What is your website
Company website: Tips for your successful B2B website
The company website is, so to speak, the heart of your online marketing. We have collected the most important tips on the subject and explain why the corporate website is so important and what a good B2B website should look like. Using examples, measures and evaluation criteria, you will find out where the optimization potential of your own company website could be.
What makes a good website and why is it so important?
In the past, the websites of B2B companies mostly only served as a "digital business card". There was shown what the company does, some products were shown and advertised and press releases were published on the corporate website. Today that is no longer enough for a good company website.
Rather, you must now fully satisfy your most important critics with the company website - your (potential) customers and users of the website.
When is a company website good?
Of course, the consideration of a good company website and a bad company website is always very individual. Especially with B2B websites, other factors, key figures and comparative values are important than, for example, with a large online shop for fashion. But basically you can use the following metrics if you want to look at the performance of your website:
The traffic: The traffic describes how many users come to your company page over time. You can evaluate this traffic in web analysis tools such as Google Analytics. If a web analysis tool is properly connected, you will also find out from which sources your website visitors come. That can be B. be the following:
- search engines
- Direct access to the URL
- Social media
- Links on other websites
Traffic is to be assessed very individually and depends on the topic and the performance of your company. It is probably clear that Zalando is recording dramatically more traffic overall than a connector manufacturer. The reason: B2B websites often have the problem that you serve a very specific and small target group and that the topics and products are only of interest to a fraction of the users on the Internet.
Most people, on the other hand, need shoes and clothing. You should therefore not compare yourself with large online shops, but always with your competition or companies from a similar environment that address the same target group.
Nevertheless, the traffic is an important indicator: Because it shows you whether you are reaching users - and thus potential customers - with your company website and where they will come across your company website. For example, if you only have around 40 users a month on your company's homepage, this is usually too few and you should think about measures to improve it: B2B website relaunch.
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Search engine positioning / search engine ranking: Search engine optimization (SEO) is an extremely important source of traffic. If you combine good content on your website that interests and satisfies your users and an optimal technical structure and functions, search engines like Google and Bing will rank the pages of your company website and thus lead visitors to your B2B website with the right search queries.
In various SEO tools you can read your "Visibility Index", the number of your relevant rankings and your general positioning. Create comparative values and compare the results of your company website with those of your most important competitors (3 - 4 competing domains should be sufficient for a benchmark).
If your competition is performing a lot better or as well as you on the search engines, then it's time to get your Search engine optimization to improve. This affects your entire company website, because Google has high standards in terms of technology, content and security for websites that are placed on the search results pages (SERPs). If your page does not meet these requirements, you will not be able to improve your search engine positioning in the long term. You can find out how B2B websites have to be set up as well as the basics and tips about SEO in our White paper on B2B search engine optimization.
Conversion rate: Most B2B websites are designed to generate leads for sales. The potential sales contacts should be attracted to the website by valuable content and, in the best case, you should register there for further content, such as white papers, webinars or case studies. This registration, the registration for the newsletter, as well as the filling out of a contact form, represent the conversion on your B2B website.
If one Conversion rate good or bad depends on several factors. Among other things, the goal that you define is important: In online shops, the purchase is usually defined as a conversion - this is the rate - i.e. what percentage of website visitors actually buy something, according to Ryte at an average of 1%. But there are also areas in e-commerce where conversion rates of 10% are common.
In B2B, registration, signing up for the newsletter or filling out a contact form is usually rated as a conversion. If this rate is very bad, i.e. below 0.5% by the thumb of a thumb, (only 5 out of 1000 website visitors convert) this can have various reasons: For example, website users from the wrong target group who are not interested in further content such as Interested in product information.
But it could also be due to your content itself if it does not meet the requirements of the website visitors. Or the user guide and the User experience (User experience) on your company website are not good and the visitors are not encouraged to convert.
User / customer feedback: Ultimately, your customers decide whether your company website is good. This means that you should actively seek customer and user feedback. For example via a survey but also via your sales colleagues.
Ask whether your online presence answers the questions of the (potential) customers and how they can find their way around it. Does the content that you provide on the homepage meet the expectations of your customers or do they want completely different formats, such as video content or information graphics?
In addition, from the user data of your web analysis tool (e.g. Google Analytics) you can also find out a lot about how satisfied your website visitors are with the company homepage and how well they navigate it.
For example, look at the bounce rate (the bounce rate indicates what percentage of visitors land on your company website and then immediately jump off again) and also the length of stay - this indicates how long the users visit your website and how long they are consume content there.
If these two key figures are not good, it may be due to your content on the one hand, but also to a kind of "topic failure" on the other. Perhaps the visitors to your company website expected something completely different from your online presence. Or maybe you are reaching the wrong target group. In addition, technical difficulties can lead to jumps or users cannot find their way around your website because the structure is confusing.
