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What is B2B sales experience?

Summer Nguyen | 12-17-2019

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For many years, customer experience has become the heart of every business and maybe more familiar with buyers than sales experience. According to a study by Walker, customer experience will become the most influential buying factor surpassing the price and product. If many businesses are wondering how always to create the best customer experience, they’ll surely scratch their heads about sales experience.

If you want to make good sales, you need to understand your buyers and focus your business scalability on creating value that they’re looking for. Let’s find more about how to ensure the success of your sales experience to turn your prospects into your happy customers.

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What is B2B sales experience?

What are B2B sales? How different with B2C?

B2B sales are short for business-to-business sales. It is a sales model involving one business selling products or services to another business rather than individual consumers. B2B and B2C (business-to-consumer) sales are different in that B2B offerings usually have a higher price, more unique purposes, a longer sale cycle, and requires a lot of touchpoints to close the deal. While B2C purchases are more likely to rely on personal buyers’ emotions, B2B transactions are influenced by many rational decision-makers (multiple stakeholders) in a company or organization.

What is B2B sales experience?

Customer experience is the entire customer journey with your business, including all interactions between customers and the company. B2B sales experience is mainly created during the sales process. It contributes much to the customer experience improvement and is an integral part of the customer experience. In general, it plays a crucial role in increasing sales and profits.

Critical Steps for a successful B2B sales experience

Evaluate and monitor the effectiveness of your sales process

Boosting your sales process starts with knowing how it performs now. You need a system for checking and tracking how things are going. No more guessing -use real data. Set-top Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and use automatic ways to gather data. By doing this, your team won’t waste time on manual tracking or entering data. Plus, you’ll make smarter choices about your sales process.

Examine and assess your sales process

Split your routine into parts. Each part has important tasks and time limits. This split-up shows where the routine is not working well or fast. Before you think about making B2B sales better, study your current sales method well. This review gives a full understanding of what’s working and what’s not, and helps to improve it. Look at the deals your team closed. Check the time used and steps needed to close the deal. This review can show which steps are key to moving prospects through your sales process.

Sketch your customer’s journey

RephraseImagine the path each customer type takes. It helps understand how they see your sales process and the hiccups they may encounter before buying. Understanding this path allows you to fine-tune your sales drive. Your team will be better prepared to help potential customers, boosting sales. Consider using tools like Eloqua to draw out a customer journey map.

Recognize possible points of congestion

As you move along the customer path, keep an eye out for possible roadblocks that could lead to a poor business-to-business encounter with your firm. These hurdles might include early product challenges, the length of prospect qualification, or the gap between different sales stages. Finding and fixing these problems is vital for providing a stellar experience for potential customers. If you’ve already got a customer journey map, use it to confirm findings from your sales team and customers. You might discover parts that aren’t working well or unveil previously unnoticed progress areas.

Set clear conditions for completing each step in your sales process

A prospect’s decision-making moment is crucial. It happens at the end of your sales process. Be sure to define success at each stage clearly. Also, provide the necessary info about your product so they can make an informed decision. Rephrase This includes ensuring they have a working demo account, getting around your product easily, having plenty of pricing options to match their needs, and understanding how your solution solves their problems.

Find ways to reduce the duration of your sales process

Think about the sales cycle as the journey from a person asking about your product to him actually using it. There’s not one answer to how long this should take. But it’s important to decide on a time limit.

Doing so will help you know if your strategies are working. To speed up the sales cycle, make sure to help the person see why your product is good for them.

Say a person needs help with marketing. Tell them how your product can help them. Offer solutions just right for them. Let’s say, they can’t pay much. For them, suggest a less expensive option. By doing so, they’re more likely to quickly make up their mind and start using your product.

Conduct thorough investigations

Doing thorough research assists in grasping what the potential customer requires. This way, you can shape your services to fit their needs. Understanding their position in their buying journey lets you customize their interaction with your business. Research doesn’t just communicate your know-how but also raises the chances that the client will be pleased and more eager to work with you. Looking for more info on potential clients? Try LeadFuze. This advanced tool uses AI to sift through data from places like social media, blogs, news stories. Each day, LeadFuze introduces new leads, rendering old methods like cold calling useless. Got a question? Their support team has your back all day, every day. This lets you concentrate on smarter, faster ways to generate leads.

Research

Conducting high-level market research is an essential step before starting your sales process. By researching your prospects, you will understand the current state of their demands for your offering, then draw proper sales plans and strategies.

research

It may be easy to reach your leads, your prospects, but to research them, you need more effort rather than just a survey. So what you need to do while studying to get the most useful insights?

