Top 10 Takeaways from BtoB’s 10 Great Websites

Each year, marketing magazine BtoB asks a panel of Web site design and usability experts to identify 10 of the best B2B sites they can find on the Web. The magazine released this year’s picks in September, along with an accompanying article that provides valuable insights about design strategies for making B2B sites more effective for their target audience.

If you can take time to read the complete article—an overview and case studies of all the winning sites—you’ll come away with some great ideas about tactics to try to achieve specific objectives on your B2B site. But if you can’t spare the time to read it all, use the following guide to pinpoint the case studies most relevant to your situation:

Top 10 Takeaways for 2009

The recession, social media, video and other rich media all played a part in shaping B2B Web sites in 2009, according to BtoB. Here are my picks for the top 10 takeaways—some familiar, some new—from this year’s review:

Focus on helping your visitors be successful on your site

Provide clear, concise, easy-to-find product and company information

Offer multiple ways to access information to meet visitors’ needs and preferences

Engage your audience in conversation however you can; enable customer-to-customer conversations as well

Make sure the company your audience “knows” through social media is reflected in your Web site

Incorporate customer feedback and usability testing to make your site better; converse with your customers about what they want and need

Build confidence and trust throughout your site

Use rich media elements for utility rather than show

Streamline access to information; incorporate site search to help reduce the number of clicks to task completion

Design with mobile accessibility in mind