The most important customer acquisitions channel is none other than SEO (Search engine optimization). It has been proven that maintaining a strong organic visibility across all stages of the buying cycle will help in improving your growth.
The Case of SEO rests. But what about pulling off a B2B SEO strategy?
Getting organic traffic for a B2B company is another challenging task. There are several differences between launching a B2B vs. a B2C business SEO strategy. So, one must understand the ways to approach the channel by knowing the difference between them.
Here we bring you a full-fledged B2B SEO guide that will give you the best practices for building your own B2B SEO strategy.
What is B2B SEO?
The term B2B SEO (Search Engine Optimization) refers to the digital marketing strategy which is specially created to help various B2B website pages rank higher in search engines. There are several search engines like Google, Bing, DuckDuckGo, etc. The main objective of B2B SEO is to acquire high-quality traffic to your website.
SEO is not something that will work overnight, it has to be performed with patience and sheer hard work. Similarly, B2B SEO doesn’t work instantly, it requires proper time and teamwork. Generally, it is said that SEO starts showing results in between 6 to 12 months. This time estimation is after you have executed search engine optimizations.
This is the sole reason behind the difficulty faced in testing an SEO strategy. Mostly, people prefer performing a whole lot of optimization at once. Due to this process, it becomes difficult to understand which activities had the biggest impact on your website.
While talking about B2B SEO, let’s not forget about the B2C SEO. Both are utterly different but have their own significance. Foremost, the aim of B2B SEO and B2C SEO is entirely different.
Talking about B2C SEO, it desires to produce website traffic that will cause immediate purchases. The scenario is a bit different in B2B SEO, here the main objective is to create awareness and generate quality leads. These leads will then turn into bright sales opportunities.
It’s quite evident that the B2B buying process is much more intricate when compared to B2C one. Hence, the final objective of B2B SEO is to work towards creating trust among the B2B buyers.
General Categories of SEO
Generally, there are three categories of SEO:
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO
- Technical SEO
On-page SEO is mostly used for making a specific page rank. It generally deals with the content that you’re offering. Due to this reason, it is also known as “Content SEO.” On-page SEO consists of various elements like user-experience, keywords, titles, and meta descriptions.
Everything that takes place on some other web pages while helping a certain page rank in search engines is known as Off-page SEO. It has several components, where links are considered to be the most important ones.
Who loves to see the BTS (Behind-the-scenes)? Technical SEO is quite similar to that, it ensures that your website is being friendly with the technology that powers search. Some words like “schema,” “AMP,” and “SSL,” will make you feel like you’re in the technical SEO region.
B2B SEO vs. B2C SEO
The key difference between B2B SEO and B2C SEO are as follows:
B2B SEO works with collective decision-makers
B2B purchases are quite important and long-term investments. Due to this, there is a need for more people to make buying decisions. People like managers and executives will address the decision with a different mindset or a different problem in their mind. So, there are higher chances of them approaching Google for different queries.
The B2B company has to optimize pages for:
Provide answers to a broad range of questions for managers (“HubSpot vs ActiveCampaign,” “email marketing best practices,” “best email marketing software,” etc.)
Provide answers to a high-level question from Executive stakeholders (“how to scale marketing teams”)
It also depends on – what you’re selling and to whom. Apart from that, you’ll also have to think about various personas. There are times when people would ask to target various personas in organic search.
B2B is dependent on low-key volumes
When compared to B2C, the space of B2B is quite smaller, which means that your SEO strategy will have to account for high-value and very low volume keywords. It can be extremely difficult to manage for people who are experienced in B2C SEO.
Suppose you’re in the market that has greater than 10,000 searches in a month, then it might be easier for you to forget about the main B2B searches happening in your industry.
When compared to B2B SEO, a quality B2C SEO can pass enough time on a blog post that is expected to bring in 30,000 organic visits every month. For getting here, there will be no need for deep keyword research. Whereas a B2B SEO is bound to spend adequate time and grouping of related keywords. These keywords are grouped into topics that can be presented as a single blog. Even after doing such hard work, you’ll only get a few hundred organic views in a month.
B2B SEO leads to less organic traffic
The B2B space is plugged with a much longer sales cycle, more stakeholders and even higher prices. Talking about B2C SEO, they have quite more volume along with lesser decision-makers. It means that visitors are more likely to convert in the B2C.
With this, make sure that you don’t create your B2B content for converting cold organic visitors into sales. There are situations where you would see some high–purchase intent searches in your industry, but all of these are once in a lifetime moment.
