B2B Lead generation efforts succeed only when the rate of lead conversion is more than expected. This is possible only when a marketer’s lead management program takes into account the intent expressed by a Lead in the different phases of decision making. Consciously or unconsciously, every visitor to the marketer’s website leaves behind a set of clues, which can convey a lot of information on the Lead and his intentions.

Visitor Type
Enterprise buying decisions are taken by multiple people. Hence, to understand the stage of the decision making process an enterprise buyer is in, it is important to understand the roles of different people who participate in the decision making process. Enterprise visitors on any B2B website can be broadly divided into three types: the early researcher (research analysts, managers etc.), the influencers (Senior managers, Directors) and the decision makers (Vice Presidents, C-level executives). By looking at the kind of content researched and the time spent on the site the marketer can understand the role of the visitors in decision making process and the stage of decision making their company could be in.

Buying Cycle
All B2B buyers go through an elaborate buying cycle, before they ultimately purchase a product or service. Multiple visits from an enterprise, showcasing an interest in different types of content on a website can indicate the phase of the buying cycle the company is in. The different phases of a typical B2B buying cycle are: research, awareness, evaluation and purchase. Understanding the phase of decision making a visitor lies in is important because it can help the marketer plan for timely nurturing, engagement and sales pitching.

Lead Intent
While browsing a website, enterprise visitors usually spend more time on content and information that closely meets their intent. For example: 
  • In the research stage,  a person would spend time getting an overview of what the company is into, what are the solutions they offer, people behind the company, news coverage’s, customer testimonials etc.
  • In the awareness stage, they spend more time understanding the product by reading things like whitepapers or user guides
  • In the evaluation stage, buyers look for options such as free-trials, price lists, feature comparison charts 
  • In the purchase stage, prospective buyers interact with the sales representatives of the company and finding out about any discounts, offers, closure and delivery details.

Analyzing the time spent by a visitor on different types of content on the website demonstrates how serious the buyer is and helps the marketer pursue the L emanagement ore proactively.

By correlating all the factors above, marketers can easily understand the ‘Lead Type’ of the visitors and the stage of decision making they are in. Based on this analysis marketers can decide on the next plan of action- whether to wait for the lead management to return and perform more activities on the website which shows their seriousness to purchase or, if they are already at the later stage of decision making by initiating contact and furthering the lead nurturing process. Also, analyzing leads and their behavior on the corporate site can help re-evaluate the website and make it more intuitive for visitors. It would be best to group information searched by different Lead types in one place or by leading a visitor through different stages of information in such a way that it helps them progress to the next stage of the buying cycle.

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