The Biggest Misconceptions When It Comes to B2B Sales

If you run a B2B organization, you can know how hard it is to find effective marketing advice.

Many marketing writers only create content for B2C businesses, meaning their advice isn’t always practical or applicable to B2B sales.

You also have to watch out for the many B2B sales and marketing myths that are floating around on the internet. If you’re not aware of these myths and misconceptions, they can easily mislead you about the B2B sales process and best practices you should use.

These are four of the biggest misconceptions that businesses and salespeople have when it comes to B2B sales.


1. B2B Customers Don’t Shop Online

Often, marketing advice assumes that business buyers are old-fashioned when it comes to researching brands and making deals. Market research shows that 89% of B2B buyers use the internet for research during their buyer’s journey. Millennials and Gen Z workers, in particular, are more likely to rely on the internet when researching brands for a partnership or purchase.

A closely related myth is that B2B customers don’t use their mobile devices for research or shopping (and don’t need mobile-responsive sites as a result).

Statistics show that this idea is mostly wrong — plenty of business buyers and decision-makers will use their mobile devices to research, browse online catalogs and learn more about brands they may buy from in the future.

In addition to prepping your web presence for business customers, it’s also a good idea to make sure that your site and storefront are mobile responsive. Preparing your online presence for mobile devices will help ensure that potential buyers don’t navigate away from your site when it doesn’t load well on their phone or tablet.


2. B2B Sales Is In compatible With Ecommerce

Compared to B2C pricing, B2B pricing is often more complex — involving the use of pricing structures and quoting for specific products, projects or services.

For this reason, many B2B businesses assume that ecommerce platforms won’t meet their needs, as these platforms are built with the simpler B2C buying experience in mind.

Many modern ecommerce platforms are built for B2B businesses, however, and take into account the complex reality of B2B sales and pricing.

These platforms allow companies to catalog the goods and services they offer, automate the quoting process and provide dynamic information on business pricing structures. In practice, they can provide in-depth information about how your business prices its goods and give potential buyers and idea of how much they’ll pay even before they request a quote.

Taking advantage of these platforms can help your business streamline the buying process for potential customers, helping move them closer to a purchase. They also help to serve the 24/7 customer, who may be researching or buying at any hour of the day.

Because a growing number of B2B businesses offer ecommerce services — and B2B sales happen via ecommerce channels more and more often — choosing not to adopt ecommerce may also mean falling behind the competition over the next few years


3. The Only Decision-Makers Are in the C-Suite

When selling to big clients, B2B salespeople may focus their attention exclusively on the C-suite, or executives who appear to have a similar level of decision-making power. While it is true that these people may have the final authority over a purchase, they may not be that involved in the research and sales process itself.

Instead, a variety of decision-makers and employees at all levels of the business may interact with your company, research your products and come to their own conclusions about the value your offerings can provide.

If your business forgets about these decision-makers, they could end up targeting the wrong people. The information that the C-suite will ultimately use to decide on a purchase comes from both your business and their employees. Appealing to the workers who are doing the research and learning more about your brand can help you secure a deal.


4. B2B Buyers Prefer Offline Sales Channels

An offline-only approach is no longer an effective way to reach customers and make sales. In fact, 94% of B2B decision-makers say that an omnichannel approach to sales is as effective or more effective than the sales model they used before the pandemic. This number is up from just 65% of decision-makers in April 2020.

Combining sales channels like self-service ecommerce tools, in-person sales, video chats, online chats and email can help a B2B business reach more customers and make more sales.

Customers are using more sales channels than ever before when researching and purchasing products. Aiming for an omnichannel sales experience can help businesses meet the needs of these customers and ensure the smoothest buyer’s journey possible.

Customer expectations are also rising, meaning that customers may be much less likely to move towards a sale if a business doesn’t provide the sales channels that they prefer. Providing a wide range of popular sales channels will help a B2B business ensure that customers can proceed towards a sale using the channel that they’re most comfortable with.


How B2B Businesses Can Improve Their Sales Operations

A B2B business’s sales operations can be held back by some common misconceptions about business customers and the current B2B market.

Right now, ecommerce and the omnichannel experience are more important than ever — and research shows that ecommerce is likely to only become more important over the next few years.

Along with a few other sales channels, including video chat and online chats, self-service ecommerce may be one of the most important ways for businesses to connect with potential customers and encourage sales.

B2B businesses that want to succeed in the current market should embrace ecommerce if they haven’t already and prepare their online presence for customers who use the internet to research brands and make purchasing decisions.

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