SEO is SEO. Whether it is business-to-business or business-to-consumer, the goal of SEO is to be found when prospects or potential customers are searching for a product or service you offer. However, B2B is more complex because of more expensive and larger purchases, and longer sales cycles. B2C SEO requires visitors to make immediate purchases on the website. When you are interviewing a B2B SEO agency make sure they understand the difference between B2B and B2C.
What’s the difference between B2B and B2C?
Before we lay out the difference between B2B SEO and B2C SEO strategies, let’s define B2B and B2C.
B2B (business-to-business) is the process of selling products or services to other businesses. B2B transactions are more detailed and the sales process is longer. More time must be spent trying to convert a prospect to a lead to a paying customer.
B2C (business-to-consumer) is the process of selling products and services directly to consumers. B2C transactions consist of a consumer finding your website, adding a product or service to a cart, and electronically paying for the product or service.
B2C SEO Strategies
B2C SEO strategy consists of several differences compared to B2B SEO.
Buyer Personas. One important aspect of B2C is understanding buyer personas. Once you have a solid understanding of your ideal consumer, these personas can be used to guide your keyword research, on-site optimizations, and content creation.
Social Media and Customer Experience. Social media is an essential channel to leverage customer experience. Customers who experience great service with a brand via social media are more likely to recommend the brand to others.
Thought Leadership. Keep your website and social media channels updated with the latest industry trends and news, product updates and releases, and company updates. This will help drive organic traffic and position your brand as a thought leader.
B2B SEO Strategies
While there is an overlap with B2B and B2C SEO, let’s look at B2B SEO strategies.
Multiple Decision Makers. B2B purchases are larger in nature than B2C purchases, which means more decision-makers need to weigh in on the buying decisions. B2B SEO needs to be tailored to serve multiple Google search queries. To achieve this, optimize your pages for:
Answer tactical questions (“How to increase traffic with B2B SEO”)
Answer a range of manager questions (“B2B SEO best practices,” “best B2B SEO tools,” etc.)
Answer high-level questions from executives (“how to scale B2B SEO”)
Low-volume Keywords. A keyword is what someone types into a search engine (Google, Bing, or Yandex). Also known as “search term” or “search query.” The B2B industry is smaller than the B2C industry. Focus your B2B SEO efforts on high-value, very low-volume keywords.
A B2B SEO strategist needs to spend more time researching and grouping related keywords into topics that focus on precise information that translates into sounding like an industry expert. Folks searching in the B2B space are not looking to make a purchase, initially. They are looking for information or tools they need to do their jobs.
On-page Content. In a B2B world, natural words, phrases, and language are super important. The content needs to be optimized for search engines and B2B buyers. B2B SEO strategists need to optimize content for search engines, and cover pain points convincing future buyers to work with your business.
User Intent. Providing content that meets user search intent in the buyer’s process will be essential for future conversions. B2B SEO needs to focus on the information that buyers are looking for that is appealing to the users and search engines.
Conclusion – B2B SEO vs B2C SEO
B2B SEO is more complex with a lot of nuances compared to B2C SEO; however, there are similar tactics across the two industries. Remember these three things when it comes to B2B SEO strategy:
- Researching what your market or user profile is searching for
- Creating content that satisfies their searches
- Convincing search engines that your content can satisfy their searches
Implementing the tactics above will set you apart from the competition earning organic traffic that leads to potential customers, leads, and conversions.
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