Where are web portals heading?

3 Minutos de lectura

From websites to web portals, a brief history  

In the 90's, just for the digital presence, some companies had websites. It was like a way of saying "we are here too", a showcase in which they told us who they were and their logo appeared, and they rarely updated them. 

Then the digital economy began to grow, and it is because of all these companies that would be founded a decade later on the network (although they later went bankrupt with the crisis) that the process of digital transformation of many analog companies intensifies.

What are Web Portals?


It is no longer just the showcase: they have opened the warehouse. They invest in marketing, add blogs, feeds, show their products, set aside a space and create e-commerce and hire entire teams to manage the entire portal. So they are no longer mere sites, they are already constantly updated portals.

On Monday, February 21, we talked about the new features offered by portal managers. We talked about CMS Headless, DXP, Multisite Management and embedded portals and microfrontends. If you want to learn about the topic, I highly recommend you to watch the conversation we had. You can also read about The future of digital experiences. (available in Spanish).



What are web portals for?

In essence, web portals integrate access to various services so that we can find them in the same place. This prevents many companies that do not have sufficient resources to develop apps that few will download or use, streamlines inquiries and customer service and offer:

  1. The ability to separate the presentation layer from the content.

    This layer is the channel itself. For example, an organization's web portal.

    With this capability we can create content without having to intervene in its appearance, its interface or its aesthetic and graphical characteristics. This is what Headless CMSs allow, which are so called because they "remove the head" or header from the content, i.e. the presentation layer.

    With headless CMSs, content creators are dedicated exclusively to doing their thing in the best way, and digital and UI designers ensure that there is a consistent presentation aligned to the design system.

    In addition, changes can be made to the presentation without having to make changes to the content. For example, when rebranding.

  2. The ability to manage content as something independent that can be consumed by different digital properties.

    For example, no need to create and upload an article to the website that then has to be re-created and uploaded for the app. This avoids errors, modifications, contradictions between the app and the portal, among other problems that organizations have had for a long time. There is better information governance.

    Multiple channels can be managed.

  3. The ability to have journeys and campaigns modules.

    These are modules that can identify, create and authenticate users, as well as create and generate journeys for different transactions and processes.

    These modules allow customizations to be made for different digital property campaigns. As organizations and digital services grow, user journeys become more complex and necessary for business models.

    The advantage is that new digital experience platforms (DXP) give us the ability to grow these journeys, but also integrate them aesthetically and technically.

    We can start to think about transactional portals that no longer look so radically different from public portals.

  4. The ability to assign roles and functions in portal administration.

    Companies no longer have just a few domains, but can have thousands, according to their product lines, the countries they are in, the languages their customers speak, and so on.

    Think of the portal of a company like Sony. It is in more than 140 countries, has all kinds of products, and must manage both its marketing and advertising content as well as customer service content and much more. Sony, like many companies, needs Multisite Management. It has thousands of domains and subdomains.

    It is not enough with the traditional webmaster who did everything. It is necessary to create teams or work cells that are in charge of the different sites. And this is the capacity that the new managers offer us: to be able to administer and assign functions to these teams.

    For example, those dedicated to a product can be in charge of its content in all aspects and needs of the user or customer.

In short

ability to care for and maintain the channel (portal or showcase presentation layer); ability to manage content for different digital properties; ability to use journeys and campaigns modules to respond to the user; ability to assign roles and functions in the administration, creation and management of portals.

This is the future that organizational portals already have. Digital business models will no longer rely on the development of apps, as happened in recent years. And many portals are going to function like apps, and even replace them. I'm not saying that apps will disappear. They will also become more complex and offer new features.


But let's look at a local example

Cine Colombia left its app and today its portal works like the app. Why? I don't know the reasons, but it occurs to me that it was an app that users forgot or uninstalled when they didn't use it, while they always searched on the web.

After all, 80% of apps are uninstalled shortly after being downloaded.

The question for organizations is: How is their web portal today: is it still forgotten or is it being transformed and managed to be a high value-generating property for the business?

That's what we know how to do at Xperience. And it's the conversation we can bring to organizations.

Picture of Julián Trujillo

Julián Trujillo

Cuento con más de 20 años de experiencia en el diseño, implementación y operación de una gran variedad de servicios, canales y operaciones. He trabajado en Avon, Bancolombia, Allus, Peoplesoft. Y he sido profesor en varias universidades de Colombia, Ecuador y Panamá, tanto en posgrado, pregrados y extensión, con énfasis en temas de innovación, Service Design, Business Design, servicios y modelos digitales, operación de servicios y gestión de canales. Estudié pregrado y maestría en administración de negocios, así como una especialización en mercadeo y otra en intervención creativa. Hice estudios en antropología. Soy un pensador ambidiestro que articula los mundos racionales y sensibles.