Traditional ethnography focuses on identifiable cultural groupings of individuals and, through a process of observation and participant interviews (among other techniques), the researcher explores the effects of the social dynamic with regard to a topic of interest. Webethnography (also known as netnography, webnography, online ethnography and virtual ethnography) involves the application of ethnographic research methods to specific online communities through the observation and analysis of online dialogue and other online artefacts. This paper contends that webethnography is appropriate only where almost all interactions between group members occur online through the community site – that is, the community is a virtual community in the truest sense. Where communities conduct some or most of their interaction offline, webethnography is less appropriate as a stand-alone research method. Using a case study of project manager online communities on the social networking site www.LinkedIn.com, we argue that a triangulation with offline data sources helps to ensure data validity and generalisation to the group of interest. This paper presents a typology that proposes three general approaches to research design, to account for the differing scope of online cultural groups. The implications of this typology include the addition of additional precautions in the design of ethnographic studies.