We have talked at length about the reasons too many B2B companies businesses learn to live with average websites, and about the change of thought & approach that can help you lay the foundation for a sales-oriented website. But all that is just ideas – castles in the air.
The real test is giving a concrete shape to your ideas and turning them into reality. We were helping a mid-size enterprise to revamp its online persona and online marketing strategy, and we discovered the six essential steps you need to take in order to transform your website into a powerful marketing machine.
1. Content- and Concept-driven Web Design
For this, we
- Mapped the buyer journey
- Identified the end customer’s needs and triggers
- Set up B2B funnels for specific sets of buyers
- Identified ideal length of copy and tone of voice
- Listed sales & marketing requirements, methods and expectations
- Recognized relevant offers and other CTAs for boosting conversion
By walking the extra mile, we were able to get complete clarity on who our client’s target audience was, who the client wanted to target in future, and what the customers were most likely to look for. Next, we
- Designed & tested templates for landing pages
- Set up & implemented UI-UX guidelines
- Designed sets of CTA buttons and banners
- Used animations and stunning graphics relevant to subject at hand
We also designed a mobile version of the website, plus a mobile application, which made the process a lot more challenging.
2. Development Process: Breathing Life in the Design
Revamping a large and complex website required
Our client planned to increase content production and website updates substantially, and for this a more efficient CMS was required. After consulting with the end users, we found out the expected frequency and quantity of content uploading. Our team also identified bottlenecks, and listed new features that were required to make things work. Finally, we chose to upgrade to a better version of the existing CMS which fulfilled most of the needs; for satisfying the rest, we relied on custom development.
Owing the scale and complexity of the development tasks, we followed an incremental approach and created:
- New Structure Plans
- Features Plans
- Migration Plans
- Integration Plans
This was followed by sprints:
- Client Validation
- HTML Development
- CMS Implantation
- Staging Ecosystem
- QA Phase
- Client Validation
- Final Approval
3. Quality Assurance: Testing to Perfection
By incorporating testing at every phase, we were able to weed out all major errors at the root. Added to this, the fact that we had a strong foundation in terms of clear concepts, content and business-driven design made it possible for us to minimize errors.
Our QAs worked closely with designers and HTML developers to eliminate any problems in the initial stages. To ensure that every part of the website worked as per the expectations of the end users and the admin staff, we carried out the following:
- Functional Testing
- Performance Testing
- Cross Browser and Cross Platform Testing
- UX Testing
- Load Testing
Owing to the vast number of pages, elements and functionalities that need to be tested while revamping a website, the process is rather daunting. Notably, we were able to reduce time investment in testing by writing and running Automation Scripts using Selenium and TestingWhiz.
4. Website Optimization: Going the Extra Mile
Like testing, website optimization is a process the goes hand-in-hand with design and development. Along with the smooth and seamless functioning of the website, the speed at which it loads is another prominent aspect that we focused on during the optimizing process.
In order to ensure quick loading, we took the following steps:
- Optimized images
- Standardized and optimized
- Reduced requests
- Minified scripts
- Deployed Amazon Cloud Content Delivery Network
Using Amazon CloudFront CDN (after analyzing other options) enabled us to speed up page loading, but it also created its own set of new challenges.
5. Empowering End Users: Faster and Easier Management
One of the crucial expectations from the project was reducing the man-hours and speeding up website update process. This meant a huge change in how the client’s teams worked. Working closely with the end users and other stakeholders and by making it easier to make changes on the website, we helped the client train users to tackle a wide range of tasks easily:
- Updating content – web pages and blogs
- Updating design element – CTAs, banner and other sections
This was made possible by identifying areas in the initial version of the website that caused most problems to end users. Also, by engaging the end users from different departments in decision-making for new features and functionalities, we were able to reduce resistance from users, ensuring co-operation and support.
6. BI, Reporting and Predictive Analytics: Repeating Success
In order to help our client improve customer retention,
We are now in the process of implementing predictive analytics that will help build better customer profiles, assign priority for sales leads and predict what a certain client is most likely to buy. In the next stage, the solution can help serve personalized content – included tailored marketing offers – to known customers.
Where to go from here?
We are sure that some of the ideas outlined in this article will help you build a better B2B website – whether you sell services, products or solutions.
If you want more information or need assistance, please feel free to Get in Touch with Us.