Growing conversion rates is a typical goal for marketers, but many fall short of achieving it.
In a business to business marketing report, the Content Marketing Institute found 82 percent of B2B marketers said higher conversion rates was one of their most important tracked metrics.
However, just 22 percent of businesses feel their conversion rates are sufficient, according to Econsultancy. Businesses lacking confidence in their conversion rates should reevaluate their B2B website and overhaul the look of their site to raise the bar on their conversions and increase sales.
Why Is B2B Lead Generation So Difficult?
Long story short, it’s because there’s no perfect, fool-proof way of generating leads. Sure there’s a ton of best practices, but if anyone has come up with one genius idea that never fails, then they’re keeping it under lock and key.
Some of the greatest obstacles B2B marketers face are:
- It’s unclear where leads actually come from. Outside of email marketing, social media, and PPC, there’s a large percentage of leads being sourced from who knows where.
- The digital revolution has dramatically changed the market, from consumer behavior to the retirement of old marketing techniques.
- Many marketers struggle with the difference between generating leads and bringing in qualified prospects.
It wouldn’t be too far off to say that lead generation is hard simply because generating leads is a challenge in and of itself. There’s so little known about how to reel in a prize fish again and again, and what we do know is evolving all the time.
That’s why developing a B2B website with conversion in mind is so important. You’ll be able to integrate everything that’s been working so far into one place, and then adapt to new strategies as they’re discovered.
10 Tips for Creating a B2B Website That Converts
Even though lead gen can be tough, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prioritize it.
Conversion should be a top priority for every marketing team, so we’ve listed out some tips on how to do it successfully where most of your leads funnel in:
1. Research Your Audience.
To achieve the next step in the sales funnel and get closer toward conversion, marketers must know their audience, especially what are their pain points and how they make their purchasing choices.
Through market research by asking questions and gathering responses from people representing their ideal customer, businesses can make more informed decisions about how to approach their audience.
Questions about their demographics and industry/job titles can lead to answers to more difficult questions, like which unique sales propositions are likely to get them to buy.
Based on their demographics, pain points and other relevant information, businesses will better understand what it takes to close the sale through techniques and strategies like calls to action.
2. Optimize Your Landing Pages.
Landing pages are a crucial tool for a B2B website. Not only do they inform leads about your business and its products and services, but landing pages directly affect conversion rates.
MarketingSherpa data revealed 68 percent of B2B businesses use landing pages to eventually direct a new sales lead toward conversion. In addition, MarketingSherpa found 48 percent of marketers create a new landing page for every marketing campaign they have.
Elements of a successful landing page include:
Eye-Catching Page Titles
The page title should state what the page is about, such as what content offers you may have or the product or service it is describing. In addition to the meta title, the meta description of the page should also be appealing to anyone who finds your site through a search engine result page.
A Hierarchy of Subheadlines
Subheads help break up blocks of text, but they should also indicate the importance of each section through H1, H2, H3, etc. tags. Sections with H1 and H2 tags are the biggest text on the page and signal to search engines that these are the most significant sections.
Anchor Text and Links With Targeted Keywords
Keywords are no doubt an important part of landing pages, but even more so when used with links that point to other pages on your B2B website. Ensure that these internal links have anchor text that utilize your chosen keywords that describe your products and services or have other relevant phrases.
Images (With Alt Text)
Landing pages with images help draw visitors in and play a big role in conversions. However, when search engines crawl pages all over the internet for information, images are not really processed.
For search engines to “see” images, pages need alt text to let search engines know what pages are about. When creating alt text, include target keywords and make sure this text is descriptive to help visitors who may be sight-impaired and use screen readers understand the content of the page.
3. Use Visuals Strategically.
According to the 2016 Social Media Marketing Industry Report published by Social Media Examiner, 37 percent of marketers said visual marketing was the most important content for businesses.
Examples of visuals that aid in conversion include:
Feature Images and Thumbnails
Marketers also use calls to action within buttons to further increase conversion rates.
Mozilla tested out two versions of a button featuring different calls to action to download its Firefox browser. One said “Try Firefox 3” while the other said “Download Now - Free.” The button that said “Download Now - Free” had a higher conversion rate of 10.07 percent as opposed to 9.73 percent for the text “Try Firefox 3.”
