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Does Your Website Connect with Customers?

We can’t just put up a generic website and expect people to get a good experience or expect it to help drive engagement for sales.

A B2B buyers survey by Demand Gen Report provided some interesting results that should have a direct impact on how you manage your company’s website and content marketing.

Among the findings, 45% of respondents said they’re using more sources to research and evaluate purchases. Is your corporate website visible enough to be one of those resources? Does it provide the information that your potential customers are looking for?


Information is King

The following variables were reported as very important when the respondents were ready to evaluate suppliers:

  • Features/functionality (72%)
  • Solved a pain point (72%)
  • Demonstrated experience with or knowledge of respondent’s industry (62%)
  • Case studies/testimonials (rated as very important by 47% of survey participants)
     

The survey also found that over 60% of the respondents said the winning vendor:

  • Demonstrated a stronger knowledge of the solution area and business landscape
  • Provided information that was easy to consume
  • Provided higher quality content
     

Other responses addressed website content specifically, with respondents rating the following as very important:

  • Relevant content that speaks directly to the participant’s company (rated very important by 76% of respondents)
  • Easy access to pricing and competitive information (67%)
  • Content that directly addresses industry needs (66%)
  • Easy access to content (64%)
  • Case studies, product data sheets and other vendor-focused content (62%)
  • White papers and other research (56%)
     

The Take Away

Demand Gen Report’s John Dering summed up the findings this way:

“We can’t just put up a generic website and expect people to get a good experience or expect it to help drive engagement for sales.

“We really have to be focused on that customer experience and how we deliver the best experience, because it’s the first impression when they show up.

“If [buyers] get a bad one, there will be more friction in trying to get them to engage with sales. Making sure we can deliver what they want is critical.”


Practically Speaking

In the end, it’s pretty simple: your company’s website matters. It’s not a checkbox on your marketing to-do list to be marked off and forgotten (create website – done). It’s a living, breathing entity, the online embodiment of what your company can offer your customers.

The first step toward that goal is to be sure your website can be found on the search engines. This is comprised of two main steps:

  1. On-page SEO, including technical aspects like good title and meta description tags, as well as well-written, well-optimized content on each page.
  2. Off-page SEO, such as backlinks and additional content like regularly generated blog posts.

Step 2 is particularly important – without a continued content marketing effort, all the work in Step 1 will be for naught. As mentioned earlier, a corporate website isn’t a one-and-done affair. It’s a consistent, ongoing content marketing campaign designed specifically to gain the favorable attention of search engines and site visitors alike.


Do You Have What It Takes?

Of course, once those visitors land on your website, you need to make sure you provide the content they’re looking for, the kind of content that shows:

  • You understand their pain points.
  • You have a clear understanding of their industry.
  • You provided useful, practical solutions for typical problems within their industry.
  • You’re a reliable source of knowledge they can use in their day-to-day work environment.
     

Take a good, hard look at your website. Is it a static brochure that offers self-serving information that your company wants to provide? Or is it a dynamic resource that doesn’t just tell but demonstrates that your company can play a useful role in your customers’ business?

If you realize you’ve got some work to do, there is a whole range of options to explore, from blowing the site up and starting over to revising major portions of content to adding a blog and case study section.

Whatever you decide, seriously consider incorporating a blog into your website, if you don’t already have one. It’s a great way to easily add useful content to your website. If you have a blog, make sure you’re using it to its full potential. You should post a new piece at least once a month and focus your topics on information your prospects and customers can actually use.

Your corporate website has the potential to be a great resource for customers and prospects, as well as a great lead generator for your company. But to reach that point, you have to do the hard work of providing the information your target audience wants most.

Pilot Fish has nearly 25 years of creating effective websites and web content. Contact us today for help in reaching your target audience.