In 2017, PwC described the Midlands region as the "fastest improving in the country".
Although it’s not the only reason for growth, a report by B2B marketing agency Yellowstep has given an insight into how digital marketing has inspired the growth of 40 top businesses, based on revenue.
Using a scoring matrix, the report identifies and ranks businesses based on factors such as website performance, search engine ranking, social media performance, and content marketing strategy.
Here are some of the report’s key insights that can inspire other growth-hungry B2B businesses to shape up their online marketing performance and generate more leads and sales.
87.5% of businesses had Google Analytics installed on their website
This is a positive sign and shows that many of the 40 companies are tracking and monitoring their website performance. Google Analytics enables a deep dive into certain pages and areas of your website and provides intelligent insights that can help marketers convert more strangers into customers.
While this shows that the top 40 have enabled tracking on their website, it’s not a given that they’re using it effectively, or even regularly. Google Analytics should be reviewed on a weekly basis to discover which incremental changes can be made to facilitate a better user journey, and increase lead generation.
75% was the average website performance score
As part of the report’s technical audit, website page speed, page requests, browser caching and page redirects were all tested. The majority of websites performed very well in response.
Other technical aspects included whether the website is mobile-optimised and if an SSL certificate is visible and keeping the website secure.
In a post-GDPR Europe, potential buyers are more security-conscious than ever, meaning that a website without an SSL certificate is likely to be immediately ignored. Also, it is worth bearing in mind that, according to Google, 49% of B2B researchers who use their mobile devices for product research do so while at work. So make sure you’re making it easier, not harder, for your mobile visitors.
25% was the average lead generation score
The vast majority of businesses were failing to capitalise on their website traffic to generate online leads by offering valuable and relevant content to reach their audience.
Three key tactics to ease website visitors towards conversion are the use of landing pages, contact forms, and call-to-action buttons to offer helpful resources and downloadable content
Out of the 40 businesses assessed, only 1 used landing pages to capture details from visitors and were offering more opportunity for users to convert.
0 businesses scored top marks for their content strategy
Within the full report, none of the businesses scored top marks for their content strategy against the scoring criteria.
What this tells us is that many of the Midlands’ growing businesses are under-using their blog and
news article sections of the website to generate organic website traffic and talk to their audience’s needs and queries. Hubspot research also shows that B2B companies that blog 11+ times per month generate almost 3X more traffic than those blogging 0-1 times per month.
When creating a content strategy, ensure you’ve considered each stage of the buyer journey, as seen below.
Awareness stage: the buyer realises they have an issue and seeks answers, resources, insights or data to address it. Examples include ebooks, cheat sheets, or how-to blogs.
Consideration: content that demonstrates you as a potential solution to their issue, for those that are doing heavier research on if your service is a good fit. Examples include product webinars or case study packs.
Decision: when the buyer has done plenty of research and is ready to become a customer. Examples include free demos, trials, quotes, and consultations.
An incredible 96% of B2B buyers say they want content with more input from industry thought leaders. For B2B leaders, the space is there for your business to shine and use online marketing as a platform for growth. Take the opportunity before it disappears.
For more digital marketing tips, insights, and reports, subscribe to the Yellowstep blog today.