It’s a new year and a time for companies to take stock of their brand and decide what changes need to be made for 2021. When was the last time you took a critical look at your website? If you can’t remember or never have, there’s a good chance it’s in need of an update. The general rule of thumb for websites is an update every three years, but you shouldn’t rely on that alone. It’s a best practice to conduct an audit of your B2B website at least once a year. Performing a website audit will give you a better idea of whether your website needs any updated information, work, or a full redesign.
To help you review your website Bold Entity has put together B2B website audit criteria you can use. The B2B website audit criteria is broken down into three sections: messaging and layout, technicals, and design trends. This is the first in a 3-part series about B2B website audits.
B2B Website Audit: Messaging & Layout
To start, flip through your website and if you can review the sitemap. Is your B2B website easy to navigate? Can visitors quickly and easily find the information they need. Once they enter all the pages can they easily get back? Can visitors reach any page of the site with just a few clicks? This is often referred to as the unofficial, 3-click rule of website design. The number of clicks are less important than the ease in which visitors can navigate the site. Make sure your website menus and other navigational aides are easy to find and use. If your B2B website does not already include breadcrumb navigation, consider adding it.
Review the copy on your website. Are all the paragraphs easy to understand? The likely answer is yes, but you also have a close familiarity with your business. It can be helpful to have a friend or spouse review the website copy to see if they understand what’s being said. Your website’s messaging should be clear and easily digestible by someone who isn’t a subject matter expert in your industry. The copy on your website should also be concise and to the point. Users navigating your website are looking for critical information, not to cozy up with a good book. Make sure all your copy is to the point and stops once all the critical information has been relayed.
In addition to being easy to read, your B2B website should feature a sensible flow that pulls visitors into your lead generation pipeline. Your B2B website should provide easy-to-find, consumable content targeted to a person at each stage of the buyer’s journey. That content should have engaging call-to-actions, easy-to-fill forms with only the most necessary information, and provide valuable pieces of downloadable content in exchange for the lead’s information. If you are looking at your website right now and realizing you don’t have any of this, make this a primary 2021 goal for your business and contact Bold Entity. We can help you develop an inbound marketing plan that supercharges your B2B website as a lead generation tool.
Third Party Validation
Safe to assume your B2B website paints your company in the best light. In fact, it probably extolls how your company is the best around and the perfect choice for your prospect. However, there’s a big difference between you telling a prospect you’re great, and someone else telling a prospect you’re great. That’s what we call third-party validation or “social proof.” Make sure your website shows off your business’s glowing reviews, highlights from your social media comments, and featured client testimonials. As a B2B company, you know the importance of a good referral. Make sure you’re using your B2B website as a platform to showcase these testimonials.
Search Engine Optimized Content
It’s the 21st century so your business has a website and ostensibly wants people to find it by searching on the internet for solutions to their challenges. After all, a business that doesn’t know about you can’t purchase your offerings. To rank on Google you only need to create content on your website that’s relevant to your prospects and their challenges and promotes you as an authority on those subjects. Your website only gains authority by other people being interested your content. So make sure to share your content and shout it from the rooftops. Content promotion should be a cornerstone of your email and social media marketing efforts. Two more places where Bold Entity can lend you a helping hand. Give us a call.
Importance of Messaging & Layout for B2B Websites
Messaging and layout is arguably the most important part of your website where visitors are concerned. Your liable to turn off prospects if your website is difficult to read or hard to navigate. The job of your website is to make it as easy and tempting as possible for a prospect to take that next step in the buyer’s journey. The best way to do that is by creating website copy and content that provides value to your prospects and positions your B2B company as a trusted provider and the obvious choice for their business. That includes making sure your website is optimized to rank in search results so prospects can actually find you and discover you’re the right choice for them.
How does your B2B website stack up, does your messaging and layout accurately serve the purpose of your website and your prospect’s needs? In part two we will take a peek behind the curtain of your website to conduct the technical portion of your quick, B2B website audit.