B2B Articles - May 13, 2013

How to measure B2B website performance

Not all B2B websites or businesses have the same goals, intentions or needs. Yet, all B2B websites are still portals for communicating with other humans. It is a common falsehood that B2B should have a less customer-centric focus than a B2C website. Real humans visit both types of websites, and it is the job of each type of website to communicate clearly and appropriately with their respective audiences.

B2B website design

Longer sales cycles of B2B websites provide more reason to measure conversion

direction arrowMany B2B websites and business have longer sales cycles than B2C websites. For this reason, it is even more imperative to measure conversion rate and other performance goals. All to often, business leaders of B2B businesses fail to meaningfully analyze their website traffic and define performance benchmarks. Ensuring that websites are engaging, relevant, persuasive, useful, accessible and attractive is a vital task for businesses. On top of this, analytics and conversion data can help business leaders "see" into their lead generation and sales cycles to improve processes, value-propositions and engagement tools.

The marketing and sales process, is just that... a process. It must be refined and improved over time. This is true with websites as well in their role as lead-generation and sales tools. They must be studied and tweaked for performance improvements.

Example useful metrics for B2B websites

  • Conversion rates for the overall business website. Plus conversion rates over distinct time periods.
  • Conversion rates for specific audience and traffic sources
  • Conversion rates with costs for specific marketing channels, while factoring in the human capital and other costs
  • Percentage of visits within product or service sections of a website. Using segmentation, learn more about referrers and audiences of these sections, and what happened after. Did they drop off?
  • Download metrics - What kinds of service/product resources have been downloaded? What has changed over time? Where there specific efforts that may have influenced this interest?
  • Sampled ordered - Both info sheets and samples can reveal interest in product/service categories. Analyzing the gap of initial interest and the final conversion can be very revealing and help to build insights that further priority business goals.
  • Number of new accounts, inquiries and orders, plus viewing this data by geography, time, referrer, path, visitor-type, etc.
  • Videos watched or resources explored - Videos and resources can be extremely useful for both the buying process and helping to build trust in a brand.
  • Emerging and new channels/sources as referrers - This is a vital metric that can point out new opportunities. Should a new traffic or conversion source arise, it is vital to nurture that source or test it's potential.
  • Drop-off points in the website can reveal messaging flaws or web design opportunities. Look for large and repeat sources of exiting traffic and the actions or queries that lead users to those exit points. Look for patterns, and you may find areas of improvement.
  • Applying A/B tests to landing pages to measure call-to-actions and high-level messages to drive better results.

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