I could stop there and have the world’s shortest blog post, but I love this topic so I’ll dive in deeper.
If you are a business selling to a consumer, there is not really a debate that you need to have professionally appearing websites, social media, packaging, and sales materials, and they all need to be consistent. Heck, we’ve dedicated numerous blog posts around this very topic. And usually, the argument is that consumers are going to judge you quickly and have A LOT of options to choose from. So consumer-facing businesses invest in building a beautiful website that explains their product, showcases their services in easily-digestible ways, and creates content to engage with their audience in order to build long-lasting relationships.
Yet for some reason, when it comes to businesses that sell to other businesses, many of these basic design principles get thrown out the window. And honestly, it makes zero sense.
Whether your business sells to ‘consumers’ or to other ‘businesses’ we are all selling to people. Your customers' priorities, expectations, and sales cycles might be different, but your branding and messaging will address that.
As a b2b business, you still need to help your customer understand the problem you are solving, how you are solving it, and for whom. Business owners and decision-makers are just as busy as consumers which means you need to quickly share with them your core value props, your service offerings, and your mission. Additionally, you want to ensure your sales presentation and marketing materials reinforce your brand and quickly address your customers' questions.
We regularly remind clients that most website visitors do not read paragraphs, they skim headers. The same is true when you share marketing and sales materials, especially early on in the sales process.
Create simple and clean presentations with strong, concise headers and brief descriptions. The presentation should act as a guide for you and a reference for your customer. Use graphs and graphics to help break up large segments of text and provide additional context.
At the end of the day, people are still going to be the ones using your service. This means that building a user-friendly interface whether that is a website, brochure, dashboard, app, you name it, will always be a good business decision. Just because it’s been acceptable for b2b businesses to have ugly, unapproachable websites and brands does not mean it should be the standard. Stand with us again ugly, undigestable design.
Ready to stand against unapproachable design? Schedule a discovery meeting or contact us at email@example.com.
About The Author
Olivia Wisden is the Founder + CEO of UnderBelly Creative. She has worked with dozens of brands over the years ranging from city initiatives to product launches and beyond. When she’s not fan-girling over the design team’s illustrations she can probably be found reading a novel or attending a boxing class.