How to get leads for $5 in a complex and highly competitive B2B sector

In this case study, we are talking about marketing strategy optimization, where we are proving with a real example why analytics and development of additional growth areas are so important.

What we had:

  • Site:
  • Business sector: manufacturing equipment from China
  • The target audience: Russian-speaking clients from Russia and the CIS
  • Goal: drive quality leads using a very limited budget

What we achieved

Dozens of leads per month in the highly competitive market and a budget much lower than their competitors'.


1. Market features

2. The main problems at the start

3. What we started with

4. How we improved our advertising strategy

5. What we achieved

6. To sum up


 Market features

When promoting a B2B website, you have to consider the following facts:

  • The target audience includes only legal entities;
  • Plenty of competing companies including micro-plants from Asia as well as European big companies;
  • Large advertising expenses. Spending over $10 on just one click is a common thing in this sector. Monthly budgets may reach up to $40,000;
  • Creating web content is rather challenging as the products are technically complicated and targeted at people who specialise in them;
  • High prices of products and lack of precise prices (due to the exchange rate and the fact that prices may vary depending on the technical specifications);
  • Period between the first visit to the website and the actual purchase is quite long.

 The main problems at the start

А) Strong competition in search paid advertising. High entry threshold due to overheated auctions. Target keyword queries are used to advertise companies from other business sectors. For example, customs brokers and companies offering shipping services.

Google search results for the query «станки из китая цена»

Image 1. Not only do we have to overtake direct competitors but also indirect ones, which impact the auction process and boost the ad bids.

B) Complex semantics. Multi-word keyword queries. For example, "профилегибочная линия для профнастила Китай/ profile bending machine for profiled sheeting China". Almost all products have their own product ID, codes, numbers. There are many similar competitors' products with their own names and numeral elements. All of these factors increase the number of keywords. However, these keywords are not frequently used which makes them less useful when advertising.

 What we started with

At first, our ad campaigns could not provide a sufficient number of traffic. The reasons are: keyword query specifics, user behavior and limited budget. We focused on search adverts where it was quite difficult to compete with the market leading businesses.

Key performance indicators for the first month

Image 2. Key performance indicators for the first month.

When assessing the first month of work, it is important to take into account the special features of the B2B market. A person who is buying is very often not the person is going to use the purchased products. For example, the customer is the engineering department and the procurement will be done by the procurement department. In addition, as the price of the equipment is rather high and may vary greatly, the procurement specialists study offers very carefully. All these factors make the sale process rather complicated.

That is why 30 days is to early to assess efficiency of ad campaigns. If to take a 90-day statistics, you can see that 66% of goals are usually made within the first day when a user comes to the website and the rest of goals may be achieved within three months. So, the more complicated the product is, the more time it takes to make a decision.

As a result, the first month may seem weak, but it doesn't reveal the whole picture.

First visit and actual purchase statistics

Image 3. First visit and actual purchase statistics.


 How we improved our advertising strategy

In this case, we used the following idea. Search adverts usually bring the most quality leads. But you should take into account the semantic specifics: high price, quite narrow target audience, low frequency of priority keywords. And high-frequency keywords are mainly used by students and specialists who are looking for technical documentation or guides. So, it is better to focus on another type of advertising.

The point is that it is almost impossible to avoid non-target clicks, even if the text says that the company sells manufacturing equipment. So, in this case, network advertising helps to reduce this negative impact thanks to its low price.

And as a result, in order to cover more users, we decided to reconsider the budget and launch additional advertising campaigns on Yandex and Google networks as well as other platforms.

This strategy turned out to be quite successful. With the same budget, we managed to increase the number of quality target traffic by almost three times and the number of completed commercial goals (leaving contact details or ordering a consultation) by 2.5 times.

Paid ad key performance indicators with the new strategy

Image 4. Paid ad key performance indicators with the new strategy.

The additional web platforms included:,, As these platforms do not show the same ads throughout Russia, we had to launch ads for each city. To make it more efficient, we studied ad statistics and chose the most active cities. So, the cost of posting ads on Avito varied from 600 to 1200 rubles per 10 products depending on the city.

Selecting cities using advertising statistics

Image 5. Selecting cities using advertising statistics.

Overall, the platforms proved to be effective and brought quality leads. The only problem that may occur is choosing the right cities. Since the demand itself is not that high and the platforms are visited by only some percentage of the target audience, the interest to the offered products is burning out quite quickly and it takes some time to update the ads. That is why you need to update the location where ads are displayed.

However, up-to-date statistics on demand and user audience behaviour according to their location help us keep the list of cities with fresh audience updated.

 What we achieved

  • The minimum cost of the target lead coming via ads: 300 roubles during the high season;
  • During the off-season, the cost may reach 1200-2000 roubles due to the burning out audience and a decrease in demand.

 To sum up

We'd like to add that if your sales are lower than you expected them to be and advertising is not paid off, you may need to reconsider your strategy, carry out a more detailed analysis to find out new ways to boost sales. You should always bear in mind that the market is changing rapidly and approaches that worked yesterday may be a waste of time and money today.

If you have any questions, just contact us and we will be happy to help you make your business visible online.


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