A Guide to Ecommerce Microsites: How, When, and Why to Build Them

Ashutosh Chandra | 10th August 2020

Most businesses these days have a website, whether for ecommerce or just brand presence. Websites are a great opportunity to build traffic, share brand values, showcase products, and earn customers. But what if a business wants to launch something totally experimental? Something that might not fit within the structure of its current website? What if they want to try out a whole new look and feel, or experiment with a vertical they’ve never previously tried? Enter and build a microsite. 


What is a Microsite?

A microsite is an individual web page or a small cluster of pages, that live entirely outside of the brand’s core domain. It focuses on one or a small handful of products. A microsite has its own URL structure, its own look, and feel.

Difference of a Microsite from a Landing Page

Certainly, there are similarities between the two. Both are much simpler than a regular website and are generally made for a specific campaign. Both microsite and a landing page can be temporary, seasonal, or for a limited time. 

But the difference is that landing pages consist of only one page, whereas a microsite can include multiple pages. The main noticeable difference is landing pages are published on its parent’s website whereas a microsite on an entirely different domain.

Some essential ecommerce microsite tips:


  • Keep it simple – Keep a few steps to checkout, and don’t flood visitors with information. Focus on only what they need to know. Only give them the information that’s essential for them to make the purchase.


  • Use it as an opportunity for bigger contracts – Most of the customers have their first exposure to a business’s website is through their microsite. After seeing what the platform could do, some of them decide to migrate to their full website.


Ecommerce microsite best practices:


  • Tell a story unique to your target audience.



Microsites enable us to target different types of people. Let’s suppose we were selling a food product and were looking to target home cooks, restaurant chefs, and food truck vendors. Each of them would use the product in a different, nuanced way. We could launch siloed microsites to tell each of those audiences a unique story, based on their needs. When someone comes to that relevant page for that relevant audience, it tells a story that’s related to them individually. It increases your conversion and makes it worth the investment.”



  • A/B test effectively.



When building out a microsite, the goal is to keep it simple. That means while tweaking one small feature (whether it’s a promotion, a CTA, or a slight alteration of the shopping cart), we can A/B test to accurately measure its impact on performance and conversion.



  • Leverage applicable reviews



Focus on collecting as many reviews as possible about the microsite’s featured product. Go through those reviews to find the ones coming from the specific audience looking to address on the microsite (for instance, a testimonial from a student on a student-targeted microsite). Then put all those relevant reviews at the top of the list. It will assist people to read the reviews most applicable to them directing them towards conversion.



  • Make special offers based on audience



Not everyone is excited by the same repeated special offers. Let’s suppose a small business is looking for a printer. It might be a big investment for them. So, they might finance it, and pay the amount in installments. But big businesses don’t need a payment plan. They might opt for a rental offer, with a maintenance package to keep it operating well under heavy use. Creating a generic path defeats the purpose of the site.


Some of the reasons why microsites could be a good fit for your clients:


Flexibility: They are generally more cost-efficient and quicker to ship than full websites.

Conversion: CTAs are limited and explicit in microsites. They leave no doubt as to the action the visitor will take.

Storytelling: Microsites are a great way for focusing on a unique user experience or conveying a complex story.

Experimentation: It’s faster and efficient to perform the A/B tests. From a branding perspective, microsites are a blank slate. We can try and test a totally different look and feel than the business’s core website.

SEO advantage: Give the site a unique and easy to remember URL. Focus on one or a few products, and use strategic keywords. The site can show up in higher ranking and/or more frequently in search results than the main website.

Trendy: Microsites are making a comeback, and it’s high time for businesses to understand what microsites can offer to their customers.



Microsites offer a great way to promote brands and events, independent from their parent brand/company. They offer great flexibility to design their web space according to individual brand characteristics, without any restrictions. Contact our web design services for creating an exceptional microsite that generate leads and get conversions fast.  

About Author


Ashutosh Chandra

Ashutosh is a blogger and technical writer at Oodles, who covers topics ranging from Branding, UI/UX design, Graphic design to other design and technology-related matters.

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