Mostly, people search into B2B space when they are not looking to buy anything. They’re just looking for the tools and information they need to perform their jobs. This is quite a bummer, but fortunately, it comes with a turnabout. As B2B SEO has a lesser eCommerce competition. Suppose, you decide to sell solutions to consumers, you’ll be against eCommerce biggies like Walmart, eBay, Amazon, etc.
eCommerce SEO comes up with some of the best practices. Product pages have to be optimized but quite differently than blog posts. While B2C SEO’s are making their strategies, they need to pay attention to these things.
With a longer sales cycle and higher prices, there’s lesser competition in the B2B area. It means that you’ll be competing more with content and homepages than the eCommerce product pages.
B2B SEO stresses on Leadership and Branding
As mentioned above, B2B searchers are never likely to convert in the first visit. So, B2B SEO needs to work on establishing the brand among visitor’s minds rather than getting them to make a purchase.
This means that B2B SEO is just not about your website appearing when people look for it. It’s much more about gaining your audience and making them see your website in the SERPs while they Google questions related to anything.
Steps for an effective B2B SEO strategy
If you’re writing a B2B SEO strategy for your company, we understand how difficult it is to create one. The biggest question that lies is- Where should one start?
To help you out from such a challenging situation, here we bring you a step-by-step formula for writing an SEO strategy that will captivate traffic in your market.
How to do Keyword Research
Foremost, choose a keyword that is popular and appropriate for your target audience. It is mostly measured by monitoring the monthly search volume. Remember, the keywords chosen by you should be appropriate to both your product/services and brand. Ensure to manage the competition of your target keywords. If the keyword is popular, it will have heavy competition. So, try to find the perfect balance.
Another phase of keyword research is to find your target group. Here, you’ll have to do proper keyword research and target group analysis. Take the help of several tools that are meant for keyword research or do what you feel like. The decision is completely yours.
When you’re performing B2B SEO, don’t ever forget the user or search intent. You must always keep that point in mind.
Primarily, Recognize who is your target audience or group. The most effective way to do this is – (User journey mapping and Customer analysis, etc).
Secondly, Know what is that one problem they’re looking solutions for.
Last but not least, What language are your customers using while looking out for solutions to their problems. (keywords analysis)
Ascertain the keywords you already rank for
Foremost, you need to know where you actually stand. The best way to do this is – Know what you already rank for. To get this data, you can opt for tools like Ahrefs or SEMrush.
- Start with Entering your Domain
- Select your Targeted Country
- Click Organic Research
- Export all the Keywords
Once you’re done with this process, focus on exporting your list. While you’re exporting the list, you’ll be looking for the keywords you rank for. Apart from that, you’ll get the URL along with the rankings for each keyword.
This particular list will help you know your position in the SERPs. It is utterly important to know this because you don’t want to waste your time on creating content that competes with something you already rank for.
Suppose one of your blogs is on the second page for a certain query. Now, here you’ll not have to start from the beginning. All you have to do is just optimize your content a bit.
Acquiring Keywords from Competitors
It’s a great idea to get keywords from your competitors. But the question is – HOW?
Opting for a good SEO tool that lets export all your competitors data into a spreadsheet. The best tools you can get your hands on are Google search console, SEMrush and Keyword Tool.
Fortunately, the process of getting keywords from competitors is almost similar to finding your own keywords. So, follow the process and see what your competitors are doing.
Obtain Keywords from Complementors
There are times when some players come into your space but aren’t competing with your product. The notable thing about them is their classic content which becomes a rage among people. Now, it’s essential to know what keywords they are ranking for.
Well, you must not do this for every complementor you come across. Apart from complementor, if you come across a non-complementor whose blogs are ranking, then you should find out the blogs they’re ranking for.
Uncover Top of the Funnel Topics
Once you’re done with keywords, it’s time to look for top keywords and topics. The top keywords are the ones around which you’ll create your blog. The keywords that are at the top of the funnel are highly valued.
But why so?
Foremost, people always search for keywords that are at the top of the funnel rather than the ones at the bottom.
Suppose you target only the bottom of the funnel keywords, then you’re putting a cap on the traffic you’ll be able to get from Google. The real values of SEO always come from the top of the funnel searches.
The reason behind this is that you can turn the top of the funnel searches into customers down the road. All you need is some time. People that come to your site from top of the funnel may not convert every time. But if you make them your email subscribers, then you can turn them into your customer someday.
Optimize Your Product and Services Pages
Let’s move on to optimizing the product and service pages.
