B2B Website Design: The Key Elements You Need

B2B website design is a world apart from most B2C websites.

That’s stemmed from the fact that most B2B purchases aren’t impulsive buys.

Honestly, how many people do you believe stumble onto a supplier’s website armed with only a little information from a blog and make a large, e-commerce style purchase?

Because of the larger investments and increased risks involved, B2B customers usually want to speak with someone before they commit.

But despite that, a B2B website needs to be more than just an informational pamphlet.

Even though it’s not going to write the contract or take payment (most of the time), it’s still the best member of your sales team.

You’ve seen the value of a website that’s designed to sell.

Think about every B2C site you’ve been to.

It’s time to get your B2B website design caught up.

You Need A Sales Ready B2B Website Design

I want to define “sales-ready” B2B website design before I say anything else.

Your B2B website should be a lead factory, producing qualified leads steadily.

Even though it might take those leads an average of 6 to 9 months to make a final decision, a sales-ready site supports that time.

Everything about a sales-ready B2B website is designed to:

  • Point out your target market’s pain points
  • Reflect their goals
  • Attract qualified leads
  • Help those leads move through the sales funnel

Once you put everything in place, you need to make sure your site is professionally designed and polished.

A better B2B site means better B2B leads and stronger B2B sales. Click To Tweet

By upping the ante like this your website can stand out over your competition.

High-quality, original photography, easily-read font, plenty of white-space, and a completely responsive layout all add credibility and class to your brand.

Informative B2B Website Design Is More Important Than Ever

The bar for B2B website design continues to get higher.

In years past, B2B sites did well enough just by having the content they needed without worrying about the way their site looked.

But, because the world has grown accustomed to high-end design, everyone expects to find it everywhere on the web.

When your site doesn’t feel like it belongs on the modern web it starts to drive people away.

“Good enough for B2B” is no longer an option. Click To Tweet

Your site needs to accurately reflect your brand identity, mission statement, and core values.

Part of the reason is that modern buyers spend much more time learning about your company before they contact a salesperson.

They’re already much further along in the funnel, often having consumed more content from your website that used to come from your sales team.

Questions that your salespeople used to answer are now handled through the content on your website.

People now know as much as – and sometimes more than – the salespeople about the product they’re buying.

Customers are simply more educated.

By creating a website that provides the bulk of that education you’re owning the narrative.

That puts you in a better position of brand preference much earlier in the buying process.

With that kind of importance, you’d better have everything you need in place.

These are the keys to better B2B website design.

Start With A Quick Pitch

Look at the first words on your website.

If you used only those words to tell someone what you do for a living, what would happen?

Unfortunately, many B2B website designs feature headlines like “Capturing results through inspired innovation.”

Pretty confusing if you ask me.

A headline like that doesn’t tell your audience anything about the service you provide or the industry you’re in.

It doesn’t tell them anything.

State what you do in an obvious way. Click To Tweet

Rather than making your site visitors scroll forever to find out if they’ve got the right company, let your page header tell them immediately.

Look at ours, either on our homepage or on any of our service pages.

We make it immediately clear what we do for our clients.

The reason it’s important to let your audience know up-front is to show that you value their time.

Wasting their time will encourage them to go elsewhere.

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Put A Focus On Keywords and Keyphrases

SEO is a huge element that allows your website to bring in leads.

If people can’t find you in search, they can’t connect with you.

So, a big part of your B2B website design needs to focus on the correct keywords.

Your service pages are usually the best place to do that.

They’re easy to optimize for search and people frequently look for services.

These searches are called “commercial intent” keyphrases, and they’re great for bringing in the right leads.

People who search for them are looking for what you offer even if they don’t know your brand.

Find the keywords that the best leads are likely to search for. Click To Tweet

You need to do a little keyword research as a result.

Look for keywords and keyphrases that are high search volume but low competition.

Google’s Keyword Planner can help you figure this out.

Create pages that align with your selected key phrases, proving their relevance through related phrases.

They should appear alongside the target keyphrases in the title, headers, and body text.

From my experience, it seems to do well at approximately one target keyphrase per 200 words.

The more pages you can align with a keyphrase, the more opportunities you have to connect with a high-intent visitor.

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Include Visual Credibility

Your B2B website design needs to differentiate your brand from your competition.

Thankfully, this is something that can be done with a quick visual element.

Add images that share any awards your brand has received.

Include the logos of the major clients you’re working with.

Feature any partnerships your business is involved in.

And, if you have special certifications, add their seals to your page.

