We knew it. The sellers don’t really know What Buyers Want. TrustRadius has conducted a detailed study on buying and selling of Business Technology and surveyed 941 people – 712 Buyers and 229 vendor marketers and salespeople and figured “they don’t see eye to eye!”.
Here are the highlights :
- There remains a trust gap in the B2B buying process—and it’s as wide as ever. – Buyers “ranked all of the sources they used during their process in terms of how trustworthy and influential they were, vendor-controlled sources of information (reps, blog, website, marketing collateral, etc.) come in last.”
- The effects of the trust gap are starting to snowball. Because of the gap, fewer customers than ever take your representatives seriously. This year, “only 11% of buyers said vendor representatives were very trustworthy, and only 19% said vendor representatives were very influential in making their decision. This is far below the 53% of vendors who said they thought reps were very effective at helping move their buyers towards a decision”
- Only 1 in 5 buyers said the vendor they bought from was very influential in helping them choose the product over alternatives.
- Now over half of buyers rely on reviews, while less than one in four buyers relies on analysts. “Reviews grew about 13% in usage year over year. Reviews are now tied with the vendor/ product website for #2 most used information source (behind product demos, which is #1). Meanwhile, analyst rankings & reports saw a 22% YoY decrease in buyer usage.”
- 59% of our buyer survey respondents were millennials. Around 1 in 3 millennials identified themselves as the lead buyer.
- The top thing vendors can do to speed up purchase cycles is to be more transparent about product capabilities and limitations. 71% of buyers say it’s very important to understand the cons before buying, but only 42% of vendors thought so.
- Customer-centric vendors had more influence with their buyers, and were 4x more likely to say their reps were very effective.
- Type of Tech bought : IT and marketing were at the top. Sales came a distant 5th.
- 95% of the purchases were collaborative with over 60% deals having between 2-5 individuals
- 85% of buyer seriously weighted multiple options. 41% evaluated 2 while 44% looked at 3 options.
- 46% buyers took over one quarter to close the deal.
- Product demos were the most accessed information source for buyers (over 65%)
- Vendor tactics put Marketing Collaterals and Product Demos as their top used resource. Yet, marketing collateral misalignment in effective assistance – buyers (9%)and vendors(14%) both agree – marketing collaterals do not work. So is company product websites.
- Product demos were identified as the most effective in moving the buyer towards a sale.
There is a lot more in the report and it is well worth a read. I will also recommend downloading the previous years reports and compare the information and see them evolving over the years. It will show the trends in many crucial areas in the Buyer Seller relationship.
Not a pretty picture, this.
Links: You can find more on the report as well as a download link here : https://vendors.trustradius.com/the-2019-b2b-buying-disconnect-report/