A new survey has revealed how marketing professionals are struggling to convince decision-makers about the value of content marketing, due to a mix of high expectation and a lack of focus in terms of clear marketing ROI. And, while budgets are growing, it is getting harder to deliver the results now demanded by those holding the purse-strings. Marketers are under more scrutiny than ever, as the pressure is on to achieve the desired result. Kirsty Daniel investigates the survey findings.
New business acquisition has changed considerably. The digital-first world we live in has given potential prospects – your customers – a variety of ways to interact with a brand or business online.
In the B2B market of the past, new business was traditionally acquired through face-to-face meetings, advertisements and referrals. Businesses would spend time explaining the benefits of their services to these potential customers.
However, in today’s world, your website meets your prospects before you do.
More and more of your potential prospects find your business through digital channels such as Pay-Per-Click (PPC), organic search, email marketing, PR, social media, content marketing and mobile. All these channels will invariably drive potential prospects to your website – at which point they will begin investigating, analysing and creating their own opinion of your business.
As a result, before you even make contact with these potential prospects, they have already made their mind up about your business and its services – a hard fact to swallow for business owners! The modern prospect will guide themselves through 50% to 70% of the sales cycle before they even decide to have any communication with you and your sales team.
Your website is, therefore, incredibly important in influencing whether people decide to engage with you further. It is the first point at which businesses can truly influence the purchase decision process and generate high-quality sales leads.
So here are top tips to generate B2B sales leads online
In the first part of this three-part blog series, we are providing businesses with our top tips on what you can actually do to your website today in order to generate B2B sales leads online.
Step 1. Make your website Google-friendly
As most of your web visitors will find your business via organic search, make sure they CAN find you! Before you start with changing your website and adding new elements to it, you need to make it Google-friendly. Google doesn’t have an opinion on the colour or the look and feel, but it will crawl your site in order to understand where it should rank it for particular searches. This means that you need to optimise your site for specific keywords related to your business’s products, services and the industry it operates in, as this will make it easy for interested parties to find your website.
In order to do so, you need to follow a few basic guidelines.
- Ensure your website’s URLs include the corresponding keyword – for example: ‘yourdomain.com/the-search-term’
- Include your keyword in the H1 header for the web page and the page description and match the URL to it.
However, if you are developing a new website, the points above form the second part of the process. But firstly, you must:
- Create a list of specific keywords relevant to what it is your business does and what keyword terms you want it to be found for
- Group together similar keyword terms from these lists into groups (as this will enable you to expand your website in the future and target additional search terms with corresponding websites).
Step 2. Start a blog
Businesses that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those that don’t.
Convincing – right?
This is down to the fact that blogging enables you to create new web pages that are search engine optimised for a specific keyword, allowing you to driving more and more people to your website.
Over time, as you expand your keyword list, you can create more blog posts and web pages around those new keyword terms – giving you more opportunities to be found online. In addition, as you create more generate B2B, you build a repository of information people can turn to, improving your credibility in not only the eyes of your potential customers, but also Google.
Step 3. Include plenty of Calls-To-Action (CTAs)
The vast majority of websites only have one principal call-to-action, which is: ‘contact us’.
But we all know that ‘contact us’ actually means, “send me a big hairy salesman” – and no-one likes them, do they?
It’s important to appreciate that not everyone who arrives on your website will be ready to engage with a salesperson. A website which offers potential prospects no other means to interact with the business on a level other than ‘contact us’ will miss out on generating more leads.
In the modern buyer’s decision-making process, there are numerous steps – they may take time to read about your business and its services through eBooks, case studies, whitepapers, pricing documents, video content and much more. Therefore, it is vital that you provide them with other ways to investigate your business and what it does, other than a ‘contact us’ button.
These three tips should serve as an initial foundation and provide the answers you need on how to generate B2B sales leads via your website. In the next part of this three-part blog series, we address your website’s messaging, design and structure – and how these elements can help build a website visitors trust and which encourages them to engage with your business.
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