In the business of selling to other businesses, the corporate decision makers charged with researching and making purchases on behalf of their companies will perform much of this activity by themselves, and online. What’s more, the Business to Business or B2B market is heavily populated with organisations that offer a similar range of products or services. Most (if not all) now have an online presence – meaning that customers must somehow differentiate between brands from a plethora of B2B websites.
Given this challenge of making your business stand out in a highly competitive digital market, it should come as little surprise that web design matters – and that the site features, layout, and usability of your B2B website can have a huge impact on your potential customers, and on your own business, as a result.
[Image source: SCNSoft.com]
How does B2B web design affect your business? Here are seven key ways:
1. B2B Web Design Determines How Well Your Website Speaks to Your Target Audience
The target audience for your B2B website will consist of the key buyer personas charged with making purchasing decisions on behalf of their businesses. So, no matter how beautifully designed your website may be, if you don’t understand the needs and pain points of these key players, speak their language, and present them with a value proposition that appeals to them specifically and directly, your B2B website is doomed to fail.
In this regard, there are a number of considerations that visitors to B2B websites look out for in a good web design, as indicated by the chart below: Importance of B2B website characteristics
[Image source: Orbit Media Studios]
2. Your B2B Website Needs to be Mobile Friendly – and Provide a Great User Experience
It’s now accepted wisdom that over 50% of all internet traffic comes from mobile devices. Moreover, Google Search rankings are now primarily based on mobile-first indexing. For B2B web design, this means that businesses looking to create visually appealing websites that give visitors a great user experience and help the business drive conversions must make their websites mobile friendly.
Responsive design is key to this. A web design which is responsive automatically adjusts the layout of your B2B website to fit the form factor of the screen on which it appears. So the same B2B web design may display differently, when viewed on a desktop system or mobile device. In fact, recent research by GoodFirms indicates that 53.8% of web designers cite “not being responsive on all devices” as a top reason for a website needing to be redesigned.
3. Speed Matters
A study by 55 and Deloitte commissioned by Google revealed that decreasing the page load times on a mobile website by just one tenth of a second resulted in major increases in conversion rates (8.4% for retail sites). In today’s digital market, some 83% of users say they expect website pages to load in three seconds or less. If a page takes longer than that, they’ll likely hit the “back” button.
So for B2B web design, speed needs to be of the essence. B2B websites can reduce page loading speeds in a number of ways, including by caching web pages, compressing visual images, and limiting the number of redirects.
4. You Need a Visually Appealing Website that’s Consistent with Your Company’s Brand
B2B website visitors are looking for a visually appealing web design which enables them to instantly identify your company’s unique branding and value proposition. In today’s web design terms, that translates to a B2B website with a minimalist design that uses high contrast for increased visibility, and colour schemes that keep users engaged while effectively communicating your branding.
Recent studies by Top Design Firms suggest that 26% of consumers prefer primary colour schemes, 21% prefer complementary, and 20% prefer analogous colour schemes. In all cases, the choice of colours for your B2B websites must be consistent, and align with your branding.
5. B2B Websites Must Be Easy to Navigate
B2B consumers require a website which enables them to identify what they’re looking for instantly, with features and navigation elements that enable them to achieve that goal as quickly and easily as possible. In terms of the functional minimalism school of web design, this means logically organised web page sections and page orders, and the generous use of white space as an informal navigational guide.
6. Security is Important to B2B Website Users
For your B2B website, you’ll need to purchase an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate, so that the website has an HTTPS denomination in its web address. B2B websites should also include safeguards to ensure that any information visitors provide cannot be stolen. This is especially true if your B2B website includes online payment options.
7. Your Choice of B2B Design Partner Matters
It’s unlikely that your business will possess the in-house web design skills and coding expertise needed to meet all the requirements above. You will therefore probably need to partner your business with a capable and reputable B2B website design agency.
You will need a B2B web design and technology partner that is capable of identifying and communicating the key elements of your business's brand message and value proposition to your target customers and website visitors. You also require a B2B website design agency that can help you provide the nurturing content marketing materials that generate leads, and mechanisms for converting visitors from potential customers into actual consumers, and ultimately, loyal customers and brand advocates.
Here at Incisive Edge, we employ a team of experts that includes qualified data scientist resources, who can help you build a B2B website that truly performs when it comes to organic search traffic. We begin with an SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) audit, looking across your B2B website performance through the lens of Google Search, measure performance using our specialist web tools, and identify where you want to be seen.
We select performance metrics which are important to your business, and continually track the performance of your B2B website via the user’s browser, on both desktop and mobile. The report we generate will break down your B2B website score metric by metric, and give you a clear next step, helping your business to take your desired action and boost performance.
To find out more about how Incisive Edge’s B2B web design and B2B website monitoring services can have a positive effect on your business, get in touch with us.