The most successful business initiatives are founded on careful, strategic planning. The same holds true for effective B2B websites. While the “fun” part of a website is often the design itself, it’s critical to have a strong foundation to create a website that not only looks great but also functions well, has compelling content and meets the needs of the company and the end users.
In this article, we share tips from our years of experience working on B2B website designs to help you define the essential foundation of a great website: its objectives.
Questions to Ask Internally
You likely have a general idea of the objectives of your B2B website, but it may need refining. Or, you may just be getting started and looking for some direction from our website experts. Either way, we have a few questions to help you get started in defining or refining your B2B website’s objective.
- What are your business goals?
Before you can define the objective or objectives of your B2B website, you need to have a clear understanding of your business goals. Is your firm focused on growth and expansion? Are you looking to stay the same size but increase revenue? Is securing funding the main focus?
Write out your business goals and be specific.
- What will help us to reach those goals?
Once you have a clear understanding of your main business goals, you can ask what types of materials or strategies will help to meet those goals. If you are looking to streamline your sales process and increase revenue without adding headcount, you may need to focus on getting more qualified leads. If you are new to a space or looking to expand into a new product market or service offering, increasing brand awareness will help you to make the most impact. Other tactics may include building a new brand identity, securing strategic partnerships, establishing credibility, or building up your thought leadership on a particular topic or industry.
Determine what means will help you to reach your business goals.
- How are we currently using our website and what do we wish we could get from it?
Next, look at your existing B2B website, see what you are currently getting from it (if anything) and what you wish you could get from it. Do you want to start getting qualified leads through the website? Do you want your website to be a digital brochure that showcases the efficacy of your products or services? Do you want to explain your company’s story and educate potential investors about your mission and vision? Do you want your B2B website to be a living, breathing resource center to build up your firm’s credibility and establish trust with potential clients?
Draft what you currently get from your website and what you want to get from your website.
Why does great B2B web design take so long?
Define Your B2B Website Objectives
Now that you’ve done some introspection at a high level and visualized the larger goals of your organizations, it’s time to define your B2B website objectives. With your business goals, ideas on reaching the goals, and website wish list, define the main function(s) of the website. We suggest limiting it to 2 – 3 objectives. While a web design can do more, focusing on 2 – 3 objectives makes it easier to have a clear, unified vision for your team and your organization.
A 5-minute B2B website audit.
A Few Things to Keep in Mind:
- Be realistic. A B2B website can’t do everything at once, especially if you have a smaller team or set of resources. Ensure that the objective(s) of your website take into account the resources available to support it.
- Be specific and clear. The more specific you can be, the better the results of your website and the easier it is to track performance and results. Vague, broad objectives are often hard to communicate, track, and get the right results.
- Make sure it’s consistent with business objectives. Your website objectives must be in line with your business goals. If they aren’t in line, you won’t be able to get internal buy-in or support for your results. If you are focused on driving leads, but no one in the industry is familiar with your business, you will likely fail to get the number of leads you are looking to get.
- Ensure it’s valuable and attainable. In addition to being realistic, you must focus on objectives that are valuable and realistic based on your product/service offerings, the industry, and your company’s resources. You can’t “be the next Microsoft” if you don’t have the resources, internal buy-in, or available target market. Additionally, you can’t expect to get 20 – 30 leads a month if you are in a highly competitive industry that has a very small target market.
Questions you should be asking before designing a new B2B website.
Still Struggling to Define Website Objectives?
When in doubt, work with people who know websites inside and out. Work with experienced B2B website design professionals who know your industry and understand the challenges you are facing. They can help guide you down the path to defining and spelling out your website objectives. They can also help you to craft a website that meets those objectives by keeping the project on task and moving forward.
Questions about an upcoming B2B website project? Schedule a one-on-one consultation to get your website questions answered.