67% of B2B purchasing decisions are influenced by digital, most notably, your website.
And, 37% of visitors will leave your website if it is difficult to navigate.
What does this mean for your B2B business?
It means that:
- Well-designed user experience (UX) can retain 37% more visitors in your sales pipeline
- Optimizing your website, along with other digital channels, can move 67% of your leads closer to conversion
In this article, we discuss B2B web design with Jinny Oh, founder and CEO of LA’s leading UX design agency, WANDR.
We draw on WANDR’s rich experience and expertise in B2B UX design to identify best practices, industry examples and tools.
Let’s dive in.
1. DR: Hi Jinny, let’s start with a brief overview of WANDR’s background in B2B web design.
Jinny Oh: I started WANDR in June of 2016. Since then, our team has worked with many notable clients, including World Wildlife Fund (WWF); Tenable; US Air Force; Dollar Shave Club; IBM Watson; and Freeway Insurance (Confie).
We have been ranked as the #1 UX Agency by various rating platforms and voted the top UX Design Firm by you, Design Rush, for both LA and SF areas. (Thank you! 🙌🏼)
2. DR: What are the key elements –or qualities– of good B2B web design?
JO: It is imperative to focus on why users have stopped by your website in the first place.
Do you have clear content that speaks to your customers? Does your website content draw visitors in and keep them engaged? Does it add value to them? How?
These questions define your focus. It drives your B2B web design.
Another critical, but often overlooked, feature is having clear visibility to phone numbers. You want to quickly direct users to sales reps/customer service reps.
Furthermore, a “Schedule a Demo” call-to-action (CTA) link is a MUST HAVE for any B2B web design. This converts website visitors into sales leads.
Make this CTA fun and unique with a teaser video. This way, customers know what they can expect from scheduling a demo. It also adds a human factor, establishes credibility, and increases conversions. For more on dashboard fundamentals and key elements, check out our blog post on The Best Dashboard Examples of 2019.
Lastly, transparency is the name of the game in 2020.
Make sure it is clear to potential customers that you’ve identified their problem and that your software is their solution. Clearly address how the pricing plan works, and how your product can add value to them.
3. DR: Walk us through your process: How do you approach B2B UX design?
JO: Overall, at WANDR, we believe the most important approach to B2B UX design involves data and a strong team.
- Understand clients’ goals, visions, and KPIs. We ask questions like ‘What resources do you have (or lack) that would prohibit us from implementing and/or executing your visions and goals?’
- It’s research time! We want to know who our clients’ customers are. Next, we want to understand how competitors are serving their customers and what customers have to say about competitors (what are users liking/disliking about a competitor’s service?). Finally, we identify gaps.
- Audit the existing product. Does the gap match the diagnosis of the product?
- Production time! We start building out the most optimal user journey based on the research we’ve conducted. We build the information architecture and then low fidelity wireframes.
- Usability testing using the wireframes.
- Last, but certainly not least, it’s time to implement the art direction/visual designs to bring the tested wireframes into high fidelity visual designs.
4. DR: Let’s talk UX audit: What is it and why does it matter?
JO: Ahh, the famous question!
Here’s the thing: UX is directly associated with both your top line and your bottom line.
Since UX is directly tied to your financial ROI and overall successes of your organization, it’s important to bring this to the front-line of every decision-making conversation. In fact, statistics show design-driven companies outperform S&P by 228% over ten years.
A UX audit, or usability audit, is a way for product leaders/product managers to pinpoint areas that can improve performance in their overall product.
The UX audit identifies where the friction may be occurring and why.
For a guide on how to conduct your own UX Audit, download our free e-Book we have at the bottom of our website homepage.
Think of it as a regular maintenance check for your car or your annual physical exam – it’s a way to keep your product in check.
If you are more interested in how UX audits increase sales, I wrote a blog post on this you can check out here.
Based on our expertise, conducting a UX audit quarterly helps product teams stay focused on creating the most optimal user experiences for their customers.
