All Articles What You Need To Build A Business To Business (B2B) Website By Joshua Burk B2B Website: An Overview You have a product that’s an industry game-changer. That’s great, but does your website provide the same level of usefulness and user experience? It should! There’s absolutely no reason that a B2B website shouldn’t have the same design elements that make consumer websites engaging. However, remember that you ultimately sell your products to people, not businesses. That being the case, it makes sense that your website should be visually appealing with a real focus on great UX. Things to Consider in Business to Business Website Design Many B2B sites do a decent job of communicating about the products or services and the company that sells them. This information is undoubtedly a vital part of the overall picture. But, unfortunately, it doesn’t do enough to nudge potential customers through the sales funnel. That means these sites are missing something important in their design. If a business customer surfs into your website looking for a solution to a problem, they want to find their answer quickly. The more you require them to scroll or click, the more frustrated they become. What All B2B Sites Need Every website is different because every business has varying needs. Still, certain design elements that every B2B site needs to make it functional and engaging. Here are those ingredients: Aesthetically pleasing design Elements of good UX Accessible answers to customer questions A quick path to what the user wants Device adaptability Fast page load time If you incorporate these items in your website design, your business will be off to a great start. Steps to Take Before Designing Your Company B2B Website It’s tempting to jump directly into the website design process. After all, that is the most exciting part, and you are understandably eager to get your new or revised company site up and running. Unfortunately, getting started without doing the preliminary work will lead to lackluster results. Worse, you’ll need to come back and fix your website design. Before you work on design, you have to have an understanding of: Who the end user is What they are trying to accomplish How the current site is working for them and how it is not Which functions you want to add How buyers progress through the sales journey Your goals in making the B2B design change Here are the steps to take to gather the information you need. 1. Gather Information from Customers and Customer-Facing Staff B2B website design often fails because it is based on assumptions. The truth is that expected user behavior and actual user behavior are often very different. Because of this, the first step in creating a B2B website is to gather accurate information. 2. Talk with Customers About Your Website If you can survey your customers, certainly do so. They are your best source of information. For example, they can tell you what was helpful in their user experience and what was frustrating. They can also communicate features that would have made their buying process easier and anything that helped motivate them to click over to the order page. 3. Communicate with Marketing and Other Business Departments Next is communicating with customer-facing staff. These are sales personnel, support staff, and others who work directly with customers. They are the ones who represent your company. They deal directly with customer frustrations and positive experiences. If a page on your website is beneficial or offers a terrible user experience, they are going to know. 4. Use Data Analytics on Your B2B Website Finally, analytics data is an excellent source of usage information for your business-to-business websites. This information can help you understand how traffic flows through your site, which page gets the most attention, the source of traffic, etc. Ideally, your marketing team will be working with this already. However, you can quickly implement an analytics tool to monitor your website. 5. Build a Customer Persona & Map the Buyer Journey Through Your Website The next step is to synthesize all of this information for two purposes. First, you have to build the persona of your target business user based on their interests, what they need, and what motivates them to buy your products. Essentially, it describes your target customer, demographics, needs, values, motivations, and the problem they are solving. You must also map out the buyer’s journey. Keep in mind that this shouldn’t simply be a recitation of how they use your current company website. It should also factor in the customer’s thought process as they realize they need to make a purchase that may not even happen online. 6. B2B Journey Mapping One buyer’s journey could be as simple as: Identifies business-related problems.→ Determines the relevant product or service → searches and finds your product page → makes a purchase. Other paths might be a bit more complex, including: Contacting your customer support via phone after visiting your website initially. Requesting a product trial or demo Navigating from your website to your YouTube channel to watch an instructional video The point isn’t to define every step a customer can potentially take but to understand the different actions when using your site. 7. Define Calls to Action Your ultimate goal on every landing page is to motivate the user to take some action. Therefore, every page should have a purpose. You have to identify what that is and design that page to meet the customer’s needs at that moment. Every page should have the right content and a clear call to action. What is a call to action? This marketing term simply refers to the desired action to take on a particular B2B website. That instruction might be: Click here to subscribe! Download your free trial today Set an appointment with our top sales rep Swipe to learn about our special offer A call to action is often located at the bottom of a company web page as it represents the final step for the user to take after they’ve read or watched the content there. What to Expect During the B2B Website Design Process Now that you’ve gathered this information and understand how customers experience your site, it’s time to design. The good news is that all the discoveries made up to this point will help us create a website that truly works for your business. Of course, we can also take care of the requirements gathering mentioned above as well. Now, it is time to design the screens and develop the code to support your B2B website with the desired functionality. Don’t worry; you will be heavily involved in the design. Customer feedback is critical during this process. During this process, we’ll ask different departments of your staff to collaborate with us, including marketing and branding team members. Branding is a critical factor in designing a company website. Your marketing team is best able to provide us with honest feedback as to whether we are successfully staying on brand. Testing Business-to-Business Websites B2B website testing is a detailed and exacting process. It requires verifying that every page works as intended, that your site we’ll stay up even under heavy use, and that we have considered all possible user actions. B2B Website Launch and Support Once testing is completed, and stakeholders like the marketing department have signed off, it’s time to go live! You’ll be replacing the old B2B website that your customers are used to with one that affords a better user experience. Thanks to the planning, diligence, and sound design practices used to create every B2B page, everything should go smoothly. However, you should still expect your customers to have questions. It’s a good idea for your company to be prepared for this. How Digital Marketing Works with B2B Sites A B2B website design or redesign has a rippling impact. The most important will be that it provides a better experience for users, leading to more conversions. Still, other business areas will be affected by the change. For example, if your redesign involves highlighting new products and services, that might lead to increased demand, for which your operations team will have to prepare. One of the critical impacts of redesigning business-to-business websites relates to digital marketing for your company. These two things go hand in hand, as redesigning your company web page can lead to: Improved SEO Increased traffic to social media pages from your site More organic traffic to your company website Earned backlinks Conversion optimization Implements marketing analytics for your company In light of these developments, you can see why marketing teams are strongly involved in the design process. It’s also why we often pair our digital marketing services with our web design offerings. Final Thoughts: B2B and Digital Marketing It takes a lot of effort and understanding to make a new web page design work. Fortunately, you don’t have to take this on alone. Contact us to get help with perfecting your B2B website today!