B2B customers are increasingly led by consumer habits and experience

New report from Avanade on B2B customers shows more are relying on social media and peer advice, and will pay more for better customer experience

B2B customers are increasingly displaying the characteristics of consumers when it comes to purchasing behaviour, and rate customer experience over cost , a new report claims.

The B2B is the new B2C report was produced by Wakefield Research for IT integrator, Avanade, and is based on surveys of 1000 c-level executives and IT decision makers globally, including 75 Australian respondents.

The report showed enterprise customers are increasingly doing their own research and sourcing feedback from partners and peers in the market place, then bringing vendor sales staff in much later in the decision-making cycle.

For example, 61 per cent of respondents consult third-party sources before consulting an enterprise company’s Salesforce, including third-party sites, social channels, and peers with previous experience with a product or service. Eighty-nine per cent also said these sources are a factor when making B2B purchasing decisions.

In addition, 42 per cent of buyers reviewed a company on a third-party website, and one-third posted a review on social media channels, while nearly 20 per cent posted comments about the company on Twitter.

Another key finding from the new research was that business buyers are willing to spend up to 30 per cent more on products and services supported by an improved customer experience. Fifty-six per cent of respondents said they had paid more for a product or service in the last six months because the customer experience was better than other, less expensive options.

Use data to bring back corner store customer experiences
Is B2B marketing boring?
What B2B can learn from consumers

Avanade country manager, Jeyan Jeevaratnam, told CMO the research was part of a quarterly process by the integrator to understand latest buying trends in the market, and modern customer behaviour. He pointed out Avanade as a business is increasingly investing in more user-friendly experience and design-led IT interfaces to better customer engagement.

“The buying cycle hasn’t changed a huge amount – B2B is a longer process than B2C – but the way companies research purchases, and the process of decision-making, has definitely changed,” Jeevaratnam commented. “Customers are much more informed. Previously you’d have to explain what it is you do and how you do what you do. Today, customers already know what you do.”

The Avanade isn’t the first report indicating the changing buying behaviour influencing B2B sales, but it does highlight the need for organisations in this space to increasingly invest in value-led content, more consultative selling and longer-term customer experience deliverables. According to a recent piece of research undertaken by the Corporate Executive Board, B2B buyers are on average 57 per cent of the way through the purchasing cycle before they make contact with a supplier (Related article: Why your B2B content marketing strategy isn’t working).

B2B suppliers realigning around better customer experience are reporting longer-term and more lucrative relationships, the Avanade report stated. It found 60 per cent of companies that have built new business processes and technologies to accommodate shifts in customer interactions report increased revenue, while 6- per cent also report a large customer base and 61 per cent report improved customer loyalty.

Among the ways organisations are embracing this customer-oriented approach is through process and technology. Eighty-three of survey respondents said IT, marketing and manufacturing now play larger roles in directly managing customer experiences than they did three years ago. The report also stated 83 per cent plan to invest in technology aimed at improving their customer experience in the next year.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments
cmo-xs-promo

Latest Videos

More Videos

Nice blog!Blog is really informative , valuable.keep updating us with such amazing blogs.influencer agency in Melbourne

Rajat Kumar

Why flipping Status Quo Bias is the key to B2B marketing success

Read more

good this information are very helpful for millions of peoples customer loyalty Consultant is an important part of every business.

Tom Devid

Report: 4 ways to generate customer loyalty

Read more

Great post, thanks for sharing such a informative content.

CodeWare Limited

APAC software company brings on first VP of growth

Read more

This article highlights Gartner’s latest digital experience platforms report and how they are influencing content operations ecosystems. ...

vikram Roy

Gartner 2022 Digital Experience Platforms reveals leading vendor players

Read more

What about this one FormDesigner.pro? I think it's a great platform providing a lot of options, you can collect different data and work w...

Salvador Lopez

Gartner highlights four content marketing platform players as leaders

Read more

Blog Posts

​Why we need to look at the whole brand puzzle, not just play with the pieces

Creating meaningful brands should be a holistic and considered process. However, all too frequently it’s one that is disparate and reactive, where one objective is prioritized at the expense of all others. So, what are the key pieces to the ‘good’ brand puzzle?

Marketing overseas? 4 ways to make your message stick

Companies encounter a variety of challenges when it comes to marketing overseas. Marketing departments often don’t know much about the business and cultural context of the international audiences they are trying to reach. Sometimes they are also unsure about what kind of marketing they should be doing.

Cynthia Dearin

Author, business strategist, advisor

From unconscious to reflective: What level of data user are you?

Using data is a hot topic right now. Leaders are realising data can no longer just be the responsibility of dedicated analysts or staff with ‘data’ in their title or role description.

Dr Selena Fisk

Data expert, author

Sign in