What’s the difference between B2B selling and B2C selling?
Well, quite a lot. The order values are much bigger, people’s livelihoods are involved, there are a lot more people involved in the buying circle and the relationship between business and customer runs a lot deeper than in B2C.
But what’s the difference between a B2B customer and a B2C customer?
There no big difference. The world of B2B Ecommerce has blown up over the last couple of years, with the industry adding an impressive 10% in revenue this year when compared with 2020. This growth has been mirrored by the expectations of B2B customers who are less willing to tolerate slow loading speeds, questionable security and poorly designed sites – the usual conversion rate killers.
All of the above are not only bad for your conversion rates, but they will also cause you untold SEO headaches. Here, we will outline how to optimise your site and formulate a B2B SEO strategy that will drive up sales, meet those growing customer expectations and improve your search rankings.
Creating a B2B SEO strategy
There are three types of SEO that every Ecommerce manager needs to consider regardless of the industry that they operate in:
- Technical SEO – this is your site’s general health such as loading speeds etc.
- Off-page SEO – this includes things like backlinks and how visitors to pages respond to the content that’s on them.
- On-page SEO – this is basically everything that’s on a page and needs to be supported by effective content marketing.
Before you begin forming your B2B SEO strategy, you need to do a bit of homework.
Creating buyer personas to know who are you talking to
Firstly, it’s important that you develop a strong understanding of who your customers are and learn a bit about their different buying personas. For example, its good to know what industry they’re working in, what positions they hold and what size business they work in?
Doing this in as much detail as possible will give you a good idea of where to target your marketing efforts and what type of language and content your audience is most likely to respond to. Understanding different buyer personas are at the core of all good SEO and CRO strategies and can save you a fortune in marketing costs if done effectively.
Conduct keyword research
Secondly, you must do your keyword research. What types of words and phrases are your customers searching for that leads them to your site? Understanding this and adding these pieces of language to your content in a way that appears natural and appropriate will help your pages rank higher on search engines and drive traffic towards your site.
Learning how to do this is very easy. Google Analytics is a great free tool that clearly shows what the most common search terms used by your visitors.
However, it is also worth mentioning that keyword research should not be strictly limited to search engines but should also consider the types of discussion that those in your target audience are having online, as these can influence their searching behaviour.
Optimised product pages
Finally, think about how this information can be applied to your product pages. These pages are the business end of your site, so it’s imperative that they’re as well optimised as possible in order to drive up conversions and maintain your site’s overall SEO. This is where you need to bring all your research together to create healthy pages that resonate with your customers.
Your product pages will make up the bulk of all your site’s pages, so it won’t come as a surprise that they have a huge bearing on your site’s SEO. Product page optimisation is an essential part of any B2B SEO strategy and doing this well will go a long way to boosting your conversion rates as well.
Strategically used keywords and concise descriptions
Your product pages need to match the intent of your users. This is where keyword research comes in handy. Knowing what queries your customers are searching for before arriving lets you know what questions they need answers to. Answering these questions in a way that fits within clear and concise product descriptions and titles will go a long way to improving your SEO.
Images and videos as a sales tool
Images and videos also play a huge part in both SEO and CRO. Your product imagery is the biggest sales tool at your disposal and should be the centrepiece of any product page, so make sure that you are doing your products justice and answering as many questions as possible by showing pictures from all angles and in use. This not only fulfils the needs of your customers but also looks good to the search engine bots who regularly visit and assess your website. This will be helped further by making sure that images are stored in modern, space-efficient formats that will help your pages load quickly.
Invest in writing the metadata
It’s important that you fill out as much metadata as you can. This is a matter of off-page SEO and is essentially all the background information that search engines have access to but is not immediately clear to the user. Make sure that images are titled correctly, that the URL contains the product name and that all keywords are included within the meta descriptions. This makes the bot’s job easier, which in turn, makes it a good SEO technique.
Call to action buttons
Imagine how frustrating it would be if you were in a shop and you couldn’t find the till. This is the experience you’re creating if you’re customers can’t easily find your call-to-action buttons. Buttons to checkout, add to basket, select delivery option etc should all be readily accessible in order to avoid customer drop-off and boost conversions.
Delivery and credit info
This is what sets B2B Ecommerce format apart from the B2C one. It’s not uncommon for B2B vendors to offer credit and flexible delivery options to their trusted clients. If this is something that you offer, then include it on your product pages. If you don’t, new customers will much sooner look elsewhere than contact you to ask and you’ll miss out on those conversions.
Enhance the power of content in B2B
Creating trust is just as important in boosting conversions in the world of Ecommerce as it is offline. One of the most effective ways of doing this is by making extra content that shows off your company’s expertise, promotes your brand’s image and creates a sense of community between yourself and your customers.
Creating good quality content, such as blogs or video tutorials, gives you the chance to answer more customer questions than you can on your product pages alone and you can use the same data mentioned in the previous points to influence the choice of topics you choose to create content around. If done properly, this will take you further along the path to matching your customer’s intent and will open your site up to more general search terms that will help drive up organic traffic.
There are three main things to consider when creating extra content as a B2B merchant:
- The target audience – remember who you cater for and focus on them. You’re much better off cementing a solid reputation amongst those who use your business than you are trying to please those who don’t.
- How the topic relates to the audience – Will what you’re making strike a chord with the people who you want it to? There would be nothing worse than making content that your target audience just doesn’t get, so use your keyword and analytical data to work out what they want to know.
- How will the content benefit the audience – Will the audience come away with all their questions answered? If you can guarantee this, then you can rest assured that you’ve done all you can to encourage them to come back again.
There is no point in creating content for the sake of it. If what you are making is irrelevant and of a poor quality, then both your audience and the search engine bots will pick up on this and it will damage your credibility and search rankings.
Sure, not every piece of content needs to be a clinically straightforward piece and it’s good to add personality. For example, sharing news about achievements within your business, such as an award nomination, is a great way to build a sense of personalisation and community around your brand that encourages trust amongst your audience whilst not addressing any of their questions.
Remember, when both forming a good B2B SEO strategy and making extra content, remember to do your research and make sure every change you make has the customer’s intent in mind.
If you need help on the way, reach out to our SEO Ecommerce experts, they’ll jump in. We’re a Magento SEO agency and E-commerce experts.