28 Pointers for Industrial B2B Website Design
If one of your goals for 2016 is to redesign your website, here is the low-down on what’s important.
At the top of the list should be focusing your time and money on making the biggest impact for your customers and your ROI. The guide below is designed to help.
The Lines Between B2C and B2B Have Blurred
With the worldwide web being used for so many purposes, by so many people, for so many different purposes, the lines between B2B sites and B2C sites are blurred, even in industrial markets.
Purchasing managers are getting younger, and regularly use B2C sites in their daily lives, on all types of devices, for everything from social networking to research to buying household items. The ease of use, simple design and device responsiveness of B2C sites have become the standard.
When they go to work in the morning, the same purchasing agents want the same features on the B2B sites they use for work, including research, purchasing and interacting with their suppliers and manufacturers.
Amazon Helped to Reset the Bar
With all of the different types of people attracted to the 24/7, self-serve, instant gratification of Amazon.com, it’s pretty safe to say that members of your target audience are some of them.
They have lead the blurring of the lines between B2B and B2C, with a millions of different products available on both sides of the fence. The only real difference lies in who is paying and the volume of product ordered.
“These B2C experiences all feel incredibly simple and easy. Because the barriers have dropped and this data flows freely across multiple channels (mobile, desktop, e-mail, etc.), your customer isn’t going to accept a B2B experience that isn’t as simple. Search, discovery, comparison, configuration and a host of supporting downloads are becoming mandatory to retain and convert your customers’ visits into revenue.” David Bandi, “What do Do When Your Website Isn’t Enough”, ThomasNet Blog
Mobile Devices Could Kill Your Google Ranking
Understanding how you experience websites on mobile devices is as simple as pulling a few of them up. Sites that are responsive on a mobile device will align all of the content into a single column, making it easy to scroll down the page, click on links, fill out forms and make purchases. They eliminate horizontal scrolling, tiny links and the need to enlarge a page for reading.
Having a mobile-friendly site is not only crucial for a good user experience, but also for your Google ranking. In 2015, Google revised their algorithm to favor sites that are mobile friendly, and punish those who are not. If your site is not mobile-responsive, be prepared to lose search engine ranking in 2016.
And it’s not only Google rank that could be affected. “Tech buyers are increasingly using mobile devices during the course of the industrial buying process.”
- 27% conduct product searches
- 26% view supplier websites
- 16% request pricing
- 12% purchase parts and components
From Web Responsiveness Guide, Industrial Strength Marketing
10 Ways to Create a Better User Experience
The 10 Jakob Nielson Usability Heuristics provide a guide to the most important factors in making a site user-friendly for any type of customer or prospect. Learn more at ConversionXL.com.
- Make system status highly visible (headers, breadcrumbs, progress bars, etc)
- Match the system to the real world (terminology familiar to the reader)
- Allow user control and freedom
- Consistency and standards
- Prevent errors
- Base everything on recognition, instead of recall (where to go and what to do next)
- Encourage efficiency and flexibility of use
- Keep design aesthetically minimalist
- Allow users to recognize, diagnose and recover from errors
- Offer help and documentation
10 Musts for Business Branding and Content
Even if your website is optimized for usability, there are other factors to consider in making your site represent your business, easily found on Google and easily shared on social media. Learn more at EcommerceConsulting.com.
- Customer centered site content map (navigation)
- Rich media
- Need for speed
- Mobile optimized and mobile friendly
- Social media sharing
- Digital marketing plan
- Measure, analyze, project
- Don’t get complacent
8 Ways to Build a Perfect Product Page
Although the rest of the content on your site is important, the product pages are absolutely critical for turning visitors into buyers. Learn more at Hubspot.com.
- Building the perfect product page
- Research how visitors consume the data on your product pages.
- Develop product positioning.
- Create compelling product videos
- Don’t shy away from product comparisons
- Offer testimonials or case studies
- Clearly display the next steps
- Measure it all
Whether you want to make a few changes to your site, or revamp the whole thing, it’s a necessity to stay on top in the competitive, global arena of 2016.
Is your company planning to put more resources to the website this year?
We’d love to hear what important things are at the top of your list. Leave a comment below or join us on social media!