Industrial marketers know that marketing a manufacturing company is significantly different from a retail or other consumer-oriented business. Manufactured products are often sold through distribution centers or as a component of another company’s products, and deals tend to be much bigger — and take a lot longer to close. Plus, a manufacturer’s technical buyers have to thoroughly vet your company and its products, possibly even requesting a demo or touring a production facility before issuing a purchase order.
As a result, marketing for manufacturers is much more about reaching the right people with the right messages at the right times. It’s rarely ever about reaching the masses. So, to be successful, most manufacturers don’t need thousands of website visitors or even hundreds of leads every month like other companies do.
Manufacturers just need the right leads, not the most leads.
When it comes to your manufacturing marketing metrics and sales performance, it’s not fair to compare your metrics to consumer e-commerce companies, software businesses, or even the retailers that may sell the products you make.
Yet, those are often the only marketing benchmarks that are widely available.
So, when Databox approached us about building a real-time, always-up-to-date benchmark group just for manufacturers, we jumped at the opportunity. And when they said that our clients and prospective clients could join it for free, we asked, “What’s the catch?” To our surprise, there was none.
They even encouraged us to share the data with you. So, below, we’re sharing benchmark data as of July 2023 and also explaining how you can easily compare your performance.
Let’s see how you stack up…
SEO Benchmarks for Manufacturing Companies
A popular (and free) tool for monitoring the success of your search engine optimization (SEO) is Google Search Console (GSC).
While GSC allows you to dig into lots of actionable details about specific keywords, pages on your site, and more, there are three high-level, really important metrics that gauge your website’s standings in Google versus other companies (and your historical performance):
Impressions. The number of times your website gets shown to a potential visitor on search engine result pages (SERPs).
Clicks. The number of times someone searches Google and sees your website in the results, then clicks it.
Click through rate (CTR). The percentage of clicks you receive, divided by the number of impressions you get.
Manufacturing Marketing Benchmark Results
According to our benchmark group, the July 2023 results in a group of ~200 manufacturing companies were:
1.65K median clicks
Here’s a chart showing the distribution of impression values across the sample:
What do the figures mean?
The height of the blue area shows the percentage of companies that have a CTR within that range. As you can see, the chart on the left curves very high as the number of impressions approaches zero, meaning lots of companies have very few impressions. In fact, 50% of the sample had between zero and 96.65K sessions, while 25% of the sample had between zero and 23.85K, an even smaller range.
The right side of the chart indicates that 25% of the companies had between 96.95K and 335.48K impressions — a much wider range. We can also see that 25% of the sample had somewhere north of 335.48K impressions, meaning there are a small number of over-performers.
In fact, one of our manufacturing clients had 1.37M impressions as shown in the chart below.
We didn’t include our client’s name, of course, since these benchmark comparisons are anonymous and private to each company.
How to Get Marketing Benchmarks for Your Company
Want to see how your own results stack up to your industry? When you join our benchmark group, Marketing Benchmarks for Industrial & Manufacturing Companies, and securely connect your GSC data, you’ll see charts like those above that turn red or green (instead of blue). Green means you’re doing better than at least 50% of the sample. The client in the above chart is doing better than 90% of companies in the group!
It’s easy to view your own results. See how you measure up to competitors by joining the group and connecting your GSC account below:
Of course, your stats will vary depending on the size of your company, how big your market is, how frequently your prospects search for products like yours, plus many other factors. So, don’t get hung up on your impressions and click numbers if you’re a smaller firm with low numbers, (and don’t get too excited if you’re a bigger one with bigger numbers).
Google Analytics 4 is the new standard for measuring marketing metrics and analytics for your website after Google officially sunset Google Analytics Universal this summer. As a result, it’s hard to find any benchmarks for GA4, let alone ones for manufacturing companies.
But you’re in luck.
Here are two charts showing the distribution of sessions and engaged sessions in July 2023 for the manufacturing companies in our sample.
The charts show that the median sessions metric for the sample was 3.6K sessions in July 2023, and the median engaged sessions metric was 2.84K. If you rank higher than those metrics, you’re doing better than at least 50% of the group.
Of course, the volume of sessions you get may be due to the size of your market as opposed to the size of your budget (or the quality of your marketing). We have some clients who don’t have this much traffic, but have strong growth. On the other hand, some clients get much more traffic than this and aren’t growing as fast. But, this gives you a good feel for how much traffic a typical manufacturing company website gets, and if you monitor the trend over time compared to your results, you’ll know if you’re falling behind the industry standards for growth.
Engagement Metrics for Manufacturers
One metric that is a great benchmark regardless of the volume of traffic is your engagement rate.
According to our survey sample, the median engagement rate for manufacturing companies is 59.32%. This means that for 50% of the companies in the sample, less than 59.32% of their website sessions are engaged.
“...an engaged session is one that lasts longer than 10 seconds, has a conversion event, or has at least 2 pageviews or screenviews.” — Google
There are a lot of ways to improve your engagement rate. Here are a few to start with:
Make sure your content is highly relevant to those who find your website through search
Keep your site navigation simple and clear
Tailor your call-to-actions (CTAs) on your website to content readers are viewing
Posted by Kelly Wilhelme Kelly Wilhelme currently manages all of Weidert Group's marketing efforts. Through her past experience as an inbound marketing consultant on our client service team and, prior to that in financial services communication, she has a deep understanding of complex businesses and a desire to help them grow. Kelly has a passion for communication strategy, layout and design, as well as writing and content creation.