In this episode, Phil takes us through the crucial steps to craft a B2B website that actively fuels your sales pipeline.
He dives deep into practical tips, placing the buyer at the forefront of your decision-making process. Hear the essential elements of website structure, content creation, and user experience that lead to pipeline generation.
Fundamentals of website design for pipeline generation are all about putting your buyer at the centre of your decisions.
Making sure that you're always making it easier for them to arrive at and flow through your site into your pipeline anonymously, on their terms and easily, and taking every opportunity to, either incrementally or in big ways, remove friction from the process.
And in my mind, I always picture it as lining up sections of pipe so that buyers flow freely through it and into the pipeline.
And that mindset should inform all aspects of your approach, particularly your sitemap, the structure of the site you're going to build.
The content you're going to have and where, the website navigation in terms of what decisions you're going to make about what to present your visitor with and what to let them discover as they go through the site.
What you will do during a visitor's visit in terms of what you will gate... less, much less what you will pop up. Nothing at all in most cases.
And you're going to ultimately try to structure your content and your site so that people take a logical and intuitive journey from first arrival through content that's critical to their decision process, which might be product features, customer case studies and testimonials, pricing, and finally your bottom of the funnel conversion page.
Then make that page as effective as possible at getting buyers who are ready to express their interest raise their hand.
And the likelihood is that if you do all of that, the majority of the people that take that final step will in fact be high quality, high intent, meaning that they'll go on to become pipeline at a high rate and actually close at a high rate.
Meaning that you're generating really solid pipeline and revenue through your website. So that's the mindset to apply and that's the approach to take when building, designing, creating your new website.
Line up the pipe so that there's less friction, less things to stop buyers getting from the very first page they see to the one that matters, which is where they express their intent.
Raise their hand and ask to enter your sales process. On a lead generation website, you'll most likely have blog articles which are really effective at reaching buyers as they ask questions of search engines and bring in traffic during the research process.
If you like, you'll most likely have a lot of those, and within them you'll have calls to action that on a lead-generating website, point to landing pages. Pages where content is offered in return for conversion.
The goal being that you convert the visitor into the lead as early as possible in their process so that you can nurture them, score them, spam them.
Whereas in a demand-generating website you're going to actively forego that lead conversion moment in favour of giving buyers and visitors their anonymity and letting them make their own choices about what to consume and when.
So you may still have lots of blog articles because that's still a great way to improve your SEO as a whole, whilst also being found for some niche queries.
And you're going to bring visitors in on those blog articles and you're still going to have calls to action there.
But for the most part, those will point to ungated content that's on the topic of the post that you've got.
So a pillar piece is usually going to be more comprehensive, a broader coverage of a bigger topic, but still signposted from those blog posts as the next logical step in a research process.
And that's great because buyers can then go and see that content, consume it freely, not have to give up anonymity in order to get that information, and it can actually build the trust and the affinity that you have between buyers and your brand much more effectively than a gated PDF.
And then all of that content will exist in a structure alongside and with your main website pages, part of a holistic buyer experience and journey from niche topic at the blog end of things to high volume, high competition commercial keyword at the top of the website and your product service pages, all of which can be consumed freely and anonymously by buyers until they're ready to convert.
The simple difference between a lead-generating website and a demand-generating website
So the difference between the lead-generating website and the demand-generating website is simply the lead-generating one will be chock full of things that are aimed at getting people to convert:
- Pop up CTAs
- Slide in CTAs
- Exit intent CTAs
- CTAs pointing to landing pages in blog posts, etc.
- Ebooks and content offers promoted on service and product pages that nobody clicks
Whereas the demand generation site will be all about giving that information freely to the buyer so that they can decide when they're ready to get in contact.