A website or web site (often shortened to a site) is a collection of webpages, that is, documents accessible via the World Wide Web on the Internet. The pages of a website will be accessed from a common root URL, the homepage, and usually reside on the same physical server. The URLs of the pages organize them into a hierarchy, although the hyperlinks between them control how the reader perceives the overall structure.

Some (parts of) websites require a subscription, with a fee to be paid e.g. every month, or just a free registration. Examples include many Internet pornography sites, parts of many news sites, gaming sites, and sites providing real-time stock market data.


A website will often be the work of one person, one organization, or on a particular topic, or have a particular purpose. This is quite a blurry definition, given the hypertext nature of the web: the whole of Wikipedia forms a website, but whether the Meta-Wikipedia pages are part of the same website or a sister website is open to debate.

Web sites are written in HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) and are accessed using special software called web browsers. Plugins are available for browsers which allow them to show active content, such as Flash, Shockwave or applets written in Java. Some interactive content may also be generated with JavaScript, support for which is built-in for most browsers. An emerging standard called Dynamic HTML is starting to make an appearance, though no standard has been formally adopted yet.

Types of websites

There are numerous types of websites, each specializing in a particular service or use. A few types of websites include:

Many websites are a mixture of types. For example, a business web site may promote the business's products, but may also host informative documents, such as white papers. There are also numerous sub-categories to the ones listed above. For example, a porn site is a specific type of eCommerce site or business site (that is, it is trying to sell memberships for access to its site). A fan site may be a vanity site on which the administrator is paying homage to a celebrity.

Many business websites, have all the appearance of brochures—that is an advertisement that can be strolled around. Some websites act as vehicles to communicate with other people via webchat.

The content of a website is constrained by the hosting computer's power, and also legally, e.g. by copyright, pornography laws, etc.


Mousetrapping is a technique employed by some "aggressive" commercial websites (especially pornographic ones) that prevents one from leaving it, depending on web browser settings.


The Webby Awards are a set of awards presented to the world's "best" websites.


As noted above, there are several different spellings for this term. Although "website" is becoming the most commonly used, particularly by newspapers and other media, academia (and some dictionaries such as Oxford still prefer to use the two-word spelling "Web site", with the first word capitalized. An alternate of the two-word spelling is not capitalized. As with many other newly created words, it may take some time before a common spelling is finalized. (This controversy also applies to derivatives of Web such as Web master/webmaster, etc.)

See also

[[de:Internetpr�senz]] eo:Retejo fr:Site Web ko:웹 사이트 ia:Sito del web it:Sito web he:אתר אינטרנט nl:Website ja:ウェブサイト [[pt:S�tio]] simple:Website sv:Webbplats uk:Сайт zh:網站