B2B Website Design Guide
What is a B2B Website?
Business to business (B2B) is the exchange of products, services, and information between businesses. A B2B website offers a platform for businesses to offer their products to other businesses, distinguished predominantly by who they are targeting.
What makes an effective B2B website?
An effective website generates enough qualified leads for your business regularly.
To achieve this your website needs to have adequate traffic. Potential customers need to be able to find the website organically as well as through other channels.
A B2B website also needs to engage visitors with a clear customer journey and successful user experience.
Finally, it needs to convert leads. Your B2B website design needs to offer up all the information your prospect may be searching for and give them enough reason to take action and become a customer.
B2B Website Design Vs B2C Website Design
The lead funnel and lifecycle of a B2B purchase are usually longer and more logically driven. You will find that psychologically, B2C purchases are made based more on emotion.
B2B purchases require more persuasion because the decision affects more than just the buyer but the company or team too. B2B pricing structures can vary depending on service provided, size of business, or hours required which is why B2B buyers aren’t as impulsive as B2C buyers are.
When it comes to website design it is important to match your target audience’s needs so B2B purchasers who are known to have more risk aversion and fear when it comes to taking action they may need more information than a B2C website would.
Creating a B2B website design that solves prospective customer’s problems on-page and offers streamlined navigation will positively add to conversion rates overall.
B2B Website Design Best Practices
Google Analytics and Search Console are essential in creating a data-driven B2B website design optimised for conversions. If you are redesigning your B2B website then the historical data will support your new website design.
Use Google Analytics to identify which pages had the highest and lowest traffic so that you can highlight which pages to keep in your foundational sitemap.
Search Console will put the spotlight on any technical problems that could be altering your Google Analytics data analysis. Common issues include inaccurate sitemaps, crawl errors or manual spam actions. Resolving these problems plays a big part in creating a B2B website that is effective.
When you are conducting your research, your competitors are a critical part of the process. This will give you insight into what works well and will help you remain clear on what sets you apart. Keyword research against competitors offers potential opportunities to further develop your own keyword strategy.
The digital sphere is constantly changing which is why having knowledge of trends and website performance will have an impact on your B2B website design. Understanding current thought leadership and trends will give you the tools to elevate your website.
Knowing who you are as a brand is the ideal starting point, this will fuel your value proposition which is a critical part of your B2B website design.
A successful website connects with your audience as soon as they land on it and builds trust throughout their experience. Your value proposition should be clear about who you are, what you do, and how your service can improve your customer’s lives.
Once you have a value proposition that is unique, desirable, succinct, memorable, and specific, this will integrate into your keyword strategy, navigation, website copy, and overall website design.
Another critical element is your keyword strategy. Having a keyword strategy in place before you plan out your website will ensure that your prospects find you in all stages of their purchasing journey.
Using your target keywords as a platform to build upon will ensure that your website copy, blogging, and social media all focus on these target terms and increase your ranking on search engines.
Keyword research needs to be completed comprehensively to fully benefit your B2B website design, this involves more than identifying keywords your website currently ranks for. You need to research new keywords by listening to your audience, investigating your competitors, and understanding current trends in your industry to create a truly robust keyword strategy.
Start with your sitemap, this dictates which pages need to be created and where they will be housed on your website. Your sitemap will be the visualisation of your research and strategy thus far.
Keep it simple but informative. You want to provide expertise without being offering content that is not valuable. Remember your foundation and create content for each stage of the customer journey.
Don’t neglect the standard website requirements such as terms and conditions. Plan out enough landing pages to be clear and don’t forget blog pages.
Navigation is a pet peeve for so many users, it’s what pushes people off your website and it’s what helps them have a great experience. Users don’t have time to figure out what your brand’s names are for pages – this is a space for clarity so keep it accessible.
Agile website development calls for the prioritisation of pages and features. This approach will help you launch your website based on the core pages first giving you scope to flesh it out over time. This also allows time to build a website that is based on the data you discover with your first launch.
Copywriting starts before you write a single word which is why wireframes are so important for an effective website. The first phase of your website should be fully prepped with wireframes and copy before you start designing your pages.
Wireframes are an essential tool when planning layout and copy. Easy to adapt and quick to change based on your research.
Your homepage should tell your visitors everything they need to know about you whilst being engaging enough to keep them on your website regardless of where they are in their buying process. Your value proposition has a responsibility here because it needs to speak to everyone who visits your website.
Another way to validate your homepage is with social proof. Showcasing why your business is worth learning about through peer recommendation is a tool that will set you apart from your competition.
Calls to action to push visitors forward in their journey with you are so necessary on your homepage. Whether it’s to receive gated content, regularly email communication or purely to access another resource on your website, pushing your prospects along in their journey is your homepage’s greatest goal.
B2B website design isn’t a signed, sealed, and delivered situation. Once you are up and running you have a responsibility to continuously improve your offerings.
This spreads beyond updating your copy, creating more valuable content, and initiating conversations. Conversion optimisation is ongoing and measurable. Your B2B website design will have multiple conversion points but if users aren’t taking action then they need to be reinvented.
Conversion points need to be clear on expectations and delivery. ‘Book a demo’ is clear and efficient. Much more direct than a ‘contact us’ at the end of a page.
Search engine optimisation has a leading role because this places you in the best position to attract organic traffic.
Here is how you optimise for organic traffic:
- Feature keywords in your meta titles
- Write relevant meta descriptions that give users enough information to want to click
- Optimise headings to include targeted keywords
- Include keywords in the copy
- Link to other pages
- Add image tags that feature keywords
In conclusion, remember your target buyers, how knowledgeable are they? What are their biggest problems? How are they going to find you? And what will their experience be on your B2B website?
B2B website design can make or break your brand especially if you trade purely in digital space so invest in your research and create a website that is informative, valuable, and keeps your buyers making logical decisions to purchase your product or service.