B2B customer acquisition is changing and becoming more sophisticated as companies modify their buying processes.
Larger companies often have buying teams for most of their purchases, so you can no longer rely on getting through to one decision maker. The sales cycles are getting longer and more complex, as well, as people learn about various solution options themselves via multiple devices accessing content on several media channels.
Indeed, business buyers have already made 57% of any buying decision before contacting their preferred supplier, as revealed by CEB Global. Logically, if you are selling in the B2B space, you must do everything you can to proactively influence buying teams on the early side of their buying processes.
A Whole New B2B Sales Game
Let’s take a look at a few things you can do to help optimize the way you handle sales for the way B2B works today.
Passive inbound marketing is fading away, because there is more content out there than there is reading time available. Even when you are using top dollar content, it no longer has the impact it once had.
If you sell wheels for widgets, what would you give to know the widget making companies that search your site, what they looked at, and the links they followed? What would your B2B sales team be able to do if they had these people’s phone numbers?
Typically, only two out of every 100 website visitors leave their contact details, which means that 98 are likely checking out your competitors.
You need to be proactive and use soft selling techniques, rather than sitting back and waiting for potential clients to contact you.
The death of passive sales means you need to make your web pages interactive. When you engage with visitors, answer questions and offer assistance. Make sure your website is no longer just one in a long line of bland content sites. Make sure you stand out, increasing the likelihood that you will get the sale.
Get Them Chatting
Deploying an on-site chat app lets you interact with live visitors while they are checking out your site. Remove the customer experience friction associated with sub-par content organization, clunky contact forms and reply lag times by letting people ask you questions as they come up.
Chat.io is just one of many trusted chat tools that you can install on your site. The personal touch helps B2B online sales just as it does when you are selling direct to consumers. Chat, custom quotes and personalized pricing are all tools you should consider utilizing on your B2B site.
Offer Content Upgrades
There are two types of content upgrade; those that require you to submit an email address and others that are offered freely. Unfortunately, you must decide whether you want an email address or to make a sale.
Conventional inbound marketing theory says that you ask for the email address, nurture the contact through email marketing and then perhaps make the sale at some point in the future. You might ask what harm can it do to capture an email address. Well, it makes the potential buyer’s journey more convoluted so that you lose some leads along the way.
On the other hand, offering a link to a white paper or other valuable resource makes the B2B buyer’s job easier and establishes your business as knowledgeable and easy to deal with.
Ask Mini Questions
Chat windows don’t work for every visitor, so it can be beneficial to install a guest question app such as Informizely as well.
Informizely helps you to ask site visitors simple question such as:
- What were you looking for on our site today?
- Did you find what you were looking for?
- What could we do better?
The software delivers the audience members’ responses to your in-app dashboard, where they can help you make changes that will help you serve your prospects better.
Closing More Deals
It is easy to make the common business mistake of thinking you can read your customers’ minds. You can’t, and the only way to find what your buyers are looking for is to ask them. That way you can make sure to interact with your leads in a manner that supports what they want. It also allows you to modify your offerings over time, so they are a better match with your audience’s requirements.
Passive marketing won’t work with many B2B buying teams. You need to be proactive, to learn as much as you can about them and to reach out, offering to help. Don’t give up on collecting emails altogether. Prospects take many different routes through their research, and email automation will still help some through their decision-making.