When you first start your company, you just want to get a website up and running and get the word out about what you do. However, it’s easy to make mistakes in the early minutes of your brand and then fall into the habit of retaining those errors over time. A business to business (B2B) model is a bit different than a business to consumer (B2C) model, and the pages should reflect the different needs of a varied audience.
A recent Accenture B2B marketing study found that 57% of buyers are already halfway or more through the process before they ever talk to a representative. That means your website and online presence, or current customers are doing about half the lead acquisition work for you. You can’t fully control word-of-mouth marketing, but you can control the impact your site has on potential customers.
You may be already doing a lot of things right with your site. Unfortunately, certain mistakes can drive customers away from your pages and into the arms of your competitors. Here are nine mistakes to check for to ensure that you’re getting the most leverage possible when someone lands on your page.
Mistake #1: Adding Moving Parts
Maybe you saw a large corporation’s website with animated graphics, and you thought it would look really cool on your site. The problem is that when they’re done by an amateur, motion graphics don’t always translate well across different devices and internet speeds. The animation may bog your site down and cause slow load speeds. Ask your regular customers to test your landing page and see if it loads quickly for them. If parts take too long to load, remove them.
Mistake #2: Not Securing Your Website
As technology advances, cyberattacks increase every year. There are more than 53,000 cybersecurity events around the globe each year. Failing to secure your B2B website puts your customers’ personal information at risk and may make you seem unreliable. At a minimum, install firewalls and protect the information you do collect. Seek out the advice of security professionals to ensure that you’re in compliance with new regulations such as the European Union’s GDPR.
Mistake #3: Failing to Focus on Navigation
Your navigation structure is what visitors use to acclimate themselves to your website. The moment someone lands on your page, they’ll start looking around for ways to orient themselves. A strong navigational hierarchy will reach across every page of your site and drive the user from one location to the next.
Advantage Outfitters does an excellent job presenting a navigational hierarchy that meets customer needs. If you hover over products, a mega menu drops down that shows vehicle types and the products available for each, such as wall liners and floor mats.
Mistake #4: Lack of Buyer Journey Focus
Mistake #5: Ignoring Updates
Let’s face it: Business owners lead hectic lives. Small businesses may have to fill multiple roles. Updating your B2B site might be one of the last things you have time for but failing to update regularly can leave your site looking neglected and dated. Even if you don’t have time to update your entire site, at least focus on a few key features, such as your header and content, so that site visitors see that you’re active and able to engage with you on current trends.
Snapcap offers lending for small business owners. Although their site remains similar month after month, they update customer stories regularly. For instance, they often add little notes from their happy customers where they’ve shared a review on Yelp or Trustpilot.
Mistake #6: Not Knowing Your UVP
What is your brand’s unique value proposition (UVP)? What do you offer that no other company in your industry does? For example, do you offer personalized service when your competitors are fully automated and impersonal? Perhaps your delivery times are the fastest in the industry. Whatever makes you stand out, make sure you define it and highlight it on your B2B website.
Mistake #7: Talking Corporate Speak
You might have the best of intentions about being transparent and sharing news about your company and what you do. However, if your content is filled with industry jargon that only you understand, it can be a big turnoff to potential clients. Instead, break things down into language anyone can understand. Write content geared toward your audience rather than your own understanding. Explain any terms you must use that aren’t common knowledge.
Filevine offers case management software for law offices. Rather than going into a bunch of technical jargon, they use common language to explain the benefits of using their software to lawyers. It’s very effective, as lawyers know the law but may not know IT.
Mistake #8: No Focus
Does your B2B website lack a singular focus? You must know what your goal is when someone lands on your page. Do you want to collect contact information and have the visit result in a purchase? Before you can convert site visitors, you must know what the conversion is. Once you have a goal in mind, everything on your page must point toward completing that goal. Anything else should be removed.
Mistake #9: Ignoring Mobile
By the year 2020, there will be approximately 4.78 billion mobile phone users. More and more people are using their smartphones to access the internet, and some don’t use desktop devices at all. Knowing how many people utilize mobile to browse the internet, you can see how vital it is to ensure your website is responsive to different screen sizes.
Create a Guide
One of the top things you can do to ensure your website and your online presence is consistent and on target is to create a style guide. Make sure everyone who works on your site is aware of where the logo should be placed, what fonts you embrace and even what the voice of your brand is. Include the focus of the site and the goals for conversions as well. Once you have a singular guide to how the site should be maintained, it will become much easier to stay focused and home in on the true purpose of your site.