The majority of external websites on the Internet are designed to capture an audience and maximize conversion time. The goal is to draw users deep into the website and intrigue their curiosity with relevant and interesting information. By contrast, intranet sites are designed to be viewed by audiences inside an organization and are hidden from the larger World Wide Web.
While the same technology is utilized between the two, the design and content vary significantly. The key towards building a successful intranet site is to assemble relevant information, organize it into a logical system, and efficiently deliver key components. The primary goal is to allow individuals to obtain information quickly and move on to their next task.
Internet and intranet are two very different information spaces, which should contain different user interface designs. Let’s take a look at how they vary along several dimensions.
Users: Intranet users consist of employees or students who have significant information related to an organization, its structure, and specific terminology. Customers who know less about your company use an Internet site.
Tasks: While an Intranet is used for everyday work inside a company along with complex applications, and Internet site is generally used to find out information related to products or services.
Type of Information: Many Intranets contain reports, human resource information, and detailed components of a business whereas an Internet site consists of marketing information and customer support.
Amount of Information: Public websites contain limited strategic information that is easy for an audience to take in. An Intranet will have between ten and a hundred times as many pages due to the nature of the information being shared amongst employees.
Bandwidth and Cross-Platforms: Intranet sites run much fast than their counterparts, making it feasible to use rich graphics and multimedia. Furthermore, designs need to allow for more advanced page content, making them less cross-platform compatible.
Most importantly, an Intranet site and an Internet site are contrasting information spaces. The first should be much more task-oriented and less promotional. Additionally, an Intranet will need a stronger navigational system than an Internet site due to the large amount of information that must move between servers. Brian Cozzi, Inc. has experience in designing and developing major Intranet websites for large corporations. They are well aware of how each system works and aim towards providing a seamless user experience.
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