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How to Build a Perfect B2B Product Page
Meghan Keaney Anderson / HubSpot / September 9, 2013
There are a number of good resources out there on how to build effective ecommerce product pages. These product pages tend to be short, highly visual, and optimized for quick purchases — a style that matches the typical behavior of a B2C consumer.
B2B purchase decisions, on the other hand, tend to take a bit longer. Whether the buyer is signing up for a service or product, B2B purchases often require more information, research time, and ultimately more decision-makers than a typical consumer purchase. Good B2B product pages reflect the distinct way that these purchases are made, and should be designed differently than B2C pages. Here’s how to do it.
1) Research how visitors consume your product pages.
We’ve done a fair amount of user testing to see how visitors navigate our website and consume content on it. In each experiment, we invite a range of individuals to explore the site and ask them questions intermittently to determine why they made the decisions they do. When we user-test the website, we are typically trying to ascertain a few distinct things:
- Do users understand that HubSpot sells marketing software?
- Where do users go to gather information about HubSpot?
- What information is missing for users to make an informed decision about the HubSpot software?
- Can users define what HubSpot does after exploring the website?
Recently, our team asked visitors to examine the product pages of our website. We asked them what they noticed about a given product page, what they expected to be there, what they understood from the content on it, and what their next step would be. After the most recent round of testing, customer experience expert Rachel Decker tells us:
“The biggest takeaway [about the product pages] is that people need to take a while to get to know us. Each of these people had known about us for at least a year and have had a relationship with our marketing materials and social media accounts … It’s not easy to understand what we do, even after we’ve had that relationship for a while. The product pages need to nurture and recognize that relationship and process.”
Today’s buyer is self driven. CEB estimates that nearly 60% of the buyer’s journey is complete before they ever talk to a salesperson. That means the product page has to do a lot of the heavy lifting when it comes to satisfying the questions a prospective customer has before they contact your company. Our testing has found that prospects use a combination of product pages, ebooks, case studies, and pricing info — as well as a plethora of information off the site to prepare for a sales call. On the product page they’re trying to discover:
- What are you selling?
- Why will it make my life better?
- What makes it different from other products/services?
- Can I afford it?
- How does it work?
- How do I know it’s good?
- Who else uses it?
That’s a tall order for any one page to address, but here are a collection of components that will help you get there.