Stop me if this sounds familiar.
You invested considerable time and money into your website. It looks great, it speaks to your value, and showcases your expertise—but it doesn’t generate the leads you need for growth?
Or maybe your website hasn’t had an update in several years after it failed to generate leads. Now it doesn’t do your brand justice but you are reluctant to spend the money to modernize.
Unproductive websites are common in businesses with complex sales cycles and niche customers like those in B2B.
But these disappointing outcomes are not because your customers aren’t online and searching for solutions to their problems. I assure you they are…
“80% of business decision-makers prefer to get company information in a series of articles versus an advertisement (source)”
Your website’s lack of leads is likely due to a few missing critical elements from your strategy and execution. With the right inbound marketing strategies, a lead generating website is possible in B2B industries.
To help shed some light on why your site may be underperforming, this article will run through the top 5 most frequent reasons we encounter why B2B websites don’t generate leads.
Do Websites Generate Leads for B2B Businesses?
The reality is, your customers are online and searching for solutions to their problems. Long before they call you or your sales teams find them—your potential customers have been affected by a sticky issue and are searching for insights and answers.
With the right content, keywords, and conversion strategies—you can get your brand, thoughts, and solutions in front of your potential customers. A well-executed digital marketing strategy can draw in prospects, motivate their decision-making, and convert them into leads with offerings and further insights.
Here are some of the stats to prove it:
- 93% of B2B buying processes begin with an online search (HubSpot).
- 80% of business decision-makers prefer to get company information in a series of articles versus an advertisement (Content Marketing Institute).
- 96% of B2B buyers want content with more input from industry thought leaders (Demand Gen Report)
- Millennials are 247% more likely to be influenced by blogs or social networking sites (Hubspot).
- B2B researchers do 12 searches on average prior to engaging on a specific brand’s site (Google).
- B2B companies with blogs generate 67% more leads per month on average than non-blogging firms. (Hubspot).
- 47% of buyers viewed three to five pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep (Source).
It is important to note that no amount of marketing replaces your sales team in B2B. Instead, a functional website makes your sales team more effective and equips them with valuable leads to close.
With high-quality leads from inbound marketing, your sales team will close leads more quickly and for less cost than leads from a purchased list or individual “cold open” prospecting efforts.
So Why Hasn’t My Website Been Generating The Leads I Want?
Lead generation through your website is a long-game strategy with an intricate and nuanced process that takes continuous work. For those that do it effectively, the ROI is massive.
In our experience—B2B websites that aren’t generating leads are missing a few pieces of the puzzle to make the lead engine turn over.
We also often see B2B companies with great websites that would typically generate leads for a company that had a more straightforward sales cycle or a broader audience. But B2B organizations’ complexity and niche markets require different tactics—honed to their industry, expertise, and customers.
What Is My B2B Website Missing?
I won’t dive deeply into the specifics because, as we stated, each B2B business requires a customized approach. But broadly, here are the top 5 things we see missing most often from B2B websites that prevent them from generating a steady flow of valuable leads.
1. Your B2B Website Isn’t Persona Driven
What does this mean?
Personas are generalizations of your ideal customers. When you understand who your ideal customers are, you can craft content, offerings, and conversions that speak directly to their needs in a language that resonates.
For B2B, this is critical.
You’re supposed to be the experts at helping your customers excel in their industry. If potential customers are coming to your site and can’t identify themselves or solutions to their needs quickly, they will leave.
It is a simple and often overlooked aspect of B2B marketing—but speaking to your customers directly and providing the value they are looking for is what keeps people’s interest and attention. If you’re experiencing low traffic and or conversions on your site, start here.
2. You Aren’t Engaging In B2B Thought Leadership and Blogging
I know. I know. Blogging is complicated, takes time, and is easily overlooked for more instant gratification efforts.
While it may seem abstract, generating articles and content for your website that encompasses the entire buyer journey is critical.
Content creation drives traffic and awareness, and when done well, it also helps usher prospects through the buying journey. Passive lead funnels, increased domain authority, and expanded awareness are just some of the benefits of blogging.
The most effective blogs speak to customer pain points and offer insights on how to solve problems. Well-executed linking strategies guide customers through their buying journey and into CTA’s that help convert readers into leads.
Blogging is a long-term investment and takes significant effort to do so consistently—but it pays substantial dividends when done well.
Blogs work. You are reading our blog right now, and you run a B2B business!
Take a look around our site. Follow some links, see our Call To Actions (CTAs) at the end, and see if you can spot our conversion funnels.
This blog will motivate some of our readers to reach out for insights, start a conversation, and form connections. They also support our sales team who will use our articles’ insights to nurture prospects and help motivate them to action. It’s a win-win.
A Chief Marketer report found the content most effective at moving prospects through the B2B sales funnel are articles and blogs [49%] (Chief Marketer).
3. Your B2B Website Doesn’t Have Compelling Conversions
Conversions are the secret sauce to lead generation websites.
While a simple “contact us” link enables people to get ahold of you—it doesn’t compel them. It also does nothing for the customers who aren’t yet ready to buy.
Compelling conversions address every stage of the buyer journey, are personable, and offer free value in exchange for contact information.
They range from free consultations, ebooks, webinars, downloadable resources, industry insights, trials, and demos.
Your pages (and blogs) should have a couple of conversions that speak to a specific pain point or need. In exchange for some basic contact information, and likely a phone call from an eager-to-help sales rep—prospects are given helpful insights to solve their challenges.
Sites that generate lots of leads have CTA’s that are tailored, specific, personable, and numerous.
4. Socialize Your B2B Content
Share insights, articles, and offerings on social media to engage in thought leadership.
Join groups where your customers interact and start conversations and help solve their problems. Use hashtags to expand your influence and encourage your sales teams to share your content.
Provide resources, start conversations, and expand your website’s influence and reach.
B2B is all about relationships, so get out there and make some connections.
5. Is Your B2B Website Mobile Optimized and Responsive?
The simple reality is that people are searching the internet for answers with their phones and a growing number of other devices.
If your website doesn’t look fantastic, perform well (load fast), or isn’t easy to navigate on mobile or tablet devices—it is getting passed over and forgotten. Mobile optimization and responsive design have become a requirement.
If you have not updated your website to be responsive, then a large percentage of your potential traffic and leads are merely moving on.
Over half of all Google search visits (56%) take place on a mobile device. (Statista)
Your B2B lead generation website can and should be a central component of your growth strategy. Generating high-quality and high “intent” traffic and leads takes concerted effort and time—but the value far outweighs the investment.
Think about your customers and how to offer them value on your website. Leverage your website and digital presence to attract and nurture your prospects and the leads you generate will be golden.
For more insights into how to turn your website into your hardest-working sales and marketing asset, see our lead generation website essentials.