you willing to spend on the project? Microsites can be less expensive to develop than websites, but they may also have limited functionality. A microsite may be a good option if you're on a tight budget. However, if you're looking for a comprehensive website with all the bells and whistles, you may need to budget for a larger project.

- The timeline: How much time do you have to complete the project? Microsites can often be developed more quickly than websites but may also have less functionality. A microsite may be your best option if you're working on a tight deadline.

Microsites vs Landing Pages?

A microsite is a standalone website that is typically used to promote a specific product, campaign, or event. A landing page is a single web page that is designed to capture leads or drive sales. Both microsites and landing pages can be used to achieve specific marketing goals. However, there are some key differences between the two:

- Microsites are typically larger and more comprehensive than landing pages. They can have multiple pages and sections, and they often include more content and information.

- Landing pages are typically focused on a single conversion goal, such as capturing a lead or making a sale. Microsites may also have conversion goals, but they typically provide more information and resources than a landing page.

- Microsites usually have their own domain name, while landing pages are typically housed on an existing website.

- Microsites are standalone websites, while landing pages are designed to be part of a larger website.

So, which should you choose? It really depends on your specific needs and goals. If you're looking to promote a specific product or campaign, a microsite may be a good option. If you're looking to generate leads or sales, a landing page may be your best bet.

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How to plan and design your microsite

Now that we've covered some of the basics, let's take a look at how you can plan and design an effective microsite for your business.

Define Your Goals

The first step is to define your goals. What do you want to accomplish with your microsite? Are you looking to promote a specific product or campaign? Drive traffic to your main website? Or convert visitors into customers or leads? Once you have a clear understanding of your goals, you can start planning your microsite.

Choose Your Domain Name

Your domain name is an important part of your microsite's branding. You'll want to choose a domain name that is relevant to your site's content and easy to remember. If you're promoting a specific product or campaign, you may want to include keywords in your domain name so that it appears higher in search results.

Plan Your Site's Content

Now it's time to start planning your site's content. What information do you want to include on your microsite? How will you organize it? And what kind of tone do you want to set? It's important to have a clear idea of what you want to include on your site before you start designing it.

Content is key in any website but even more so in a microsite. The content on your site should be focused, relevant, and targeted to your audience. If you're unsure what to include, start by brainstorming a list of relevant topics to your product or campaign. You can also look at other microsites for inspiration.

Plan out your SEO Strategy

SEO is important for any website, but it's especially important for microsites. Since microsites usually have their own domain name and branding, they can be more difficult to find in search results. That's why it's important to plan your SEO strategy before you launch your site.

Create a Mockup

Once you understand your site's content well, you can start creating a mockup. This is a basic outline of your site's layout and design. A mockup will help you visualize how your site will look and help you determine what kind of design elements you'll need.

Design Your Site

Now it's time to start designing your microsite. This is where you'll really bring your site to life. When you're designing your site, keep your goals in mind and make sure that your design is focused and easy to navigate. Pay attention to the overall look and feel of your site as well as the small details like typography and images.

Lumavate is a digital experience creator platform that allows you to quickly and easily create microsites, apps, and more. Lumavate offers a drag-and-drop interface, templates, and easy-to-use tools so you can create a beautiful microsite without any coding or design experience.

With hundreds of applications and patterns to choose from, Lumavate is the best way to complete your microsite project quickly and easily. Get started today with a free trial, or book a demo with one of our specialists. Click here for more.

Test and Launch Your Site

Before you launch your site, it's important to test it out. Make sure all of the links work and that the content is accurate. You may also want to run some usability tests to see how people interact with your site. Once you're confident that everything is working correctly, you can launch your microsite!

Check up on your microsite regularly to ensure that the content is still relevant and accurate. You may also want to make changes or updates based on feedback from your users.

You'll also want to check the conversion rates for your microsite and ensure it meets your goals. If you're not seeing the results you want, don't be afraid to make changes to your design or content. Google Analytics is a great tool for tracking your microsite's performance.

Examples of Good Microsites

Here are some examples of well-designed microsites:

The Verge's iPhone 7 Review Microsite

This microsite from The Verge does a great job of promoting their iPhone 7 review. The design is clean and focused, and the content is easy to navigate. The site also includes links back to The Verge's main website.

Nike's Better World Microsite

This microsite from Nike does a great job of promoting their "Better World" campaign. The site is designed to be visually engaging and easy to navigate. It also includes lots of information about the campaign as well as ways for users to get involved.

Taco Bell's Web Store Microsite

This microsite from Taco Bell promotes their web store. The site includes a clean design and easy navigation. It also features prominently the items that are available for purchase.

These are just a few microsites that have accomplished their goal of reaching a wide audience while still providing focused and relevant content. If you're looking for inspiration for your own microsite, these examples are a great place to start.

How much does a microsite cost?

The cost of a microsite can vary depending on the features you want to include and the level of customization you need. Generally, you can expect to pay anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000 for a simple microsite. If you need more complex features or want to include an eCommerce store, the cost can increase significantly.

When you're planning your budget for a microsite, be sure to factor in the cost of hosting, domain names, design, development, content creation, and maintenance. These are all important components of a successful microsite and can add up quickly.

Lumavate helps with the expensive prices other microsite developers charge. For $50 a month, you can develop basic digital experiences with ease. The $400 per month version is a more professional-grade microsite solution. If you are looking to start, sign up for a free account today.

How can Lumavate’s DXP help with designing microsites?

Now that you know everything there is to know about microsites, it's time to get started on your own project! Lumavate makes it easy to create beautiful and effective microsites without any coding or design experience. Book a demo with one of our specialists to learn more.

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