The goals of a B2B website
As a rule, a company website is not only used to collect content, but also has to meet a number of objectives that are subordinate to marketing, sales and employer branding, among others. The most important goals that websites should meet in B2B are:
Lead generation: The generation of sales-relevant contacts is one of the main tasks of B2B marketing. The company website is the ideal platform for this. Because high-quality content, which can be bundled there and lies behind registration barriers, can be used to generate leads. The same applies to newsletter registrations and contact forms - your own website offers a multitude of lead generation options.
Content Hub: Furthermore, your B2B website is practically the home of your content. There you collect blog posts, white papers, case studies, videos, images and all other formats that you create as part of content marketing. Because some parts of your content must be freely available on your corporate website in order to rank on search engines for the right search queries. In addition, this content will convince your (potential) customers of your products and services. For example, if you do social media marketing, ideally you will lead users of social networks to your company website, where they will find the relevant content. The same goes for email marketing.
Range: The company homepage is also used for visibility and reach in the network. Because by Search engine optimizationIf you have made your website SEO-ready - numerous users from your target group will land on the company website in order to find the answers to your questions there. This will make you known to your potential buyers. In addition, linking to social media, in the trade press and other websites is important in order to draw more relevant users' attention to your offers - and this is best done with your own company website, because this is the center of all your online marketing.
Your company website is the center of your online marketing
Brand awareness: The brand - or brand - of a company is extremely important for its marketing and sales activities. Because even in B2B, purchasing decisions are to a certain extent driven by emotions. This means that if a buyer can identify with your brand and its values, this can definitely have a positive influence on their purchase decision. On the company website, you give your brand a platform for reach and bring it and its values to life. Your users will experience that too.
Support: Especially in IT or software companies, their own website also serves as a contact point for customers who need support or want to take advantage of support. It can turn out to be worthwhile to place the "support portal" on the corporate website, because this way you regularly attract your existing customers to the company website and possibly create up-selling potential through good content.
Recruiting: Of course, your career portal should also be integrated on your company website. You publish your job advertisements there. However, information about work, training and studies in your company should also be described in detail there. It can have positive effects on that Employer branding if you let employees and their experiences have their say on the career page of your company website. Ideally, you can apply directly from the website - this will make it even easier for your potential employees.
Customer satisfaction: Your website should satisfy your customers (Customer Centricty). There, for example, initial questions can be answered directly without your buyers having to contact you. Furthermore, you can share helpful content on a B2B website that provides your customers with information and acts as a guide and guide in use with your products. A corporate website or blog is also ideal for publishing reference reports and customer stories that other people in your target audience can use to identify themselves.
7 tips for a successful company website
Many B2B companies have acceptable websites, but these often do not quite meet the requirements of users and search engines. Many marketers also ask themselves the question "how do I build a good company website"? Especially if your company already has a corporate website - which is likely to be the case with most companies - the question remains whether the previous website is good enough. Sometimes company websites are so out of date - both in terms of design and technology and content - that only one Website relaunch Can help. But a few tips for the company website can already help to significantly improve its performance.
1. Know your target audience and meet their needs
As always in marketing, this is the first step before any action. Because your (potential) customers decide whether your B2B website is good or not. Be sure to ask your current users as well as your existing customers and also consult the data from your web analysis systems. If they don't like your content, your design and the technical functionality of your website, you have to adapt these areas according to the wishes of your target group. Hence, you need to know your target audience. Build your best Buyer personas Of your typical customers. You can then use these to strategically create, re-sort and structure the structure and content of your corporate website. To do this, focus on the following points:
- What (technical) questions do your customers ask and how can you answer them on your website?
- Which terminology does your target group use, how do you google and which other sources of information (e.g. specialist media) are used by this group?
- Which problems of your target group can your product / service solve and how can you present them - centered on the customer's problem?
- How technically savvy are your desired customers? Which functions do you want to use? For example, think of registrations for lead generation, product searches, online shops, interactive content, comments, etc. This is how you determine which functions you need on your website. You are also welcome to take a look at the homepages of your direct competitors.
- Which content and which content formats do your users prefer? Would you prefer to watch videos or download white papers or can a newsletter or a regular podcast impress your target group?
2. Optimize the user interface and user experience
The usability of a website is also essential today. Topics such as user experience, user guidance and user expectations must be bundled and implemented in the best possible way. How well do the visitors of your website find their way around? Do your visitors click on so-called call-to-actions (CTAs or calls to action)? Can your potential customers find what they are looking for on your website?
The user interface is the graphically displayed user interface of your website with which the users can interact - as simply as possible. For example, a click on a CTA button opens a registration form for the newsletter. A technical process is running in the background; the user cannot see anything in the foreground. The only important thing for him is that he can use the functions of your company website as easily and intuitively as possible - always according to the motto: Don't do any extra work for your website users.
