Creating B2B Websites
by CF Foundry
Writing for B2B websites is a unique challenge. Every website we work with presents its own issues, but one common factor is that website visitors are demanding and in a hurry. The key to writing successful web copy comes from understanding that people don’t read websites like they do company collateral, books, newspapers and other traditional print media. B2B website usability testing studies have found that the average success rate across B2B websites was only 58%. Why? Part of the challenge is that corporate websites need to serve so many different audiences; prospects at different stages of the sales cycle; customers looking for support; other constituencies such as re sellers, press contacts, and investors. B2B websites often offer only superficial information or make finding critical information too difficult. Web copy must be intuitive, engaging and well organized to allow visitors to quickly identify the content that is tailored for them.
Avoiding B2B Website Mistakes
Anyone writing for the web should strive to avoid creating skepticism, confusion or impatience. Incomplete product information or disordered comparison charts build skepticism in customers.
B2B customers detest marketing fluff or overly hyped language. Empty terms such as “cutting-edge”, “rigorous”, and “pushing the envelope” will create distrust. Providing too much content in long strings of paragraphs creates impatience in visitors who are searching for very specific words or phrases. Eye tracking studies show that when viewing a webpage our eyes skip over prose almost entirely searching for keywords within the webpage.
Visitors aren’t looking for long blocks of copy; they want it in bite-size chunks. Usability studies have shown that very few users (16 percent) actually read the text on a web page word-for-word. Rather, the vast majority of users scanned the content looking for keywords or phrases that either contained the information they wanted or possessed some relevance to their interest.
Poorly organized copy creates impatience and confusion in visitors and defeats the purpose of the website. Knowing how to organize content and write effective bullets is helpful to developing successful web copy.