The Essentials of a Converting B2B Website Design
Judging by our experience from working with clients from various industries, we can confidently state that website design is one of the key elements that help attract and retain new customers. The product might be incredibly efficient or beneficial for the client but it’s the design that catches the attention and creates the first impression of the brand.
The biggest mistake that B2B entrepreneurs make is requesting a bland and characterless design in an attempt to make the website look more professional and persuading. But in reality, it’s the brand’s personality and seamless website appearance that make the customers want to explore the products and eventually complete a conversion.
Design in accordance with the user journey
The primary thing to keep in mind when working on the B2B website design is that you design for people. Thus, your first step would be to create a user persona and then outline the user journey in accordance with this persona.
By a user persona, we mean a fictional portrait of an ideal client that would most probably visit your website. It is also possible to have several user personas. In this case, you will need to think about the user journey for each of them.
One of the pitfalls that many entrepreneurs and designers fall for is the inability to differentiate between the lead generation and lead conversion. Lead generation is the process of acquiring new customers who have not yet heard of a brand while lead conversion is the process of actually converting the existing leads into the brand’s clients.
By understanding this difference, you will be able to map out your website more efficiently and achieve the set business goals instead of trying to do everything at once.
In a survey held by HubSpot, 76% of the people said that ease of navigation was the most important factor for them in website design. Thus, you need to facilitate and optimize your navigation in order for the users to quickly find what they need.
Intuitive website design includes:
A rational number of categories or sectors (so the user does not get confused),
The standard placing of common elements (i.e. a shopping cart in the upper right corner),
Correspondence of the design to the user flow,
Rational and relevant use of popups (so the user is not distracted).
B2B websites, in general, tend to be more professional-looking than B2C ones. Thus, it is recommended to keep it simple, uncluttered and self-explanatory so the user immediately understands your value proposition and quickly finds the needed information.
Add primary and secondary offers<
The average visitor of a B2B website is not ready to buy right away due to the nature and the cost of a product offered. Thus, it is your goal to catch the user’s attention and initiate the interaction so the user gets involved with the product. For that, you can use primary and secondary offers.
A primary offer is usually a call-to-action that is aimed at making the user interact with you. This offer is almost impossible to resist as it proposes high value at a low (or zero) risk. An example would be a free audit of a website.
The secondary offer also provides great value to a user but in exchange for their contact information, like a phone number or an email address. You will be able to use this information to contact the person in the future. An example of a secondary offer would be a useful PDF, whitepaper, or similar type of information.
Creat visible and engaging CTAs
CTAs make the important information on your website stand out so you need to consider certain rules when designing the CTA buttons:
Placement: the higher the better. Do not “hide” the CTAs but also strike a balance and place them in accordance with the user’s viewpoint.
Color: use a bright color that would contrast with the page’s main color so the CTA is visible. Note: use ghost buttons (aka buttons with transparent background) carefully. While some designers recommend avoiding them, others use these buttons as CTAs so test them and see what works best for your specific website.
Content: instead of using cliches (i.e. “Buy now!”), try personalizing the CTA message so it relates to the offered product.
Make the contact information visible and clear
Many B2B websites do not disclose the product pricing on the website but instead, offer the users to contact a sales representative to get more information. While it sounds reasonable, many entrepreneurs make a crucial mistake by overlooking the “Contact” section of the website and leaving the user confused and annoyed.
For the B2B segment, the contact page of a website is one of the most important. This page is a logical endpoint of a user journey and it converts the site users into leads. Here are a few things to watch for when optimizing the contact page:
Make it easy to find: a user should not roam the website in an attempt to find your phone or company address.
Offer a few contact options: add an email, a phone, messengers, and a contact form.
Add your social media buttons like LinkedIn, Instagram, or Facebook.
As well, you can place several Contact Us buttons across the website in case the user reads the product description and decides to get more information right away.
Ensure the content is top-quality
When it comes to website design, many people tend to forget that content is an integral part of it. As a result, they do not really pay attention to content quality which results in a stellar design combined with a floppy copy.
As Nigel Green said, your best sales rep ought to be your website”. And one of the key traits of a professional salesperson is the ability to persuade to buy and to outline all the values of a product in an engaging and informative manner. Thus, it is your primary objective to fill in your B2B website with relevant, informative, and valuable content.
The features of high-quality content include:
Lively style of writing: remember that professional tone does not equal dry,
Proven facts: do not use number one product descriptions unless you can prove them,
SEO-friendliness: it is obligatory to use relevant keywords in order for your website to be visible in search engines,
Unlocking of the key product features: their description should provide a solution to the user problem.
Optimize the website performance
B2B clients value their time. They come to a website for a specific purpose and expect to promptly find the needed information. So if your website takes more than 5 seconds to load, does not fully load the images, or gives an error to a user’s request, you might be in trouble.
Optimization of website performance is the number one thing to pay attention to. Some common pitfalls that many websites share are:
Too heavy images
Lack of caching
Unnecessary plugins, extensions, or even pieces of code,
Poor hosting provider.
If your analytics shows a high bounce rate or a dropdown in the number of visitors, it would be a good idea to run a performance audit and fix the problem areas as soon as possible so they stop hurting the conversions.
The design of a B2B website is a perfect opportunity to visualize the core strengths and values of a brand and present it to potential customers in an engaging and appealing manner. However, the design process should be well-structured and thought out so one needs to invest a certain amount of time and effort into it.
Alex ShatnyView all articles by this author.