One topic that is closely related to this is the user experience. How easily does your website work, what entertainment and information value does it offer visitors and how does the whole look? The content and design of your website contribute to this user experience on the one hand, but also its technology, functions and intuitive usability in the front end (user interface) on the other.
These points are particularly important for B2B websites. Because because of B2C websites, such as online shops or media, users now have high demands on user experience and user interface. These expectations also apply to B2B websites. So make sure that all the functions of your website are clear, understandable, intuitive and recognizable and, most importantly, that they work properly.
Your website visitors expect just as good a performance from B2B websites as they do from online shops or other B2C websites!
3. Target group-specific content
Your content is the core of your website. Even if the design is so beautiful, it will not do you any good if the content is not adapted to the needs of your target group. In addition, there should be a relevant, exciting content mix on your company website. Find out how your website users like to get information and then create the appropriate content formats, such as:
- A corporate blog
- Product / service pages
- Information graphics
With this content, which must be easy to find and relevant for your users, you can then rank on search engines and thus attract more traffic to your website from your courted customer group.
4. Technical standards: loading time, mobile optimization and Co.
As with the topic of user experience and user interface, website users today have high expectations. Especially when surfing on the go, the user does not want to wait four or five seconds for the desired page to load.Furthermore, all functions of the desktop version must also function properly in the mobile version of the corporate website.
For example, forms, buttons, navigation, images and videos, etc. Always make sure that the mobile version of your company website looks, loads and is usable. This point is immensely important for search engine optimization, among other things. If the technical systems of your website do not allow responsiveness, fast loading times, the mobile view or even secure encryption, you definitely have to think about a website relaunch.
5. Attractive, unique website design
The first impression is incredibly important. What can users expect when they visit you online? An old-fashioned “box design”, distorted optics and images that take a few seconds to load? A desert of text? Avoid doing this on your B2B website. Because even on the websites of industrial, pharmaceutical or logistics companies, visitors expect an appealing image that reflects both the competence of your company and the interests of the target group.
In addition, your corporate brand should stand out clearly in the design, so not only should your logo be prominently placed, but the color design of your website should also be based on your corporate design (CD). This also applies to fonts and sizes, structure and structure, as well as images and other design elements.
Receive your user online just as you would in person: competent, impressive and incomparable.
6. Order and structure of the company website
The saying: "Order is half the battle" also applies to the topic of company websites. Many B2B websites grow historically with the company and the stakeholders. Everyone wants their topics to be published on the corporate website. Especially companies that have a wide range of services run the risk of overloading the company website - so much that no visitor is familiar with it and is overwhelmed by the many pages and the masses of content.
It is better to cluster the topics of your website at the beginning: which products need to be placed and which suitable content do you need for them. This also includes a clear hierarchy that is understandable for the user and a clear navigation on which your website visitors can find their way. This topic is also important in terms of SEO: Make sure not to create too many individual URLs (for example for each press release or for each “news” and for each appointment). Because the Google crawler (an algorithm that searches websites and ranks them for suitable search queries) does not search every single URL of your domain, but only a certain number. So don't waste your crawl budget on useless URLs that won't rank. This is how you can please Google and your users too.
Examples of successful navigations / menus on B2B websites:
7. The Content Management System (CMS)
A content management system is software that is used to create and manage content on your own website. Put simply, it is the construction kit or the editor (back-end) with which you create your company website. What the user ultimately sees when they visit your website is the front end. You should think about a suitable CMS at an early stage.
Some examples of good content management systems with which you can enter your content and design even without programming knowledge would be, for example, WordPress, Contao or Typo3. WordPress is suitable, for example, for simpler websites, with a blog function or your own shop. But if you have a very large, comprehensive website that needs a wide variety of complex functions, you will probably have to fall back on a more complex system such as Contao or Typo3.
There are now many providers such as wix.com, Jimdo or 1 & 1 that entice you with a simple editor. Here, however, you should reflect on your requirements for your company website. Because these static modular systems usually do not allow any individual adjustments, or only with great difficulty.
Basically, it is advisable to seek advice from an expert who can also program individual functions in the respective CMS and provide some stylings, layouts and formats for landing pages, your job portal or product pages. Then you can take care of the maintenance yourself in the future and have created a framework that ensures that all functions run flawlessly and that the users always find the pages of your website with the same look and feel.
There is also the option of having a CMS programmed individually by a professional and not using classic systems. However, caution applies here: The know-how about the CMS is then bundled with the people who developed it. If they leave your company, for example, you are faced with the problem that external experts find it difficult to understand what was developed there, how and why. CMS such as WordPress or Typo3, on the other hand, are known to developers and programmers and you can therefore fall back on the expertise of external experts. In addition, security standards and updates are guaranteed.