If you’re looking forward to optimizing your B2B landing page, then you should opt for these three strategies as follows:
- Create Long Content
If you come across a B2B landing page, one thing you’ll notice is that these pages are really thin. Surprisingly, most of them have hardly 50 to 100 words of content. If they continue to have such thin content, then nobody can make their pages rank even in 100 years. Their content is so little that Google will not be able to understand the page.
So, we urge you to have a landing page with at least 500 to 1000 pages of content. The main reason behind this is to help Google and people to understand your content and the page. Improving your content will enhance the overall user experience of your page. Apart from that, it will also reduce your page’s bounce rate.
- Original Content is the Best
In the current times, when everyone has a website, it becomes utterly necessary to stand out from the crowd. One thing that can let you shine in this mess is – Original Content. Make sure that all of your landing pages are unique and hand-written.
Suppose, you don’t have original content on your website, then you’ll have to face duplicate content issues. Another distressing thing is that your website will not rank and will stay in the same position forever.
- Use Keywords Cleverly
Well, it may seem a bit technical, but you’ll have to add your keyword several times to your landing page. But doing it too much wouldn’t be a good idea as it might hurt your landing page.
It will be a good idea to use your keywords strategically such as:
- Always bring up your keyword in the page’s H1 title and title tag
- Ensure to have your target keyword in the URL
- Write an original meta description for boosting CTR (click-through-rate)
- Try using LSI or variations of your main keyword
- You must add your keyword in between 50 words or so
Following these steps will help you stay ahead of your competitors in the B2B SEO.
Create a Valuable B2B Blog
Haven’t we talked enough about content? Now, we’re taking it to the next level.
One of the most important parts of a B2B strategy is none other than – Blogging
A valuable blog has the potential to help your SEO in several ways. If you publish content that is of superior quality, people will undoubtedly link to it. These links will help your landing page to rank higher in the search engines.
Apart from that, a valuable B2B blog will help you and your company in establishing yourself as a helpful resource in your specific field.
Here are some hands-on tips for getting your B2B blog right.
- The Ultimate Guides
Are you still trying to find your feet in B2B content marketing? If yes, you must try working on ultimate guides.
If you’re wondering Why? – The reason is that they work amazingly well.
The sweet and simple reason of Ultimate Guides doing well is that you put everything on one page. This pattern is highly valuable for searchers who are looking for a single go-to resource.
- Shoulder Topics
Several times, B2B companies create blog posts that directly talk about what they sell. To be honest, this is one of the biggest mistakes that everyone should avoid. Writing direct blogs will lead you towards zero traffic, backlinks, and shares.
Avoid such situations by opting for Shoulder topics. The term Shoulder Topic refers to the ones that are related to your business. But, they don’t have any direct tie-up with your product.
- Select “Business Casual” Writing Style
Generally, B2B content is quite repetitive and boring too. As this is B2B, people tend to act as a professional. But, this doesn’t mean your copy can’t be fun and exciting.
We recommend you to add “Business Casual ” writing style in your emails and letters. This writing approach is professional but also a bit friendly.
Are still looking for ways to succeed in B2B SEO? Then, you must opt for Link Building.
But, most people are really confused as to how one can gain links in such a boring industry?
Here is our list of strategies to help you build links in B2B SEO.
- Partner Pages
Are you dealing with manufacturers, suppliers or any other strategic partner?
If yes, you might have the opportunity to build many links from their partner pages.
Every logo that you’ll see on the page will have a link to their partner websites. Once you come across that, all you’ll have to do is make a list of every company that you work with.
Post this, you must connect with them and ask if they have any page on their website that lists other companies that they work with.
Be generous and Ask them to add you to that page.
Opt for Digital PR
If you’re a B2B company then you shouldn’t aim at mainstream media. Rather than, you must put your PR efforts towards industry blogs and news sites.
Digital PR will definitely help improve your brand and organization’s identity. You can try posting some success stories and customer experiences to show your brand in a positive light. Today, it’s all about branding and creating brand awareness among people.
Pick Helpful Tools and Calculator
Generally, people love linking to helpful tools. But, these tools shouldn’t be difficult to use. If your tool is useful, then you’re good to go. So, ensure that your tools are easy to use for your users or customers.
Now that you’ve read so much, you might have got some idea for starting your own B2B SEO. Always remember that there would be variations to this discipline. So, you must be ready to learn and explore.
In simple words, foremost work on making a strong strategy, then pay attention to research and finally write impactful content. Doing so will help you win and also get huge organic traffic coming in.
We hope this blog on B2B strategy will help you in your business and let it flourish more and more. If you have any queries or suggestions, please feel free to write in the comments.