B2B vs B2C SEO: what are the differences?


B2B vs B2C SEO: By definition, B2B (Business to Business) marketing relates to commercial activities carried out between companies ۔ B2C (Business to Consumer) marketing relates to commercial activities between companies and individuals and consumers.

This effectively indicates differences for the B2B and B2C SEO techniques used in the marketing and e-marketing approaches. Therefore in internet referencing or ” inbound marketing  ” strategies.

But first, apart from the fact that the targets are different, the main disparities are important: 

  • The B2C target is much larger in number than the B2B target,
  • In B2C, the internet is a basic shop website with pages of products in a shopping cart. While in B2B is a website storefront or institution that presents the company and its business۔
  • The decision-makers of the purchase are not the same. In B2C, the decision-maker is generally the final consumer and therefore the one who buys the product or service۔  This is not the case in B2B because there are several types of actors involved in the act of purchasing for the company۔ Users, buyers, advisers, prescribers, decision-makers, and rarely a single person makes the purchase in their company.
  • Purchase motivations: the company seeks professional expertise with which it decides to invest and is based on expected advantages. Increase in turnover, improvement in profitability, and/or productivity. The individual consumer can make his purchase on an emotional basis by seeking to fill his need, a desire or to have fun.
  • The purchasing cycles are different: in B2B, decision-making is much more complex and time-consuming. Because it is a more important decision that requires a larger budget than in B2C but also because it involves several stakeholders. While in B2C, the individual is alone and close to impulse buying.



Which SEO strategy: “brand content” or “content marketing”?

In B2C, “brand content” is preferred because it consists of communicating mainly about the brand and its products or services. This is based on the creation of attractive content centered on the brand. And also on emotional satisfaction by presenting the benefits that the consumer can derive from it.

Conversely, in B2B it is “content marketing” will be wealthy in this case. It is no longer the brand that is at the center of the content but the customer. The strategy then consists of responding to the needs of professionals and their issues. And presenting the expertise, values, or quality of the company’s services based on detailed content. The prospect expects after the contact to be followed up by a sales representative or by the marketing department.

In terms of performance indicators or “KPIs”, B2C monitoring is done on the number of visitors to the store site made to purchase. While in B2B, the purchase is not done online, he spent more time on the site, than contact requests.

Fund and form of content?

Addressing 2 different targets, it is necessary to master the “buyers personas” because to be able to fully understand the relationship and the discourse to be held with its prospects. It is essential to know their profiles, whether in B2B or B2C.

In B2C, the choice is then more often on visual content to seduce the consumer (photos, videos, podcasts, etc.). While in B2B, the content is textual and more detailed ( blog articles), as well as the use of good social networks or the vocabulary of slogans and the style used.

B2B vs B2C SEO: the importance of content

First and foremost, whether in B2B or B2C, the quantity and quality of textual content is the main task of effective natural referencing because it constitutes the first criterion of the Google search engine, which is above all an “Information sorter”. The right content e-marketing strategy remains the strategic instrument of natural referencing.

Internet users must be able to find relevant content corresponding to their request, at each stage of their purchasing decision.

Certain choices must also be taken into account, depending on the target, their designs, and their purchasing process:

  • In B2C: Unless looking only for the price, the potential customer wants to have information about the product or service that he plans to buy. And in terms of SEO referencing, it is about focusing on the visual and textual description of the product pages, the expected features or benefits, customer reviews or tests, etc. This thus allows the engine to be able to index the page product in question and therefore appear in its results.
  • In B2B, the website must present and inspire confidence in the visited company. Presentation of the activity and history, response to expressed needs, the superiority of solutions, references. The site positioned on the first page of the search engines is directly key in this process as should always respond to an expression of need that can be formulated differently in different users.

B2B vs B2C SEO: keyword selection

Here too, the approach to choosing keywords is radically different depending on the target.

Keywords in B2C:

For generic and competitive keywords, the number of responses is generally very high. This is why SEA’s commercial SEO strategy such as Google Adwords is often used. For natural referencing, the identification of keywords will be done rather than finer. More descriptive keywords with a particularity linked to the need or its satisfaction. This helps generate quality traffic with an optimal conversion rate.

These are what we call the “long tail” keywords. In addition to covering a greater number of queries and optimizing visibility on particular expressions, this also makes it possible to respond to voice search. In this case, requests are much longer (6/7 words or even a sentence) and are more oral than the keyword. It is in this context that FAQ pages have all their meaning, in B2C as in B2B and that the keywords begin to be formulated in the form of questions.

Keywords in B2B:

As the queries are more technical and more often express a specific need due to the countless niche markets. The use of technical vocabulary and business terms is obvious. Each keyword addressed must correspond to an expectation or intention clearly expressed by the Internet user (information on a problem or a need etc.), and must respond to the vision of each interlocutor (buyer, user, engineer, decision-maker…). The semantics used then make it possible to consolidate the credibility and expertise of the company.

Also, an internal network is absolutely necessary to allow the Internet user to navigate easily. And intuitively to other internal pages allowing them to complete his information.

Systematically, whether for B2C or B2B, identifying keywords involves:

  • Find the questions or issues that Internet users are asking themselves,
  • Search the queries corresponding to the targeted questions,
  • Seek the relevant word field (related keywords, derivatives, synonyms, etc.)

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B2B vs B2C SEO: net linking

Netlinking is the other arm of SEO for the development of the visibility and notoriety of a site. Because it constitutes the second essential criterion of the Google search engine based on the popularity of the site in the web community. The more the website is “mention” by others, the more it means that the company is a reference in its profession.

B2C links can be more easily and quickly obtained because of their audience. Therefore their market is larger and the “influencers” more numerous. On the other hand, B2B sites have more difficulty finding links from other sites. Because naturally, their market is more limited, even localized.

Today, link exchange techniques have been greatly reduced in favor of “guest blogging“. Which consists of publishing an article with one or more links to the website in its content on another site.

Again indicate the disproportion in the number of blogs or forums for the general public in relation to professional blogs trouble of B2B websites to obtain this type of link. On the other hand, the publication of articles of this type reinforces the notoriety and the credibility of the company. Just as the press releases spread in the press or the professional portals allow to have a complementary solution to obtain good thematic links.

Finally, several remarks:

While an active presence on mainstream social networks and/or through influencers thanks to a good social media strategy is very beneficial in B2C. Professional B2B networks tend to lose their interest (even Linkedin).

The business SEO, useful B2C (Adwords or now on Amazon), tends to stagnate (45% in recent years) and does not bring an interest in B2B. This is due to the need expressed in the request: to buy a product that you have already identified or to seek information, or advice to make your choice.

We will not repeat enough, but having the site “responsive”, fast loading times of the site pages and simple and intuitive navigation is essential and constitutes the basis of the UX, “User Experience”.

Finally, remember the “zero position” that the answer is to be placed before the first natural result of Google. In addition to being first on the desktop version, the zero position identified by Google allows it to respond vocally to a question asked by an Internet user during a voice search performed on a smartphone.

In conclusion

the digital marketing strategy has not really changed but requires constant adaptation to changes in algorithms and internet user behavior.

However, you must always work taking into account markets needs, whether you are addressing an individual or a company. The choice of keywords, suitable content, internal networking, and net linking is still relevant, the rest is just blah blah technicians who make us believe in their science.


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