Can you use a growth mindset to increase your B2B leads? Most marketers will talk about conversion rate optimisation (CRO) as a strategy designed for e-commerce websites. Traditionally, CRO involves all the tactics and techniques employed by a company to increase either the sales volume or the revenue per visitor by refining the design of their pages or their communication strategy. However, quantity doesn’t always equal quality and not every business model is focused on direct sales through a website. Can we apply CRO strategies to B2B websites to improve lead generation? The answer is yes, and in this article, we’ll guide through the most effective solutions to reach and attract potential clients to start building long-lasting business-to-business relationships.
The goals of B2B companies usually differ from those of e-commerce sites selling individual products to private consumers. A business website tends to be designed not for the immediate sale, but rather to present a service and build trust to connect with other businesses ready to start a long-term collaboration. Lead generation, therefore, is the first essential step toward signing a contract, and by optimising your B2B website, it is possible to increase your contact list and find better clients.
What is B2B lead generation?
When we talk about B2B leads, we refer to a set of marketing actions oriented toward the acquisition of contacts interested in your service or product. A qualified lead is a potential customer who has come into contact with your company and has chosen to give their contact information.
A B2B lead generation strategy can include online and offline advertising, word of mouth, cold calling, trade fairs, and networking through public events. The advantage of adopting an online lead generation strategy is that both costs and results can be measured by analysing the data, allowing you to maximise the conversion rate by optimising each step of the process over time.
What are the best tools to generate more B2B leads?
To achieve positive results with a B2B leads campaign, you’ll need to know how and where to find new clients. Optimising your strategy often means experimenting with different tools, and depending on your budget, you can invest in various areas of your marketing to attract other businesses.
CRO tools range from free to extremely expensive, and they are designed to help you with A/B testing, search engine positioning, content marketing via social media, email marketing, and so on. As we’ll see in the next section, software like Google Optimize allows you to compare different versions of your website to see which performs best. In contrast, Hootsuite and Mailchimp allow you to refine your communication via social media and newsletters. Hotjar lets you visualise how users behave on your website and address design flaws that stop visitors from getting in touch, and SEMRush or Ahrefs can fulfil all your SEO needs.
As you’ve probably guessed, a lead generation strategy can take many forms and tools, but whatever method you choose to invest in, optimisation can only function through data analysis. This is where CRO comes into play: to understand what channel performs best and how to intercept more interested clients, you have to understand traffic and behavioural data and split your resources based on results.
A/B testing for B2B lead generation
A standard procedure to optimise the performance of your website’s conversions is through A/B testing. A/B testing was first introduced by tech giants such as Amazon or Booking.com and it is usually employed by e-commerce sites with large traffic volumes to check how the design or copy of a page affects users’ behaviour. Classic examples of A/B testing used by e-commerce sites involve changing the colour buttons or the wording of a call to action (CTA) to see how visitors respond. This, however, only makes sense when a website has a massive traffic flow as variations usually occur in small percentages.
Business websites looking to increase their B2B leads should approach A/B testing differently. They should compare versions of a website that differ on a macro level, rather than a micro level. What does this mean? This means checking on how the tone of voice resonates with readers, how images communicate the company’s mission, and how the general feel of the brands impacts the visitors’ willingness to subscribe or get in touch.
Google Optimize is a great starter’s tool to split the incoming traffic into two streams and observe how each group reacts. Optimizely and VWO offer professional A/B testing systems and B2B lead generation services, but they come at a high price and may not be necessary for a B2B website looking to build trust.
Landing Page Optimization
The landing page is the first page a user sees when clicking on a link. People can be directed to landing pages through organic backlinks, paid social media ads, or search engines and it’s essential to give the best possible impression, especially to users who come across your brand for the first time.
The first question to ask when optimising a landing page is: what do you want to achieve with this page? Do you want visitors to subscribe to a newsletter? Or download a file with information about your service? Or simply offer a solution to a client’s issue? B2B leads can be attracted in many different ways.
Depending on your objective, you can test different ways of improving your landing page’s conversion rate. It all starts, obviously, from a compelling title, the first thing a reader sees. You should be clear in your message and try to guide the visitor to a single call to action. Test long or short copy, professional or friendly tone of voice, positive images or product photography and see how users react.
A great tool to understand people’s behaviour on your landing page is Hotjar, which creates a heatmap of your site based on where users move their cursor, where they click, and which elements attract their attention. Hotjar will allow you to eliminate distractions and keep your audience focused on your message.
Add a lead magnet to attract more B2B leads
Sure, a convincing copy is essential to get new visitors to leave their email on your site, but nothing is more effective than a well-designed lead magnet. What is a lead magnet? Quite simply any incentive you offer a potential buyer in exchange for their contact information. It can be an ebook, a whitepaper, an excel sheet template to create a business model or a case study to show how your services work. Adding a lead magnet to your CTA will increase the likelihood of a user filling in the form, plus it will allow you to promote your services and offer a clear image of what you have to offer.
Use newsletters for lead nurturing
As we’ve mentioned, B2B relationships are usually not focused on quick transactions and a significant number of customers that come and go. Instead, they rely on long-term relationships and recurring clients. This is why a B2B lead generation strategy shouldn’t only focus on capturing emails, but also on maintaining relations alive and keeping potential clients interested in what you do. Newsletters are a great way to talk about your services to people and businesses in your contact list.
Lead nurturing is important for building trust over time and for B2B companies, sending out regular newsletters to inform contacts about new services, events, and even operations, shows transparency, honesty, and improve brand awareness. A newsletter doesn’t have to be a sales letter: an update, business suggestion, or a curated reading list can be enough to remind a client that you are available in case of need.
Make use of reviews, social proof case studies
Data shows that people who intend to buy a product or service, especially if it’s expensive, rely heavily on reviews to make their final decisions. If you operate in a competitive market, reviews can make or break a deal.
Invite your previous customers to give you detailed feedback on your work and ask for permission to publish it. Reviews can be added to landing pages, product pages, or included in sales letters. They are easy enough to obtain when you know your customers have reached their goals by working with you. Social proof is a powerful way to convince unsure visitors to trust you. On top of clients’ reviews, make sure to include any press mentions in your about page.
Similarly, case studies increase your perceived authority in your field of expertise and allow people who may not be familiar with the technical aspects of your services to visualise and understand what they can expect from starting a collaboration. Let the data speak for itself and use case studies as a portfolio to attract qualified leads.
The design of your website should be at the core of your B2B leads strategy. Without a responsive landing page, a large part of your website’s visitors won’t even reach the call to action. At least one-third of internet users now navigate with a mobile device, and this number can only be expected to grow. This, of course, includes your future customers, and that’s why optimisation should always take into account how pages are seen on small screens.
How to generate more B2B leads? Some final words
It can be overwhelming to approach B2B leads strategies, as so many opportunities are available out there to make your brand known and attract new clients toward your business. It is crucial to decide what channel you should focus on, how to divide your marketing budget, and how to keep potential clients engaged.
Applying a CRO mindset on lead generation can help you achieve your goals faster and more effectively. A data-driven growth strategy will allow you to continuously test, improve, and implement new solutions, ultimately finding the perfect way to build a list of receptive contacts to discuss your products or services with. Got more questions about lead generation strategies? Get in touch; we’re here to listen!