Do you remember a time when ranking number one for a keyword was a victory worth pursuing? In the past, you could create a list of keywords, write a 300-word blog post, and drive new business to your B2B company.
It’s 2019, and that’s no longer how things work.
Today there’s an entirely different search engine, and it’s essential for B2B businesses—of all types—to understand this. B2B SEO for many companies has changed, evolved, and requires a whole new skill set to get right. The past is over, so be sure to leave it behind.
If you are concerned that your strategy isn’t working as well as it should, or if you don’t have an SEO strategy at all, you’re in the right place. Keep reading to learn why SEO is so important for your B2B business and some tips to get it right.
What Does SEO for B2B Entail?
SEO is (to put it simply) the science used to get your website to show up when people use search engines. This means that when you engage in B2B SEO practices, you are reaching professionals through search engines.
There are three basic categories for SEO, which include the following things.
1. On-Page SEO
This is everything used to help a specific page rank. It mostly deals with the content you are presenting, which is why some call it “content SEO.” If you are discussing meta descriptions, titles, user experience, or keywords, you are discussing on-page SEO.
2. Off-Page SEO
This is anything that happens on another web page that helps a different, specific page rank in search engines. There are a number of elements for off-page SEO, but your links are the most important, which is why it’s the most commonly discussed factor.
3. Technical SEO
This is the “behind the scenes” stuff. It’s used to make sure your website is friendly to the technology that’s powering the search. Terms like “SSL,” “AMP,” and “schema,” means you are in the territory or technical SEO.
4. B2B SEO Requires Several Decision Makers
Because B2B purchases are a long-term, significant investment, more people need to weigh in on buying decisions. Executives, managers, and practitioners are going to approach this decision with different issues in mind—this means they are going to be searching for very different information.
This means also you have to have your pages optimized for several things, including:
- To answer tactical questions from the practitioners
- Answering high-level questions from the executives
- Answering wide-ranging questions from managers
Also, depending on what you sell (and who you are trying to sell it to), the range of personas can grow significantly. In fact, there are some business owners that target up to nine different people in organic search, and it’s possible you may need to target even more.
5. B2B SEO Utilizes Low-Volume Keywords
Each month, there are over 60,000 Google searches for the phrase “window air conditioner.” It’s popular.
However, do you know how many times people search for the phrase “HVAC automation system?” The answer: approximately 10.
B2B is smaller than B2C. This means you need to ensure your strategy accounts for these low-volume, high-value keywords.
This is challenging, especially if you have prior experience in B2C SEO. If you are in a market with keywords that garner over 10,000 searches per month, it’s easy to overlook the most crucial B2B searches in your industry.
A quality B2C SEO can spend more than 40 hours on a single blog post that results in up to 30,000 new organic search visits each month, and not much keyword research is needed.
However, for B2B SEO, much more time is needed to source and group together related keywords to topics that can be addressed using a single blog post, and even at this point, the post may only bring in a few hundred organic views every month.
While this is true, it’s still important to invest in SEO. It takes longer to get results, but it’s still an effective process.
The Business Case for SEO
Organic search is a massive part of any modern-day B2B customer journey. It’s difficult to deny that SEO is crucial when up to 71 percent of B2B researchers begin their journey with a generic Google search.
Google has stated that most B2B researchers perform at least 12 searches (on average) before they engage with a certain brand’s website. If your website isn’t seen in these searchers, the brand isn’t going to be a possible candidate in the customer’s decision process.
How B2B SEO and B2C SEO Differ
SEO is SEO. Regardless of if your goal is to reach businesses, customers, or if you are just trying to get someone to read your thoughts, the same principle applies:
- Discover what people are searching for
- Create something to satisfy that search
- Convince Google it was created to satisfy them
It’s a good idea to do this again and again with B2B SEO. However, because of the way that marketing works in the realm of B2B, you can expect several particularities in B2B SEO that aren’t present in other spaces.
SEO for B2B Businesses
When it comes to SEO for B2B businesses, there are more than a few factors that have to be considered. Getting to know why it is important and how to make the most of it is the best way to ensure your marketing efforts are successful.
If you need help with your SEO campaign for your B2B company, contact us. We can help you get the results you need.