So what makes a perfect B2B website or indeed a web site of any description? I will briefly outline what I think are the key elements to creating a great website and also the ingredients that should be used to leverage the site and traffic you are getting.
Getting the Strategy right
The first thing to do is to decide what you are looking to achieve from the site, this can be any of the following:
- Increase Sales
- Increase Social Media followers, Likes etc
- Increase Brand awareness
- Showcase the company and its Ethos
- Sell products online
- Display your industry knowledge and build you company as a thought leader
The major aim of the site needs to be understood and communicated to the developer of the site along with any other aims you wish to achieve.
The sites layout and design
You need to map out the site and how it is going to interact with itself and any other external sites that you may want to link to. Work out what categories you will want in the site and also the hierarchy of the categories so that you can get the page layout of the site right from the start.
About the company
2.1. Product Cat 1
2.1.1. Product 1
2.1.2. Product 2
3.2. Technical Data
3.3. White Papers
4.1. Product Cat 1
4.1.1. Product 1
5.1. Case Studies
5.1.1. Market sector 1
5.1.2. Market Sector 2
5.2. Product News
5.3. Company News
This will help in the initial design of the database and the site as a whole.
Getting the back end right
The back end of the site should be built to be easy to use and straight forward so that a non-technical person can update the site with a little training. You need to try and include everything you will need and also build in SEO optimization factors such as location tags, Meta description etc.
Some must have features on a B2B website
- The Home page – This should be easy on the eye and have clear links to the important parts of the site
- Social Media Links – these should be both share buttons on relevant pages (landing pages product pages etc) and follow us buttons on most pages of the site.
- A subscribe to our newsletter link – if you have one – mail service houses can make this easy by providing code that includes people direct onto the mailing list
- Landing pages – usually on certain pages of the site, maybe product category pages , downloads etc
- Give away’s – usually information or calculators, maybe a white paper or a u value calculator
- Analytics – use a reputable website analytics programme
- Webmaster tools – register your site on goggle and bing
- Sitemap – have a sitemap and submit it to all of the major search engines
These are just a small example there are many other things that you may want to add but these are vital to almost any new site.
Some does and donts
- Get a good web developer (see my guide)
- Ask your prospective audience what they want
- Analyse your analytics
- Keep the site updated regularly
- Build the site for yourself build it for your clients
- Don’t use flash if you can avoid it
- Don’t over sell
If you follow these simple guidelines you should be able to create a functional and user friendly site. If you have any other thoughts please share them with me and my readers.