5. DR: What are some of the common misconceptions about B2B web design?
JO: The most common misconception I frequently hear is that B2B web design or anything B2B-related is that it’s plain and static.
At WANDR–it's our mission to break the misconception that B2B web design is boring and unappealing to the public.
We want B2B to be as fun, sexy, easy-to-use and as easy-to-understand as consumer products.
6. DR: What are some of the trends in B2B web design that you’d like gone?
JO: Hmmm, tough question.
I think the B2B web design trend of having AI chatbots is not worth the time or effort, as data shows it doesn’t work as effectively as real human interaction (through chat, email, phone, etc.) in converting users to paying customers.
This may not apply to larger organizations, which have spent time, energy and other resources to make their AI chatbot very efficient.
For instance, Time Warner has a great chatbot, which ends up lessening their number of calls to customer support.
However, other than that, I don’t see the need for them on other sites that usually ask me “What can I help you with?” – it’s more of an annoying pop up that distracts me and takes up too much space.
In summary, I think the amount of time, effort, and money many enterprises and some SaaS marketing agency put into developing chatbots is not worth the value given to the customer. Additionally, it does not end up making, or saving, the SaaS money in the long run.
7. DR: Speaking of trends, how do you ensure your clients’ websites remain relevant long-term? And what constitutes long-term in UX and UI design? How often should businesses update their web design?
We always encourage clients to do a UX audit with us once a year, if not more often (our quarterly audited clients have the best results).
In addition to identifying and fixing issues that lead to drop-offs or customer complaints, we also audit our clients’ web design for current trends.
This ensures that our clients are being proactive about keeping customers and staying ahead of competitors.
8. DR: What are some of the best examples of B2B UX design in your books? What makes them great?
(one of our own)
What I want to highlight here is the UX of their dashboard and the data visualization.
The amount of production and testing we’ve done for their data visualization is quite extensive.
We created multiple themes for the same dashboard (e.g. dark version for users who like to work late in the evening; and also the high contrast theme for users that require better accessibility).
It’s some of the best because of the extensive amount of treatments we’ve done for their data visualization.
(one of our own)
This was truly data-driven design.
We worked very closely with their head of product on their website and user onboarding – making sure everything we designed was tracked and analyzed.
In addition to the usability testing we typically conduct, we had extensive data points that guided the way that we designed the user experience.
These guys are amazing!
They really know how to onboard new users and keep current users discovering more ways to utilize their tools.
For most applications, the highest churn rate occurs right after users sign up, because users often feel overwhelmed, lost or don’t know where to begin, but these guys bridged the gap.
9. DR: Which tools does WANDR use to produce industry-leading web designs?
- Figma: If Sketch is like Microsoft Word, then Figma is like Google Docs for Design Software. It’s in real-time and it’s web-based, so everyone on your product team can be editing at the same time on the same file. It’s also great for version control.
- Airtable: This nifty tool is incredible for organization. You can customize how you want to organize it, based on whatever project or task you are facing and no matter the size (this is kind of hard to explain without seeing it for yourself, but we have found this is the best tool for project managers, organization lovers, and everyone in between).
- Zoom: We love this for clear and reliable video conference calls and recordings.
- Loom: Amazing and such an easy tool for recording your screen for feedback and tutorials/instructions. Great for onboarding and training new members of the team, or recording a group meeting, where someone from your team was not able to attend.
10. DR: Finally, what can we expect to see in B2B web design this year, trend-wise?
JO: I wrote an article on The 5 UX Trends we can expect to see in 2020 that you can check out here.
At the rate technology is moving, I predict 2020 will bring some updates in:
- Voice Over Interface
- More Focus on Customer’s Needs/Problems vs. what the company does
- 3D Design and HTML5 Animations
- Accessibility as a MUST
- Data-Based Design
- Dynamic Content Personalization
Want to give your users a memorable on-site experience? Get in touch with WANDR via [email protected] or call +1 (323) 690-7705.