Speaking of CTAs...
4. Utilize Calls to Action (CTAs).
For leads to convert, they must take meaningful action like putting an item in a shopping cart, signing up for a newsletter or downloading a content offer.
To push site visitors toward conversion, websites should use CTAs on important pages like landing pages, website elements like buttons, and more. These CTAs should point to the next step that leads should take.
A B2B website can use calls to action like:
- Sign Up
- Learn More
5. Experiment With A/B Testing.
Testing out different CTAs for download buttons can allow companies to choose the best version of their button that have higher conversion rates.
In the case of Mozilla Firefox, the company used A/B testing to test out two versions of a page element to collect quantitative data about visits, conversion rates, and more. In addition to the higher conversion rate, the “Download Now - Free” button also had a greater number of visitors.
When testing out different versions of a page, change one element or variable at a time, such as button text or color, to allow test subjects to focus on these components and prevent the wrong results.
6. Analyze Your Site Metrics.
How do you know your B2B website is successful at converting leads into customers without looking at the hard data?
Sign up for apps designed to collect data related to website traffic, conversion rates, and more, like Google Analytics, which is free for businesses to use. Look for metrics like click-through rates, the length of sessions on a page, or the number of visits to the most popular pages.
By analyzing site metrics, you will know which pages are the best at converting so you can concentrate your resources on updating these pages while killing others that do little for supporting your revenue growth.
7. Leverage Backlinks
Backlinks are hyperlinks sending traffic from external websites to yours, boosting your SEO value and your authority.
Why are they relevant? Well, when someone else creates a backlink, within context, to your site, that acts as a vote toward your expertise and relevance in reference to a specific topic.
Search engines pay attention to these actions and see it as a reason to raise your domain authority, pushing you higher in their rankings. And what's more, word of mouth takes the form of more than just testimonials and reviews. When another person of authority hypes you or your business up, leads are going to take notice.
If you can get another business to send you traffic to your B2B website, that's more qualified leads entering your sales cycle.
8. Write Valuable Content.
Blogging and social media posts are excellent ways of building your online presence, but you won't actually convert any leads to customers if the content isn't serving them in some way.
By writing educational content, you're showing your audience that you truly believe in providing value for them. This generates trust and credibility, two elements that keep plenty of businesses afloat.
And it doesn't have to just be blogs or articles. There's a lot of room for experimentation with different formats when it comes to content marketing:
- Pillar pages
The list could go on and on. It's important that you're consistent in your campaigns, though, and that you do proper research on how to best reach your target audience.
What type of information are they looking for? How do they like to receive it? Where are they currently going to get content?
9. Make Sure You're Mobile Friendly.
A common, and yet fatal, mistake a lot of businesses make is forgetting to consider how their B2B website appears on mobile devices. Everything from the layout to the font sizes can get skewed if the site isn't properly designed for mobile use.
And mobile engagement is important. There's a ton of research backing the fact that mobile purchasing isn't novel anymore.
Your audience prefers converting on their smartphones and tablets now, and if you're not giving them that opportunity, they'll look somewhere else.
When optimizing your site for mobile, pay attention to font sizing, allowing for zoom, building an accessible menu or navigation links, and just flat out having the site be responsive.
10. Design Non-Intrusive Pop-Ups.
Pop-ups aren't dead, that much we know. But the stigma surrounding them is very much still alive as well. In order to avoid being considered "annoying," look into practicing non-intrusive methods.
Nowadays, pop-ups don't literally have to pop up on screen, obscuring a visitor's view of your website. That's just a tedious user experience.
Pop-ups can live pretty much anywhere on a page. Maybe it's got some movement in the sidebar. Or perhaps a small CTA drops from the top of the page and exists like a header.
You don't have to do away with them entirely because they do actually help with converting leads, but being mindful about them makes all the difference.
The best advice anyone can give when it comes to optimizing your B2B website is to respect the user experience. If you give your leads a good time, provide them value, and resist being pushy, they'll trust you.
That trust can easily lead to a sale.