COVID-19 impacted nearly every aspect of everyday life. The B2B landscape was not immune to those changes – buyer expectations, preferences, and behaviors rapidly shifted, bucking “business as usual” for good.
The pandemic ushered in digital adoption in a massive way. The shift may have started as a crisis response, but it has transformed into the next normal, with implications for how buyers and sellers will continue to do business in 2021 and beyond. Buyers and buying cycles have changed, and there’s no going back.
We’re sharing how both B2B buyers and traditional buying cycles changed as a result of the pandemic, and how you can adapt your business to thrive in the new normal.
COVID-19 Increases B2B Online Buying
The lines between B2B and B2C continue to blur, and buyers expect the buying journey to mimic the consumer experience, offering the same online buying options. McKinsey found that 70-80% of B2B decision makers prefer digital self-service and remote sales rep interactions, due to safety precautions, ease of scheduling, travel cost savings, and a faster buyer experience.
More and more, B2B buyers were adopting self-service options in recent years, but they’ve often been limited to reordering products or making smaller purchases. Failing to expand beyond these options is a missed opportunity – 70% of buyers are now willing to independently purchase new items online in excess of $50,000, and 27% of buyers are comfortable purchasing in excess of half a million dollars.
We don’t expect buyers’ preference for convenient self-service tools to go away. In fact, 90% of B2B buyers reported that they expect the remote and digital buying model to stay for the long haul, and three out of four believe the new standard is as or more effective than the old model.
To meet this demand, a strong e-commerce presence and digital strategy is critical.Continue reading COVID-19 Changed B2B Buying Forever