Good examples of a good B2B website
A good example of a successful company website from the B2B area would be that of the SCM project house Salt Solutions AG.
The SAP partner can stand out particularly in the following points:
Website design and brand: At first glance, the user recognizes that the design of the B2B website clearly reflects the corporate brand of Salt Solutions AG. In addition, the imagery, design elements, fonts and call to actions are used in a uniform, clear, modern and targeted manner.
Structure of the website and user guidance:
The user can get into the subject matter and content of the website in various ways: both via the clear menu and via structured internal links on the home page itself.
Content and search engine optimization
The company offers a wide range of content on its corporate website, including about the respective target industries, current trends in technology, data and software, as well as about the product solutions themselves. That pays off: Salt Solutions AG compares itself to direct competitors SEO-technically very good and can look forward to rankings for numerous, relevant keywords.
The manufacturer of polyurethane seat foams and established supplier of interior and particle foam components Proseat also relies on a clear website structure with an elegant design that underlines the brand.
Design and structure of the B2B website:
Proseat scores particularly well with the layout and structure of the company website. The start page and the structure according to “Company”, “Products”, “Development” and “Career” already offer clear entry points for a wide variety of target groups Search intentions. In addition, the design is modern and the user recognizes the company brand at any time.
Content and Products:
Furthermore, the question of “what” is answered directly. The user does not have to wonder what the company is actually doing and he will find explanatory content on the website - which both answers users' questions, clarifies the company's competence and represents the quality of the products.
The company website - what does it include?
While the company website acts as the central star of your online marketing activities, there are numerous satellites that can support this effect. We have listed the most important ones here.
The company website and social media
Today, social media is an integral part - not only privately, but also professionally, the communities on social networks such as Facebook and LinkedIn are used. Your social media strategy should always be adapted to your website: In B2B, social media mostly serves not only to build a brand, but also to attract relevant users to your own company website.
Social media marketing also generates relevant traffic for the corporate website. You should make sure that the visitors who come from social networks are not disappointed on your homepage and find, for example, completely different forms of communication, wordings, topics and images than your company publishes on LinkedIn, Xing and Co. It is therefore essential to adapt your posts to the linked content.
Microsite, landing page and corporate website - what is used when?
What is the difference between one Microsite, a landing page and a corporate website? The corporate website is your company website. It usually consists of a "home page" and many individual sub-pages, such as product pages, a blog, the imprint, an "about us" page, etc.
A landing page is a page that hangs under your domain (an example for a domain: www.vogel.de) but is usually not linked in the navigation or menu. The landing page has the same look as your website. However, their purpose is often linked to a campaign or it should only be accessible to certain users. For example, the content of a marketing campaign would be bundled on a landing page or the option to register for an exclusive event. Only those who know the link (URL) to the landing page can then call it up directly.
An example of a landing page:
The microsite: A microsite is like a miniature website. This can also be outsourced from your company website and its domain. In addition, a microsite can also be designed in a different CD than your company page - depending on the target of the microsite, you have numerous options here.
Advertisements, Ads, Native Advertising & Co: Paid Traffic Suppliers
There are a number of ways to get paid traffic to your company website. This area is also called Performance MarketerG. Regardless of whether it is advertisements on social networks, Google Ads or advertisements in online specialist media.
The payment formats offer the advantage that you can address and also reach a very specific target group for money. If your ads are good, the targeted users will reward them with one click and land on your company website. But it is important that you now also meet the expectations of your visitors with the content on your company website. Similar to social media posts, it is essential that you coordinate the ad and website content / landing page.
Conclusion: Why is the company website so important?
Many B2B companies do not yet rely on online marketing enough. And in fact, this field has developed enormously quickly and vehemently in recent years. Today you not only have to write, design, program, master social media and place and manage ads, you also have to be able to evaluate and interpret data, carry out search engine optimization, strategically plan campaigns and set up automated marketing. So a marketing department today has a lot of tasks to do.
The center of all these actions is yours Company website. It is the heart of your online presence and your visibility. Last but not least, your corporate website also decides whether your target group perceives you as a competent solution provider, whether your brand is recognizable and whether your preferred customers will become your buyers. This is why your company website is so important.
If you are looking at your website now and are not satisfied, we recommend our Whitepaper about the website relaunch. It tells you when a relaunch is necessary, what this project should look like and what you need to consider. We also show avoidable errors, tips and a checklist.
Laura GriebschAfter studying journalism (Bachelor of Arts B.A.) and doing an internship as a marketing and PR manager, Laura Griebsch quickly learned how lively B2B marketing is. She is always looking for topics that really help marketers: "Content drives action - otherwise it's poetry!"
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