13 layout best practices for effective B2B Web sites

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There are some fantastic Web site designers and developers out there, but few who really understand how to build a B2B Web site. Effective design and look/feel is important, but there are several layout and back-end requirements that make a successful B2B Web site perform well from day one.

Here are several front-end and back-end recommendations for B2B Web sites.

Front End:

  • Use a narrow, text-based top navigation with pop-up, drop-down sub-menus
  • Use customer-centric and verticalized terms in the top nav (see box.com, Concur.com and Salesforce.com for good examples of this)
  • Focus on outcome/benefit statements in a primary above-the-fold message box (rotating panels are OK if they’re easy to change and control/reverse/etc, plus as long as you can track click rates for each panel individually to see which message or offer performs best
  • Include 2-3 calls to action above the fold and on the right bottom or right side (see Eloqua.com and Salesforce.com for good examples of this)
  • Include social buttons on the bottom right, and make them stand out (LexisNexis.com has a good example of this)
  • Below the fold, feature 3-4 modules that go deeper into specific solutions, summary of blog post headlines, of primary benefit statements (DocuSign.com has a good example of this)
  • Include a horizontal customer logo bar (prominent companies using you – DocuSign.com has a good example of this)
  • Include an extensive, text-based site map feature at the bottom of the page making it easy for visitors to navigate quickly to remaining site features (box.com, IBM.com and Concur.com have good examples of this)

Back End:

  • Google Analytics is table stakes
  • Include web visitor intelligence code from Loopfuse (free) or trial software from Optify or Hubspot so you can get better intelligence on what site visitors are doing, and where they’re from
  • If you get the Optify or Hubspot trial, consider testing their lead scoring tools and generating alerts/lead assignments when prospects do certain activities that demonstrate near-term buying interest
  • Consider Demandbase for real-time message customization based on which company or individual is visiting the page (this might be a more advanced feature to add later)

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Matt Heinz
Prolific author and nationally recognized, award-winning blogger, Matt Heinz is President and Founder of Heinz Marketing with 20 years of marketing, business development and sales experience from a variety of organizations and industries. He is a dynamic speaker, memorable not only for his keen insight and humor, but his actionable and motivating takeaways.Matt’s career focuses on consistently delivering measurable results with greater sales, revenue growth, product success and customer loyalty.

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