SEO is invaluable for manufacturers and software providers in the AV space, especially since so much of it is easier than you’d think. Integrators commonly search for product categories and specific model numbers, and if your company includes those keywords on its website, it should be fairly simple to show up higher in Google searches.
We’ve already talked about SEO writing tips that will expand your audience over time, but what if you’re publishing a product page, or adding information to an existing one? How can marketers make the most out of a new page on their company’s website in terms of SEO?
Before you even create the page’s content
First, make sure your website is accessible
With the creation of Core Web Vitals, Google has made it clear that user experience is an important factor in SEO rankings. Beyond keywords and backlinks, each page in a website is judged on whether it loads quickly and effectively in web browsers, says Robert Rand, Director of Partnerships, JetRails.com.
“Core Web Vitals metrics look at how long it takes for the main content on a page to load, the amount of time before users can interact with the page, and whether the content is shifting while the webpage is still loading.
“While many B2C website owners already focus heavily on user experience, search engines are looking for B2B webpages to adhere to the same standards. It’s more important than ever to be working with experienced web developers and web hosts that will help each page in your website perform optimally.”:
Otherwise, you risk having webpages that don’t rank as high as they should in search engines, and user experiences that frustrate site visitors.
Remember: Google Core Web Vitals measure both desktop and mobile performance.
Next, make sure there’s no internal disconnect
Jamie Irwin, director at Straight Up Search, says there’s a common disconnect between what people actually search for and what companies think they search for — and it’s important to set this straight before you publish any new content on your website.
“I see this all the time with my clients as they assume that their internal jargon is popularly used by their target audience. Try not to use jargon terms on your commercially important pages, as it may be unclear what they mean for a new customer unfamiliar with the industry or product.
“A few well-chosen words can produce a better user experience and more conversions. However, technical concepts should still be explained clearly in all pages of your site – just refrain from using them throughout.”
Determine if this new page really needs to exist
Irwin says it’s natural to have some repetition and duplicate content across websites, but marketers should dedicate some time into reducing the amount of duplicate content on their sites.
“Even if you have to uniquely write sentence structures. Again, it’s something I see absolutely everywhere, and is a common reason for halting SEO progress.”
Optimizing new webpage content
Quality, quality, quality!
Many websites will pay $100 for a standard piece of blog content (if they don’t write it themselves). If you’re intending to publish a valuable piece of product-agnostic, topical content, spend $350 to create a longer and more value-rich piece of content, or at least spend more time on it in-house than you might have otherwise spent. SEO is a long-term strategy, not a quick fix.
Although original content is still important, quantity and quality play equally important roles in SEO.
Better B2B keywording
One critical way for B2B companies to better optimize new pages on their website for SEO is to write the copy around keywords that businesses seeking their product or service will actually search for, says Amanda McCrea, Content Associate at Online Optimism.
“You may think that you have perfectly described your offering, but if no one is looking for it in those words, it will be harder for people to find and less likely to rank in search.
“Start with a simple description of the information the page will convey and then conduct research around what words would lead your intended audience to that information. Even without doing formal keyword research, you can try searching for related terms and see what questions Google says people also ask about that search term to get ideas.”
Remember: backlinks are just as important
Links are required for your content to rank. When your articles and pages are linked to anywhere on the internet, Google discovers them quickly.
“Internal links connect your content and offer Google a sense of your website’s structure,” says Amit Raj, Founder at The Links Guy.
“They can assist you in creating a site hierarchy, allowing you to prioritize the most important pages and post more link value than less essential pages. As a result, having an excellent internal linking strategy will boost your SEO!”
Remember to have at least one link to another page on your website, too (an internal link).
Use headings and subheadings wisely
Remember that each page should have only one Heading 1 but can have many H2s and H3s, McCrea says. To optimize these for SEO, make them long enough to give an idea of what is contained in each section and work in keywords where they make sense.
(Well-designed) sidebar menus are useful
James Rice, Head of SEO at Picked, says it is important to utilize sidebar menus so users can skip to relevant content.
“This will help improve bounce rate if users find what they’re looking for on the page quicker.”
Don’t neglect meta titles and descriptions
Although search engines can automatically generate meta titles and meta descriptions for your web pages, these are often not ideal, McCrea says.
“Write your own meta title and meta description (keeping in mind character limits) to take control of what businesses see when they find your web page in search. With an engaging (and accurate title and description), you are much more likely to get their click.”
Other B2B web design trends in 2022
Hilmon Sorey, Managing Director at ClozeLoop, says the first thing today’s marketer has to do is align on what they call the “Winning Zone.”
“There are areas where you competition should win a deal because they are truly a better solution (tough pill to swallow, I know), areas where you battle on feature, solution, or service parity — and you don’t want to invest a ton of energy here because there’s no differentiation or customer loyalty, and then there is the Winning Zone, which is where your product or service clearly outpaces the completion. This can be a set of features, benefits or value that you provide.
“The next step is to segment that Wining Zone by ideal customer profile, job-to-be-done, role, industry vertical — the traditional means of market segmentation. But the key here is to clearly understand what are the drivers that will compel each segment to purchase.
“The final step is then to attribute value to each segment so you know where you should be spending your resources.
“The beauty of flows in web design is that once you have done comprehensive market segmentation and attribution it becomes easy to create a front-end flow on either a landing page or your home page that uses the values specific to your business to allow for visitors to have a unique and highly relevant experience. A short series of questions, a calculator tool, preference trees which culminate in some kind of valuable asset or contact are proven to convert more significantly than sites that try to speak to every audience.”
David Ciccarelli, CEO of Voices, also provided a couple quick tips for better B2B website SEO:
#1. Better lead generation forms
Our lead generation form is a registration form on our website. We’ve found a 5% drop-off in form completion for each field we add. With this insight, we have eliminated all unnecessary fields for account creation. All that’s remaining is name, email and password.
What we removed was the company name and the phone number. While controversial because sales people no longer have the phone number, we have shifted the initial outreach to email and include a Calendly link inviting new users to schedule a call at a time that works for them. We also use the email domain extension to determine the company name.
The trade off is more data will result in fewer leads. On the flipside, we opted for more leads with less info – and we’ll take the steps to enrich the data and enter it into our customer relationship management system.
#2. Case studies packed with stats
As I’ve been evaluating a number of tools and software applications, I’ve found myself looking for the case studies.
The expectation is that these are more than just a brief testimonial, but rather a full-fledged case study covering the initial situation, the complication (also known as the problem) describing what wasn’t working and the solution.
To convince those skeptics, be sure to quantify the results either in real dollar terms or percentage increases to demonstrate the impact of implementing the solution.