You know how hyped the concept of website personalization is. You’ve seen the trend pieces and the lucrative statistics (80% of customers are more likely to purchase! 93% of websites see a lift in conversions!).
But that’s for B2C (business to consumer) businesses, right? You’re not selling pet supplies or wine.
Your business is B2B (business to business), and that makes things more complicated. Doesn’t it?
B2B Website Personalization is Possible
Personalization seems a lot harder for B2B brands because the entire sales process is a lot more complicated. In many cases—and especially with high-cost products and services—you have to win over a number of different people who each have different roles and priorities within a company. When you’ve got a more complex buyer’s journey that involves a larger number of people, how is personalization supposed to work within that?
But it can. Optimizely experimented with creating personalized homepages for 26 different companies they knew they wanted to work with. The results showed how powerful B2B website personalization can be. They saw a 113% increase in conversions for their Solutions page, and a 117% increase in conversions for setting up an account.
Their case study proves that not only is B2B website personalization possible, but it’s lucrative.
How to Use Personalization on Your B2B Website
In order to start providing your visitors with personalized experiences on your website, you need to figure out a couple of main things: first, what forms of personalization you want to implement; and second, what technology you need to select to make it happen.
5 Ways to Personalize Your B2B Website
Some of the main website personalization tactics available to B2B brands are:
Tailored landing pages
Landing pages are one of the easiest parts of your website to personalize, because knowing how a person comes to the page already tells you something about what they’re looking for.
When you know what the ads, emails, or social media posts that drive people to a page say, you can make sure the page itself is tailored to match what your visitors are interested in.
One of the easier pieces of data to access about visitors is where they’re coming from, geographically speaking. For a lot of businesses, knowing whether a visitor is browsing your website from California or Spain can provide you some useful information about what kind of prospect they are.
You could personalize what they see so that the site content most closely matches the situation where they’re based—addressing any local regulations they deal with, or providing contact information for the salesperson in their area, for instance.
Relevant content suggestions
The content a visitor looks at tells you something about what they’re interested in, and may provide some useful clues about who they are. If your website has content targeting a few different audiences—say, CEOs, marketing managers, and HR representatives—then you can make an educated guess about which category a visitor falls into based on which articles they read.
Providing content suggestions based on the page a visitor is on or past pages they’ve visited gives you an opportunity to nudge visitors further along the purchasing process and keep them interacting with your brand longer. And by specifically showing them additional content that’s relevant to their interests, you make their overall experience on the website better.
Interactive chatbots give you a way to personalize a visitor’s website experience by letting the visitor directly tell you what they want to know.
A chatbot can be programmed to ask questions about what a visitor is interested in, and serve up relevant answers and/or suggested content based on how they respond. It provides B2B visitors an engaging way to find what they’re looking for more easily, and makes it easier for you to urge them toward the resources that are most valuable based on their needs.
This is the form of personalization Optimizely used in the example shared above. It requires more advanced technology than some of these other options, but when used well can be powerful.
Using reverse IP lookup technology, you can tell when a visitor’s coming from a specific location, like an office building. For businesses that do ABM (account based marketing), if the office an IP is associated with is one of your main target accounts, you can serve up a homepage made specifically to speak to that company’s situation. The visitor’s immediate perception of your website will then be one that’s all about them and their needs, which increases the likelihood that they’ll stick around and be impressed with what you have to offer.
5 Products that Power B2B Website Personalization
To make website personalization happen, you need the right technology. Here are a few of the main tech products out there powering B2B personalization:
- HubSpot – Most B2B marketers will already have some awareness of HubSpot—its content management system (CMS) is widely used and well known. Personalization is far from the only feature HubSpot offers, but the tool makes it possible to tailor the content you show to new visitors based on their location, device, or referral source. And for known visitors, you can serve up even more personalized content based on what you already know about them.
- LogicHop – For WordPress users, LogicHop is an easy-to-use tool that lets you personalize the content visitors see based on dozens of criteria. You can personalize copy, images, buttons, banners, etc. to make your webpages speak to what you know about different visitors.
- Optimizely – Optimizely’s main selling point is A/B testing, but the same technology that allows you to serve up two different versions of a page to see which one performs better can be used to serve up different versions of a page based on who’s looking at it.
- Clearbit Reveal – Clearbit Reveal is a tool that will match the IP of your website visitors to the business they’re associated with, allowing you to better provide personalized content based on the business details you have.
- Drift – Drift provides a live chatbot that powers real-time personalization through conversation. Not only do visitors get easier access to relevant answers and content, but the interactive nature of live chat means they have a more engaging experience on your website at the same time.
These aren’t the only tools on the market offering personalization features, but they’re a good place to start your search. Figure out what type of website personalization you want to offer, and let that guide your search for the technology that provides what you need.
Make it Personal
Personalization isn’t just for the consumer brands of the world. With the right technology and strategy, you can find creative ways to reach the business customers you most want to work with more directly, with messaging that’s relevant to their needs. That leads to better experiences for them, and higher conversions for you.
Machielle Thomas curates content for marketing professionals, small business owners, bloggers, and more.