Maybe you don’t believe that SEO will work for your B2B business, or maybe you have already tried SEO, and it didn’t work.
Whether you believe that SEO is only for B2C business or not, we know that 89% of B2B researchers (Think With Google) use the internet during the B2B research process.
Something else that we know: SEO fundamentals apply to both B2C and B2B, but, the SEO strategy and execution for B2C and B2B businesses are very different.
Why is SEO for B2B Different?
- B2B Ticket Prices – A typical ticket price ranges from tens of thousands to millions of dollars, versus meager B2C sales prices.
- Sales Cycles – B2B sales are considered sales, the earliest being a few weeks, ranging up to months or even years, whereas B2C could be immediate.
- Decision Makers – While 64% of the C-suite have final sign off, 81% of non-C-suiters have a say in purchase decisions(ThinkwithGoogle)
- Paint Points & Goals – B2B is more focused on ROI, KPIs and metrics (data focus) vs. emotional needs and desires that are typical of B2C sales.
With so many differences in the B2B sales cycle, it’s obvious that a different approach is needed to drive real results.
Let’s take a deeper look at the B2B SEO best practices.
1. B2B SEO requires more research compared to B2C
Your target audience could have dozens – if not hundreds – of different pain points that influence them to source your solutions.
This issue requires a much deeper understanding of buyer personas, and buyer’s journeys:
Who are they?
- demographics (age, sex, marital status, urban/suburban/rural)
- role, industry
- work history
- How do they like to communicate
How do they make their buying decisions
- Who makes decisions?
- What are their goals?
- What are their challenges?
- What are their objections?
- How do we provide solutions to their challenges?
Where do they get their news?
- What kind of publications
- What/who influences them?
The buyer persona research is going to influence the SEO keyword research and content creation.
For B2C you target generic keywords + modifiers, but, for B2B the search volumes are so low that it requires you to target audiences higher up the funnel.
You need to flesh out your buyer personas and buyer journeys with as much detail as possible, for B2C it is not as time-consuming.
2. B2B SEO requires more content
B2C businesses can drive enormous amounts of traffic with a narrow focus and a few pieces of content. For B2B content marketing, however, it’s quite the opposite; you’ll need to create a ton of content with each piece generating small amounts of traffic.
The strategy is to cast a wide net, creating many pieces of content that cover all issues of the buyer persona and are influenced by your keyword research, and buyer journeys.
3. UX and lead capturing is crucial
Having a good design and engaging content is important for B2B because the user experience of a website is increasingly becoming a major ranking factor.
Content Marketing = More Leads
Because B2B sales cycles are so much longer, you need more offers than you would for a typical B2C website.
In B2C it is common for 80% of your leads to be bottom of the funnel (BoFu), however, in B2B the percentage is flipped.
If 10% of your leads are BoFu you are lucky, most b2b companies are getting around 5% of BoFu leads (Hubspot)
So how does this tie into SEO?
Your website’s user behavior metrics directly impact your rankings. If users are visiting your website and converting on offers, it shows that you are providing valuable content and meeting the user’s search intent.
“aligning content to specific stages of the buyer’s journey yields 73% higher average conversion rates” (aberdeen)
If you do a good job on that, you can forget most other things.
B2B SEO is very different from B2C, and as such it requires a different strategy.
Thorough research on buyer personas and buyer journeys need to be completed upfront to drive your keyword research and content ideation.
Focus on creating content that speaks to more than just BoFu. Match the content to the search intent of your keywords, and have suitable offers to capture leads.
Are you looking to maximize your lead generation? Get a free consultation.
How are you implementing these 3 B2B SEO best practices?
I originally wrote this content for JumpFactor: https://www.jumpfctor.net/b2b-seo-best-practices/