Websites certainly aren’t anything new. I can remember going on websites as far back as kindergarten and first grade. Granted, those were very different websites back then!
In 1998, visiting a website usually involved booting up your stylish, new, high-tech Windows 98 computer and cueing up your dial-up internet provider’s page (Netscape anyone?). Then, you’d hear the beautiful symphony of the dial-up connection (what were those noises supposed to be anyway?). Finally, if everything went according to plan, you made it to the big, bad internet.
Next, you got to take a nice, long, relaxing break as you watched the page load almost pixel by pixel (which sometimes took 2-3 minutes). Then, you could either type in the URL, or you could see if Yahoo! knew what you were looking for…or maybe even Ask Jeeves?
Long story short, websites have been around for a long time. However, the trends in design and functionality change daily.
Think back to that 1998 website experience that I described above. Back then, a website’s primary function was to tell you a few things about the company and maybe show you a few pictures — basically an online flyer. Websites today, on the other hand, are representations of brands. They’re a way to connect with the company, and they often function as digital storefronts. They’re faster, sleeker and geared toward educating an audience.
Today’s consumer websites change regularly in design and functionality, and the same applies to a B2B website as well. Even so, some people may still have misconceptions about B2B sites, so I’m dialed-up to debunk these 5 B2B website myths.
1. B2B websites have to be boring.
If I had to divine the origin of this statement, I’d say it comes from people who don’t understand the B2B marketplace and are therefore quick to dismiss it.
With an aesthetically attractive design, interactive graphics, embedded videos and more, B2B websites can be just as attractive as consumer sites.
Of course, B2B websites probably offer more advanced content, so the presentation is a true differentiator. When B2B websites are sleek, attractive, user-friendly and give all the right information, that is a direct reflection of a strong, organized brand.
Don’t be afraid to make your B2B website stand out from the rest. Be original and include all the information your audience is looking for.
2. B2B website content is all recycled — it doesn’t really say anything.
Au contraire! All B2B website content should be based on an insightful B2B content creation strategy. With a B2B content creation strategy, you can identify your prospects, gauge their needs, and create content that relates to THEM.
Your content should be educational, insightful, valuable, and relatable.
By definition, recycled content may be educational, but it probably isn’t insightful or valuable. Chances are if it’s recycled, it’s probably not relatable either because it isn’t geared towards a specific audience.
Good B2B content creation stems from making content that your audience will CARE about. That’s what makes remarkable content, well, remarkable! There’s no formula for B2B content creation, only a mindset.
3. No one will look at my B2B website.
This is also highly unlikely. If you have a solid, responsive website and a tailored B2B content creation strategy, your buyers will come to you. In fact, 78% of buyers conduct online research according to HubSpot. That’s almost 8 out of every 10 buyers! Your B2B website is an investment now and an investment in the future.
4. Once they’re done, they’re done.
This is probably the greatest of all website-based falsehoods. Websites are a process, not an end goal. They do reach temporary levels of completion, but they’re never completely “done.”
To keep your website engaging, it’s necessary to update the look, change the content and continually monitor how people interact with your site.
To keep your website functional, you must perform maintenance on a frequent basis. Failing to do so may leave your website open to hackers and errors (both of which can seriously hurt your B2B SEO strategy, reputation and profits).
5. You can’t track ROI from a B2B website.
With marketing automation and analytics software, this simply isn’t true. It’s entirely possible to discover which sales leads come from your website, and since B2B buyers live online, that number will most likely be high. More directly, your website can demonstrate ROI through an ecommerce store where you can sell directly to clients from your website.
B2B buyers live online, and their expectations are high. This necessitates a first-class B2B website and a content creation strategy to match. Don’t let your website get stuck in the past.
All marketing tactics should be thought of as part of a larger whole, rather than separate pieces. By strategically integrating all tactics, the programs become more effective and cost efficient. An Integrated marketing communication plan helps you meet real business objectives – generate leads, grow revenues, gain market share, and become the leading brand.