This paper develops semiotic models of the way website communications have appropriated and changed conventional forms of marketing messages. In this sense it offers semiotic analysis as a new (not yet mainstream) technique for assessing web performance, along with other forms of communications. However, the models will also provide a platform for finetuning the qualitative and quantitative techniques that already exist for researching advertising, promotions, retail merchandising etc with consumers. Secondly, a semiotic approach is used to understand what it is that sets web communications from all others: a qualitatively different experience is set up for the browser from the reader or the viewer, constructing an entirely new kind of consumer. This points the direction in developing new techniques to research this webness.