How do you ensure your marketing succeeds in engaging and converting B2B buyers? Broadly put, you’ve got to engage the RIGHT lead on the RIGHT channel with the RIGHT message. In order to do that, get out of your own head and put yourself in your prospective buyers’ shoes. How do they research their purchases? What are they looking for? How are they looking for it? What do they need before they commit to a purchase? All these considerations make up what is called the path of B2B buyers (or the buyer’s journey), and understanding it will make it easier for you to develop a marketing strategy that will increase sales.
In its simplest form, here is the process any B2B buyer goes through…
Now, let’s dive into the details section by section.
Types of Buyers & The Importance of Your Website
There are two kinds of buyers: Active Buyers and Non-Active Buyers. Active Buyers have a need or a pain point and are actively looking for solutions. Like most of us in the digital age we live in, their starting point is Google. In fact, 72% of Active Buyers search Google using basic keywords & phrases. This presents a major opportunity because if your website ranks in the top 5 organic listings, you can expect some website traffic. Non-Active Buyers are complacent or haven’t become aware that they have a need. They require sales and marketing to get in their face to attract, educate and motivate them.
For both Active or Non-Active Buyers, no matter the channel or tactic used to get their attention, 96% will visit your website first BEFORE reaching out to sales. If you never realized the importance of your website, you should now.
Outcomes of Website Visits
Once a buyer lands on your website, there are only 3 outcomes…
- The visitor will Convert — This conversion happens when that buy-ready lead reaches out to sales by phone, email or form submission. Your conversions are handed off to sales for your team to work and close the deal.
- The visitor will Kick Tires —They check out your content and learn more about your company, products and services, but they aren’t ready to talk to sales. Your tire-kickers need to be engaged and nurtured until they become buy-ready.
- The visitor will Leave — They didn’t find what they were looking for, or the timing just wasn’t right. Your visitors that left need to be marketed to again, perhaps with different messaging.
What Can You Do?
Now that you have an understanding of how today’s buyers become aware of, search for and interact with your company, it’s imperative that you take steps to optimize each touchpoint for maximum impact so you can beat your competition for sales.
- For the Active Buyers — Improve your Search Engine Optimization efforts so that your website is easily found.
- For the Non-Active Buyers — Identify the Lead-Generation Channels your buyers frequent and Create Messaging that motivates in order to elicit response.
- For Both Active and Non-Active Buyers — Improve your Website User Experience so that visitors can easily navigate, learn and stay engaged so that they eventually contact your sales team or download and share your content.
- For the Tire-Kickers — Implement an Ongoing Engagement and Nurturing Program, potentially using Marketing Automation if you have the means.
But before you start assigning tasks and implementing tactics, make sure you have the right strategic approach to align your entire marketing program. A quote that is very important to keep in mind is by Sun Tzu: “Tactics without strategy is the noise before the defeat.”
Have additional questions about the path of B2B buyers or want to learn even more? Call us at 815.431.1000 or submit this form to contact us.