These “trust seals” build instant credibility and, as their name suggests, trust.

When you’ve got others backing what you say, it boosts your credibility. Click To Tweet

When potential clients see that your brand is well-known and has the experience, they tend to trust what you say a little more.

Plus, because no other brand will have the same combination of trust seals as you, you set your brand apart immediately.

Often, it’s the things that set you apart that become the reason your potential clients choose you.

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Say Something With Your Subheads

Subheads are a standard part of B2B website designs.

They’re the section titles that tell your audience what they’ll be looking at next.

And, for the most part, they’re uninspired.

Look, the section titles on your site are supposed to draw attention to the content below them.

Telling the visitor what’s in each section, your subheads help your audience decide if they want to slow down and read what’s there.

When they aren’t descriptive or enticing your visitors won’t slow down to see what’s there.

Give your audience a reason to stop and read. Click To Tweet

However, if they say something that matters, people are more likely to read.

You want people to read what’s in every section.

That’s what helps do the job of a salesperson before your site visitor ever contacts your sales team.

Instead of using standard fare like “Who We Are”, try something more interesting.

Pretend you build custom stunt cars for movies.

Try using “Founded by Stunt Drivers, Run by Race Mechanics”.

It sounds much more compelling, and it tells your audience more about your team immediately.

Specificity isn’t just good for your visitors, though.

Google uses it to rank you better, which results in more opportunities.

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A B2B Website Design Should Feature Answers

Nobody goes to a B2B website just to browse around.

Like I pointed out earlier, it’s rarely an impulse thing.

Visitors to your site want answers, most often to questions you normally hear.

Think about it this way.

If someone called right now to talk about the service, why might they be calling?

Are there questions they’ll probably ask?

What major concerns do they likely have?

How would you answer them?

Your website should feel a lot like one of these sales conversations.

Let your website do some of the routine work for you. Click To Tweet

Be sure your B2B website design takes them through much of the conversation for you.

It handles some of the most common questions, objections, and obstacles.

Giving them examples, it educates your visitors about what you do.

The more educated they are, the higher your odds of getting them as a lead and client go up.

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Make The Formatting Easy To Read And Understand

Walls of text suck.

Dense paragraphs stacked like blocks across your website don’t make it easy for your visitors to ingest your content.

They’ll typically get scanned and quickly forgotten.

Instead, keep your paragraphs short.

A general rule of thumb suggests no longer than 3 lines.

Notice the paragraphs you’re reading now are much shorter.

The easier you make your content to consume, the less likely your audience is to hit the back button and find their answer elsewhere.

Many other companies are competing for your audience’s attention. Click To Tweet

Competition for attention is ruthless, after all.

Break up those walls of text with things like lists, links, and short sentences.

You can always throw in images and other block-like elements that help convey the message without detracting as well.

Also, try to make sure your text is big enough and contrasting enough.

B2B website design doesn’t work if people can’t read it.

Keep it clear and easy to read if you want to earn the leads.

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Share Your Clients’ Happiness

We’ve talked about social proof before.

There’s something insanely valuable to demonstrate that you’ve done well for others.

Every time you say something about yourself it comes across as marketing, often getting ignored.

When someone with no vested interest in your company’s success says something good about you it resonates as social proof.

Psychologically, social proof shows your audience they’re making the right choice by showing them others who got the results they want.

Testimonials help to make deciding to work with you safe. Click To Tweet

Plus, testimonials tend to answer common questions better than you ever could.

That helps people decide to move forward easier.

But if that wasn’t enough, testimonials are also a great place for a few more keywords and related phrases.

As text-based elements, they’re additional great content that Google will use to help rank your site.

So, set up your B2B website design to feature testimonials in multiple places.

They keep your website from becoming a steaming heap of unsupported claims.

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Fill Your B2B Website Design With Strong, Supportive Graphics

Earlier I mentioned high-quality photography.

Photos, used correctly, can add additional information or context to the content on the page.

However, photos aren’t the only things that should be used in the graphics department.

Charts, graphs, infographics, and other visuals are more compelling than text alone.

They’re also more likely to be seen and remembered, making them incredibly valuable.

Whenever you can, use them on your site.

Visuals encourage your audience to get mentally involved with the content they’re looking at.

Stock imagery shouldn’t be something your site has if you can avoid it. Click To Tweet

Something custom and unique to your brand will work better than something stock.

Try to avoid stock if anything else is an option.

Custom graphics help assure that all the information aligns with your brand and fits into your B2B website design.

Creating a clean flowing appearance is crucial to making sure your audience keeps paying attention.

