Reviewed by Ben Hawkshaw-Burn
With 8.5 billion Google Search queries happening every single day, SEO is still one of the most profitable marketing channels for B2B enterprises and SMBs.
An effective search engine optimisation strategy is competitor-aware, client-centric, and adaptable. In the wake of a Google algorithm update or an aggressive competitor trying to outrank one of your pages, you want your B2B enterprise SEO strategy to be ready for whatever comes.
If your marketing team isn’t leveraging organic SEO strategies to increase brand awareness to attract your audience at all stages of the marketing funnel, keep reading to find out how to develop your own strategy for effective B2B enterprise SEO.
#1: Define Your Marketing Goals
Chances are, you can already cross this off your list, but as a B2B SaaS SEO agency, we’re surprised by how often we meet prospective clients who aren’t clear on their own branding, product/service specifics, or buyer personas.
So, if you don’t have a fully fleshed out digital marketing mandate, gather your minions at the round table and start strategising. Your marketing team needs to be super clear on the specifics before SEO even becomes relevant.
Step one: make sure you’re actually ready to invest in an SEO campaign.
#2: Know Your Audience
Keyword research can’t happen without first understanding your target audience. By knowing who’s buying your product or service, you can then begin to think about how that audience searches the internet to find it.
If you’ve completed step one, your marketing team already has a buyer persona. Now we need to colour that in with an SEO brush.
Here’s what you need to know about your audience before you move on to step three:
Collecting this important data is crucial for step number three.
#3: Do Keyword Research With Competitor Benchmarking
It’s usually at this stage where the strategy part becomes pretty clear. Finding a keyword that matches your offering is one thing, but finding a keyword that matches your offering and isn’t already ranking on page one by other competitors is another.
Don’t forget the second half of that equation. Competitor benchmarking is the only way to really understand if your SEO pages have the potential to outrank what’s already out there.
Keyword research takes some practice, but we have a ton of helpful resources to help you on your way, starting with SEO Fundamentals: Understanding Keyword Research & Strategy.
Here are our competitor-aware, customer-centric keyword research best practices and tips:
#4: Use Competitor Benchmarking in Your SEO Strategy
Speaking about competitors, your B2B SEO strategy needs to make sense within the context of the industry. And if you’ve done steps one, two, and three, you’ve already done your fair share of competitor spying.
It’s now time to analyse your competitors’ rankings. To do this, you’ll need a tool like Ahrefs to break down the SERPs. Search results also tell you a lot about what works for your target audience and what opportunities you should be taking.
Competitor analysis is helpful when it comes time to develop a content strategy and meet (and hopefully surpass) the quality of your competitors’ highest-ranking pages.
For example, in our SEO content briefs, we always include a list of the top-ranking pages for any keyword to show our writers what it is we’re up against.
#5: Develop a Content Calendar
Once you’ve established your list of highly profitable search terms, you should now create a schedule to write and publish your content. Producing quality content every month is the best technique for maintaining and improving your online visibility.
Not everything you publish needs to have an SEO focus, but you want to make sure that there’s a page for every keyword you want to rank for, and that those pages are pushed out regularly.
Top strategy tips for developing a content calendar:
#6: Optimise Existing Pages You Want to Rank in Search Engines
A successful B2B SEO plan should include on-page optimisation to ensure your current content meets a certain standard of quality and that it’s easy for Google to rank.
As you probably know, on-page optimisation is a methodical process that involves crafting high-quality, relevant content that addresses user queries (i.e. your target keywords), and strategically placing these keywords within your content.
On-page optimisation ensures that the webpage is structured in a way that is both visually appealing and easily navigable. So, if you have some of those elements on an existing page, you may only need to make a few adjustments to make a big difference.
Here are our tips for optimising your web pages:
#7: Make Your Pages Technically Sound
Technical SEO is a must-have step in your enterprise SEO game plan. It encompasses everything that has to do with the speed, mobile-friendliness, and crawlability of your website. For some agencies, a technical SEO audit also includes user experience and accessibility and is closely linked to on-page optimisation.
Your enterprise SaaS SEO agency should do an initial sitewide audit at the beginning of your project to determine the overall health of your site. If you’re not working with an SEO company, you’ll need to make sure that there aren’t any technical issues that are affecting your rankings. You can use our technical SEO checklist to audit your site.
#8: Build a Strong Backlink Network for Your B2B Website
Now that you’ve revamped your content, it’s time to start building up your company’s online authority with off-page optimisation.
Google’s ranking algorithm is largely based on backlinks, site mentions, reviews, and other signals, so building an off-page strategy will be essential to your company’s visibility.
