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demandbase-lead-sources-sep-2011.JPGAlthough four in 10 (41%) B2B marketing/IT professionals say personal connections and referrals are their top lead source, corporate websites (23%) are the clear leader in online lead generation, according to [landing page] a study released in September 2011 by Demandbase. Results of the “2011 National Website Demand Generation Study” indicate the percentage of respondents citing corporate sites as their top lead source is 64% higher than the 14% citing email, the second-most-popular online lead source.

In addition, respondents cited corporate sites at a rate more than seven times the 3% who cited social media. Despite the popularity of corporate sites as a lead source, only 20% of respondents said they feel like their business leverages its corporate website to its maximum potential.

Online Sales Leads Seen Needing Improvement

demandbase-site-improvement-sep-2011.JPGWhen asked to rate how much (or if at all) five key areas of their company site need improvement, respondents were most likely generating new sales leads needed some level of improvement (94%). This was followed by building a sense of community amongst customers (92%), providing relevant product information (89%), tracking and reporting on unregistered/anonymous users (87%), and tracking and reporting on current/registered users (81%).

Although tracking/reporting on unregistered/anonymous users had a comparatively lower percentage of respondents saying it needed improvement, it had the highest rate of respondents indicating “strong” improvement is needed (18%).

6 in 10 Say Business Knows Prospects Well

In one positive sign, a combined six in 10 (61%) respondents said their company knows/understands the prospects it is selling to either well (41%) or extremely well (20%). Another 27% said their company knows/understands its prospects moderately well, meaning only a combined 12% said somewhat/barely (10%) or not well at all (2%).

8 in 10 Collect Email Addresses

Email addresses are the information field most frequently included on respondent webform/registration pages (80%), followed by company name/address (58%). No other type of information field is included by anywhere near the same percentage of respondent companies. Industry (24%) and company size (9%) are the only other individual fields with a significant inclusion percentage, while 12% include all of the above and 9% include a combined other.

In addition, the highest percentage of respondents (31%) say a typical webform on their company’s site contains five to seven fields, while 29% say a webform contains two to four fields and 21% say eight to 10. Much less common are webforms with 11 or more fields (6%), one field (4%) or no fields (8%).

ReturnPath: 8 in 10 B2B Emails Reach Inbox

Eighty percent of commercial B2B emails reach the intended inbox, while 8% wind up in a spam/junk folder and 12% are blocked by ISP-level filtering, according to data released in September 2011 by ReturnPath. ReturnPath analysis indicates this is a 5% improvement from 2009, when just 75.2% of commercial B2B emails made it to the inbox. The study advises the multiple company-level filtering methods used for business email addresses mean that deliverability is still a major concern. At the default setting, a lot of mail remains undelivered.

About the Data: Data is based on a sample of 100 B2B marketing and IT professionals, invited to participate via online promotion and e-mail with the survey administered online May 18-25, 2011 using a web survey tool.

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