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Portal and Intranet Basics

Here's an overview of intranets, enterprise portals and public portals:


  • Web page consisting of links to information for use by employees
  • Also known as corporate intranet, firm intranet
  • Key characteristics: Available only to staff of organization. Brings together internal links and data in addition to external links; general static Web pages with no individual customization; informational in nature; return on investment (ROI) from increased productivity

Enterprise Portal

  • Browser-based access to internal software applications and information for use by employees
  • Also known as corporate portal, corporate information portal, enterprise information portal, intranet portal, enterprise application portal
  • Key characteristics: Available to company staff and possibly designated clients and suppliers; aggregates company-specific (proprietary) data in addition to Web data; provides individual customization and company-specific categorization and search; ROI from increased productivity.

Public Portal

  • Browser-based gateway to a wide array of publicly available resources
  • Also known as portal, vertical portal (or vortal), affinity portal
  • Key characteristics: Available to general public; aggregates broad range of publicly available data; provides individual customization and/or generalized categorization and/or search capabilities; ROI from advertising sales
  • Examples: FindLaw, Yahoo



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