The 4 Biggest Factors Determining Your B2B Site Ranking

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Lucille Barrett
Lucille Barrett
Future teen idol. Hardcore tv lover. Social media guru. Zombie aficionado. Travel scholar. Biker, shiba-inu lover, audiophile, Mad Men fan and proud pixelpusher. Working at the junction of minimalism and elegance to answer design problems with honest solutions. I'm fueled by craft beer, hip-hop and tortilla chips.


You’re busy running your business.

You’ve got a ton of things to do each and every day. You know you need to work on your website, but something more important always keeps cropping up. Not only that, you’ve heard all these conflicting stories about what works and what can get you into trouble.

Some people tell you that backlinks are important. Then you read that Google punishes websites with an unnatural link pattern. Whatever that is.

Then you hear that Content is King. But what type of content and how do you find the time to create it anyway?

It’s no wonder you never seem to get round to making those changes.

My company, Pickaweb, works with thousands of B2B businesses, and these are concerns that we hear them raising all the time.

That’s why we conducted our own research into what separates the Best in Class B2B websites from the Industry Average.

We studied over 440 Industry Average websites and compared them to 100 Best in Class Websites in the UK to identify where the major differences existed to identify where the Best in Class was getting the advantage. We looked at five specific industries: Accounting, Training Companies, Printers, Commercial Cleaners, and Telemarketing Companies.

The 100 Best in Class websites all achieved a top three ranking (Google Three Pack) in their local town based on desktop searches in their industry (e.g., Printer Birmingham). The Industry Average was in a top-three position 25 percent of the time.

Related: The ‘F-Word’ in B2B Relationships

We looked at several common SEO Factors (both on-page, i.e., on your website, and 100 percent under your control and off-page, i.e., outside of your website, and outside of your control).

We’ve prepared an Executive Summary, but here are the headlines:

  • Best in Class use BOTH location and Industry in the page title of their home page 61 percent of the time, whereas the Industry Average was just 21 percent.
  • Best In Class has an average of 44 external websites linking to them, whereas Industry Average sites have just 17.
  • Industry Average sites have half the number of Google reviews that Best in Class has (0.4 vs. 0.93 on average).
  • Industry Average sites have less than half the number of pages than Best in Class. The figure is 48 vs. 104, respectively.

So if you are determined to get a higher ranking, then read on because here’s what you need to focus on.

1. Get the SEO basics right.

The data showed clearly that Best in Class was consistently getting the SEO basics right. That means using the right industry and location-related keywords and including them where they matter — in their websites’ meta tags.

Don’t worry too much about the jargon. What’s important is that you understand that Google is a machine, and it needs you to tell it exactly what it is you do on each and every page. The way that you achieve this is through the use of the keywords in your site.

The general term for this code is meta tags, and you see them in the first two lines of the Google search results. The first one is called the page Title, and the second one is the Meta Description.

The most important is the Page Title. Ideally, it should be between 67 to 70 characters long. Any longer, and it won’t fit in the search results, so keep an eye on this. Our research showed that Best in Class did two things consistently better than the Industry Average sites.

First, they included BOTH Industry AND Location in the Page Title. So if they are an Accountant based in Manchester, they would have “Accountant” AND “Manchester” in the Page Title Element, i.e., “Accountant in Manchester — Offering Personal and Company Tax Advice.”

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