People often say first impressions are everything. That reality extends to individuals, situations and experiences that are encountered in everyday life. If a person goes to an upscale restaurant for a business meal with a client and deals with slow service and bad-tasting food, they probably won’t be very willing to return there.
Similarly, if a potential client comes to your B2B website, you can be assured he or she will consciously and unconsciously start judging everything associated with the website, whether it’s the layout, content, color scheme or something else. That’s why it’s so important for your B2B website to say the right things about your company, such as the aspects mentioned below.
You Have Paid Enough Attention to Design
A great-looking website quickly inspires confidence in clients because they believe if you have spent an adequate amount of time building a beautiful web presence, it’s likely you have exercised a similar amount of care with the other parts of your business. Take a look at the screenshot below from Social Karma, a French company that offers an audience-profiling platform that gives businesses useful insights.
As you scroll through the landing page of the site, you’ll see clear descriptions of the product’s unique selling points, plus a video and screenshots. By the time you get through all that, you’ll almost certainly want to learn more about how the company can help you specifically and have an overall favorable impression before you make contact with representatives there.
However, even before you start scrolling, several strategic design elements are already apparent, such as the pleasing turquoise-and-white color scheme and the easy-to-read font. If you can’t read French, don’t worry, because there is a language selector in the top right corner of the site.
Good design matters because it makes websites highly functional. Beyond that, well-designed websites look great so they stick in visitors’ memories and make them say, “Wow!”
Whether or Not You Have a Defined Purpose
Business clients could quickly become confused if they go to your website and can’t figure out what your company does. That’s why it’s important to immediately draw attention to associated content that explains what purpose your company has and why people should care. If site visitors are confused about what you do, they’ll also be confused about why it’s worthwhile to do business with you.
Ideally, the first text or graphic that people see when they come to your B2B website should be related to your company’s purpose. Also, make sure the “About” page is very prominent so people can click on it to learn more. If the “About” page mostly talks about how your company came to be, it may also be advantageous to have a second page titled “What We Do” or something similar.
If You Are Aiming to Be a Credible Industry Leader
It takes longer to build B2B relationships than B2C relationships because you have to win over an entire company instead of just one consumer. However, one of the ways you can gain momentum is to show how you want to lead and not just follow what successful B2B companies have done before. B2B clients want to know that by working with your company, they’ll be able to tap into something they couldn’t have otherwise.
Usually, they’re depending on you because you have intelligence or abilities they need. You can show them particular expertise by mentioning how your company has been profiled by major news sources like the BBC or CNN or talk about how representatives from your company have been invited to speak at notable conferences.
You could even have a section on your homepage that profiles why the people working at your company have measurable expertise, like the Creaform Engineering site. Look at how the first top link is solely dedicated to expertise.
After putting your mouse over it, you’ll get a drop-down section dedicated to engineering, simulation and design. After choosing one of those themes, you can look through a significant amount of information that describes why Creaform Engineering is a company of choice and has shown its expertise in numerous ways.
Your Ability to Demonstrate Consistency
Consistency is something that can be highlighted on a website in several ways, from the navigation elements to the tone of the content. It’s also a good idea to make sure any images you use on the site support the text and vice versa.
The website for LOOP Juice does that in a smart way by using text that describes how the company creates cold-pressed juices using “the outcasts of the food industry”. That concept is intriguing in itself, especially since the public’s desire for produce that looks as good as it tastes often means fruits and veggies get wasted.
The main image on the website displays the juices in an enticing way by showing how colorful they are. However, the graffiti-filled backdrop fits with the idea that the fruits really were cast aside before they were used to make juice. This is a clever way to show consistency while promoting the product and the brand’s story.
You Care About Making the Site Accessible for Mobile Devices
If you decide not to include elements of responsive design in your B2B website, that’s a risk that could lead to several bad assumptions about your website. People may think you’re out of touch with modern society since so many individuals use their phones constantly. They may also get the idea you don’t care about which devices your visitors prefer because you’re blatantly bypassing mobile device compatibility by ignoring responsive design.
If you cannot afford a site that’s built with responsive design so it looks equally fabulous on mobile devices or computers, at least think about building a mobile-friendly version of the site that people will get redirected to if they visit your site on their phones or tablets. Then, at least you’re doing what you can to reduce frustration and cater to a larger segment of potential clients.
These are just some of the things your site reveals when people visit it. Now, you should feel much more informed about what’s in your power to make your B2B company and its website stand out for all the right reasons.
Guest Blog Author: Lexie Lu
Lexie Lu is a freelance UX designer and blogger. She keeps up with the latest web design trends and always has a cup in close proximity.