3 Trends Transforming B2B Sales
Big changes are happening with B2B buyers. They are acting like B2C buyers. They want an Amazon-like buying experience, and they aren’t afraid to walk away from a purchase if they don’t get it.
According to McKinsey, B2B buyers want:
- Remote interactions
- Personalized experiences
- 24×7 access
Traditional B2B selling practices are no longer effective with today’s digital buyers. If companies in that space want to compete, their sales teams need to take a hard look at their systems and processes. What must change? How can they help their sellers reach and influence decision-makers?
The 3 Cs of B2B Sales: Convenience, Customization, and Comprehensive
Three trends are transforming seller and buyer interactions as we know it. While change can be unnerving and difficult, these trends are creating opportunities for B2B organizations. If sales teams can adjust their processes to meet buyer needs and expectations, they will outsell and outperform their competitors.
Convenient Selling & Buying
Both B2B sellers and buyers want convenience in an increasingly virtual world. They want a single point of access for information. Without it, they experience confusion rather than efficiency.
Buyers want to navigate the sales journey on their own, gathering product information and data and reaching out to a vendor when they’re ready to proceed further. The faster they can access information, the sooner they are ready to move forward.
Sellers want something similar: easy access to content in their moment of need. When a buyer asks for something, your sellers must be able to quickly provide it.
Opportunity: 64% of surveyed customers cannot tell the difference between one B2B brand’s digital experience and another’s. This is an opportunity for sales teams to stand out by delivering a relevant and convenient experience for their buyers by curating the right content.
Challenge: 76% of customers report doing nothing different after engaging suppliers through digital means. This shows organizations are not differentiating their sales process meaningfully enough to make an impact on the purchase decision.
Enablement Impact: Sellers must be able to stand out by making the sales process more convenient and their interactions more relevant for buyers. This starts by curating the right content to influence the best conversations between sellers and buyers.
Customized Selling & Buying Experiences
Both B2B sellers and buyers prefer highly customized experiences and content, influenced by digital interactions in their personal lives (aka Amazon). Experiences that adapt to the moment of need increase seller and buyer engagement, compared with one-size-fits all approaches.
With buyers doing most of the product and company research before talking with a sales rep, conversations with the seller must be specific to their industry, role, and challenges. So, sellers need fast, easy access to that type of customized content.
Opportunity: According to McKinsey, 89% of organizations agree that the need to personalize experiences and content is driving sales and marketing teams to work more closely together. Organizations that can enable this collaboration will see a bigger impact on revenue.
Challenge: 57% of organizations report that sellers still ignore content created by marketing, showing a disconnect still exists.
Enablement Impact: Sellers must be able to access the right learning and sales content to support a highly complex and personalized B2B buying journey.
Comprehensive Sales Technologies
The move to virtual communication opened the door to the role technology can play in sales enablement. The problem is sales teams now use several tools, which creates confusion, causes tools to be unused, creates security issues, and adds expense.
In fact, Allego research revealed that using multiple tools at once can seem like a second job for both sales leaders and reps—and this can end up undermining the impact of those tools.
It’s no surprise, then, that the preference for convenience and customization is resulting in convergence among sales technologies.
Opportunity: Organizations that make it easier for their sellers to customize their interactions with buyers and make it more convenient to buy from them will stand out from the crowd.
Challenge: Unfortunately, most sellers still juggle multiple technologies. Allego research finds the global average of learning tools and platforms in use today by any given company is 23—double the number that companies were using in 2011. Sales reps alone use an average of six tools. Too many tools hinder sales reps’ efficiency and performance.
Enablement Impact: Sellers must be able to access learning, content, and virtual selling tools in a comprehensive platform that improves efficiency and impact.
Sales Enablement Key to Addressing Buyer and Seller Needs
The best approach to sales enablement is one that appeals to both your sales team and your prospective customers. Creating a great experience for both groups is critical to producing the business outcome you’re looking for.
You need to win over your sellers with enablement that’s just as agile as they are and benefits them in the flow of their daily work. Don’t inflict sales enablement on your reps, inspire them instead.
At the same time, buyers want to work with sellers who know how to make the sales process relevant to them and their needs, while still giving them the independence they crave to navigate the buying journey on their own.
Today’s B2B buyers demand a new approach. Is your company ready to deliver a convenient, customized, and comprehensive experience?
Download The Sales Enablement Technology Report to get the latest insights and advice for building the best sales enablement tech stack.