Top 3 Things to Consider When Planning Multiple Websites


Building a website can be an easy task you tackle in a weekend or it can be a months-long project managed by certified professionals and backed by a six-figure budget. Like most things in life, everything depends on what your goals are and what you need to accomplish.

What’s almost guaranteed to be complex, however, is building not one website but a series of interconnected websites.

Don’t think you’ll ever need multi-site management from your Content Management System? Most nonprofits aspire to grow to a point where multiple websites are required and many start out needing multi-site management but don't realize they do.

Any non-profit with multiple services, branches, or locations need a CMS capable of multi-site management. Nonprofits that require multi-site networks might include:

  • Outdoor/adventure camps
  • Religious institutions
  • Chambers of commerce
  • Parks and Recreational institutions

If you need to build a multi-site network, be sure to keep the following tips in mind.

Colors and Branding

Multi-site networks are separate but should be related. That means you’ll need to choose colors, fonts, and branding that will translate well to all of your web properties. While an eye-catching red or a splash of orange might jazz up your events page, it might clash with a more serious page.

Content Planning

Organizations with multi-site management needs typically have content they want to share across more than one of their web properties. Think in advance about how your organization will handle this. Taking the same piece of content and posting it in multiple Content Management Systems by using multiple logins and changing the layout and features to fit each system is a huge headache. Determine how often you’ll need to share the same content in different sites that you are managing and know how your CMS can handle this.

Pick the Right Multi-Site CMS

Not every Content Management Systems allows you to run multiple websites effectively. In fact, most make it downright difficult. The right CMS for multi-site networks allows you to:
  • Share content and settings across all of your sites with a single click
  • Launch new sites easily
  • Limit hosting expenses by not overcharging for hosting fees
  • Keep branding throughout the site while enabling each branch or division to have its own identity

Creating and managing multiple websites doesn’t have to make you crazy. With the right planning, and the right CMS, launching a series of websites will be a just as easy as launching one.