When they’re paying attention, they’re working their way towards becoming a lead.

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Show Off Your Team

People are hard-wired to look at other people.

Especially faces.

Adding pictures of people to your website makes it more interesting.

They “sell” your brand better.

Theoretically, you could do that with stock photos.

But what did I just say about that?

Using pictures that feature you and your employees – and your clients where it makes sense – lends legitimacy to your site.

People connect with your brand when they feel like they know who is behind it. Click To Tweet

Letting people know who is behind the brand and who they might work with helps make human connections and sets their minds at ease.

And don’t forget that your team is one more way your company is different from your competitors.

Nobody else has them.

So, rather than trying to look bigger, like most small businesses do, try to look human.

Making that connection will change everything for your brand.

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Give Your Audience The Stats

Evidence that your brand is amazing doesn’t just have to come from testimonials.

People strongly trust good data that conveys the experience or value of your brand.

Providing that data is a great way to nudge site visitors towards becoming a lead.

Consider the following statistics:

  • Years you’ve been in business
  • Number of clients you’ve successfully worked with
  • Size of your team
  • Combined company experience
  • Average client ROI

You can couple these stats with industry and company-specific statistics that your audience cares about.

People love statistics. Click To Tweet

Giving them a little creativity within your B2B website design can make them pop, helping you stand out in your field.

Statistics are rational, and they help people fulfill their desire to make rational decisions.

Data is evidence to back your claims and set you apart.

But claims without evidence are baseless and dismissible.

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Your B2B Website Design Should Flow Smoothly

Ever been to a website that has your eyes bouncing everywhere?

If you have, you probably left quick.

A website should have a visual process that easily directs you to the next thing you should be looking at.

Starting at the top, the page should walk you through each section, prioritizing the order you should be reading it with obvious cues.

That’s a hallmark of great B2B website design.

Nothing is competing for your attention.

Everything continues to follow a clear, logical flow.

Websites have to follow a logical progression of information. Click To Tweet

Your site’s visual process has to be crafted early in the design process and use size, placement, color, and whitespace to direct your audience down the page.

Done right, that process becomes a guided conversation with your site visitors, walking them through the ideas you want to present.

It increases clarity and trust as the visitor continues through the content.

By the end, there’s no reason your site visitor shouldn’t feel better about what you do.

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Don’t Be Afraid Of Saying Too Much

For some reason, small businesses are afraid of adding too much information to their website.

They don’t want to “sound too wordy” when they’re writing down the information they’d use to sell.

However, the best sales calls take a while to complete.

Your prospect has many questions, and your salesperson should be offering thorough answers to them.

So, with that in mind, your B2B website design shouldn’t be any different.

Any given page on your site – provided it’s completely covered the topics on it – should be 800 to 1000 words long, and often even longer.

The more information you can give, the better your odds at getting the lead. Click To Tweet

If your page is too short, you didn’t give your salesperson (website) enough time with the prospect.

The conversation is cut short long before it’s over.

Address everything you can on your site, answering every question, and addressing every objection you can think of.

Even though you’ve heard your site audiences have a short attention span, your pages shouldn’t be short.

Just broken up into sections that make it easy to digest, as I said before.

Give them the whole answer and you’ll get back a lead.

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Tell Your Visitors What To Do Next

One of the biggest mistakes many B2B website designs make is that they end abruptly with no thought of what the site visitor should do next.

Page upon page simply stops when the information is given.

That’s like parking a race car on the side of the track just before crossing the checkered flag.

When the audience gets to the end of your page, what are they left with?

Should they scroll back to your navigation and hit the “Contact” link, or should they close your site and do something else?

Give your website visitors clear instructions on what they should do with the information you give them. Click To Tweet

Instead, give them the next action at the bottom of the page.

Add a compelling call-to-action towards the bottom of your pages, giving them a chance to continue the conversation.

Use verbs that compel them to do something there.

Words like “contact”, “read”, “learn”, and “click” aren’t doing much for you.

Instructions like “Give me my free consultation!” or “Turn the key on your custom stunt car!” are much more enticing.

Calls-to-action must be unique to you and your brand, and they’ve got to gently nudge your visitor in the right direction.

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A Great B2B Website Design Is Within Reach

There’s no reason your B2B website design should remain outdated.

With all the knowledge of how to make your site sales-ready, you should be able to make it something that supports your sales team efficiently.

And you should find yourself able to close more sales as a result of leads that come through it once you do.

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B2B Website Design: The Key Elements You Need

by Michael McNew Read in 12 min