If your B2B product is as good as you say it is, companies and individuals will naturally want to talk about it. Off-page optimisation is just helping that effort along.
Check out our guide ‘SEO Fundamentals: Understanding Off-Page Optimisation’ to refresh your knowledge.
Here are our key techniques for optimising your B2B enterprise authority:
#9: Make Sure You’re Tracking Your Progress with SEO Tools
Six months after you implement these changes, your peers and higher-ups will want a progress report. Proper tracking setup has a myriad of benefits, including:
Set up your tracking like a B2B SEO pro. Here are our recommendations and best practices for Google Analytics:
For more information on how to optimise your Google Analytics 4 setup, check out our helpful GA4 guide.
#10: Never Stop Learning & Adapting
Search engine optimisation never stops, and as an enterprise, your team will have to work every day to maintain your rankings. The best way to do that is to write content on a continual basis to take advantage of new keywords and to stay topical.
The moment you rest on your laurels is the moment another company sneaks up behind you with an innovative new way to distract your target audience.
In practical terms, always be open-minded about improving the look, content, and functionality of your website, especially in an industry that moves as quickly as yours.
Frequently Asked Questions About B2B Enterprise SEO
What is the importance of B2B keyword strategy?
The end-goal of a B2B keyword strategy is to maximise your web page’s visibility on a highly relevant Google search by your target audience. The more focused your key terms are, the more traffic you’ll get, and the less likely you’ll have to depend on ads to buy your visibility.
How can you optimise existing content for B2B SEO?
Updating your content with B2B SEO best practices requires a bit of keyword research, on-page optimisation, and technical optimisation. We recommend auditing your content by looking at which pages are getting the most traffic and engagement, or achieving the highest rate of conversion.
If your page isn’t currently ranking for a specific keyword, choose one that most closely aligns with the content and update your meta title and ensure your page follows on-page SEO best practices.
What are the differences between B2B and B2C SEO?
If the main difference between B2C and B2B is your audience, then how you target these two audiences through organic search engine optimisation will vary.
Here are other key differences:
Long buyer’s journey
Short buyer’s journey
Purchasing decision made by committee
Purchasing decisions made by individual
Content addresses various industry pain points
Content appeals to B2C buyer’s emotions
Keyword strategy is heavily informational
Keyword strategy is more transactional, commercial, and local
Key terms target a specific group
Key terms target more general population
What is the importance of the B2B marketing funnel in SEO?
Your potential customer has a long road ahead of them before they get to the point of purchase. Reaching the bottom of the sales funnel usually involves quite a lot of legwork on the part of the decision-maker and a lot of nurturing from your end. Your brand will be one of many options your lead will consider, and their final choice will be based on the information they can gather from your site.
B2B customers use case studies, blog posts, white papers, podcast episodes, press releases, etc. to inform themselves about prospective companies and to help them narrow down their search. The more aligned your SEO marketing strategy is with this long customer funnel, the more likely you’ll stay top of mind throughout the buying journey.
How can B2B companies create content that converts to leads?
To create B2B content that converts, your company needs to address the unique needs and challenges of your audience, and do it in a way that differentiates you from everyone else.
Here’s what we mean:
- Understand your audience on a deep level. You’re selling the solution, now focus on the problem. Your content should be tailored to address your customers’ various pain points.
- The target keyword and the user’s search intent should be pointing to the same content topic.
- Respect the long buyer’s journey and make sure the CTAs make sense.
- Create high-quality content at a consistent rate.
- Build your email list by offering value-added resources, such as ebooks, templates, or webinars (but make sure the customer gets as much out of this exchange as you do).
- Make it interesting. You may be selling B2B, but your customer isn’t a robot.
- Sprinkle in fun or interactive content, such as quizzes and assessments to encourage your audience to provide their data in exchange for insights.
- Follow the simple landing page formula: Clearly communicate the value proposition, use compelling CTAs, and make your form fields short and sweet to increase your chances of completion.
- Make a big deal out of customer testimonials. A trail of happy customers goes a long way in boosting your credibility.
Should I hire someone to manage my SEO efforts?
Managing your SEO is a full-time job, although it can be done in-house with your own team of experts. If you decide to bring your SEO efforts under one roof, make sure you hire enough people who can dedicate their time to monitoring your web pages, researching new keywords, updating your existing pages when necessary, and, most importantly, creating new content.
If you’re not sure whether or not it’s worth hiring an agency or bringing your SEO in-house, check out our SEO agency vs. in-house cost comparison.
What B2B marketing services does Geeky Tech offer?
Geeky Tech offers enterprise SEO and PPC services for B2B SaaS and technology companies. To learn more about our services, check out our What We Do page.