You should start with the related information about customers’ companies, such as competency or business size, and track their activities related to your company. It’s somehow essential to learn about the number of sites they visited, or what they are searching on your website. Also, it’s helpful to find out what your prospects are hearing from your competitors.

Ask questions

After having done in-depth research on your prospects, you will get more information about them and, then you can ask many questions as you can to gain deeper insights into them than the initial research.

Asking questions is an effective way to open conversations with your customers and to show that you are taking your time to help them rather than just using them for sales sincerely. Directly asking questions also makes it easier for you to get the corrects answers for your doubtfulness and figure out which problem they are facing. Sometimes, they can’t call out their problems until you guide them. And to do this effectively, you should either set up a call through your business phone system or make use of video communication platforms like Slack.

Start with general questions and get to more specific ones gradually. Refrain from Yes or No questions. You can use some of below questions:

  • Where is your company located?
  • What are your company’s goals?
  • What is your company specialize in?
  • How can we help you to serve your customers better?
  • What challenges you have when serving your customers?

Listen to your prospects

There is no point if you ask a question but do not pay honest attention to the answer. Sometimes it’s rude and disrespectful to the people involved in the conversation.

By listening to your prospects, you can absorb the information which is helpful for your B2B sales process. Especially those questions about their current difficulties can reveal the problems that your company can solve. Spend more time listening than you do talking. It helps gain customers’ trust and build your brand name.

Educate your prospects

Teaching new information is a kind of sales pitch. While listening to your potential buyer, you will have opportunities to educate them. You can both help them get clear on what they are interested in and flesh out what you can offer. After being educated, your prospects may discover what they want and what they don’t want exactly.

When teaching, do not force your B2B sales leads to hearing too much about your goods and services. You are helping them broaden their knowledge, not selling anything. Besides, it’s better to let your customers drive the chat, do not make them overwhelmed with only your words.

Always be patient

It’s better to get into a conversation gradually with the company you are selling to. Do not rush to close a deal. It will make your potential buyers pressured and can leave the conversation anytime.

During the conversation, you should always be receptive so that you can figure out their goals, and how your products and services can solve their problems.

Plan your questions and prepare for challenges

From the information collected from research, you should plan out your conversation with prospects ahead. Before jumping into a conversation with a buyer, consider questions like “What do you know about them? Which questions to ask? When to ask those questions?”

plan questions

Write down all the questions and pick up the ones that can generate useful information to use later. Proper preparation keeps you always in control of the conversation.

However, even when you already anticipate every possibility, there may be some surprises when talking with your potential buyers. Their answers can be not relevant or not what you expect to hear. Sometimes they can ask questions that you did not prepare the answers. In any circumstance, ensure prospects that you are still on their feet.

Close the deal

After having done the above steps and reaching the customer’s satisfaction, you can close the conversation. Through all the steps above, at this stage, customers already know what they need to do next, and will have fewer questions. Also, once their concerns have been attended, they’ll be more likely to go to an essential step in their buying journey: making a decision.

Practice

When you learn something new such as a new language, if you don’t practice, it’ll be hard to master that language. Learning about the B2B sales technique and the ways of enhancing B2B sales experience also needs good practice. It helps you prepare for all sorts of situations and avoid confusion when encountering a wide variety of questions.

It’s better to write ahead sales script so that you don’t have to wonder if you are on the right flow of the process. Keep in mind that people are different, and each B2B buyer has different demands and mindset. It might be entirely futile for apply a single sales script to all buyers. If possible, you can categorize your prospects into specific groups and prepare scripts for each group, respectively.

No matter what your script should include the below points:

  • Greeting
  • Introduction
  • Branding
  • Purpose
  • Gather prospects’ contact information
  • Closing

What are the main challenges in B2B sales

Personalize

Personalization is about shaping experiences to suit individual needs. It takes into account each customer’s specific issues and likes.

But, B2B sales makes this tricky due to a variety of players and no uniform customer experience method. To get it right, we must know how to connect with these different players, keeping in mind the special traits of each business.

Personalizing is key, but B2B selling is complex and needs lots of time and resources for things like getting and studying customer data and making custom content. A crucial part is getting the right mix of personal touch and speedy service to not slow down the whole B2B sales progression. Solution

How can you solve the challenge of personalizing B2B sales ?

For B2B personalization issues, marketing automation and sales tools can help. These include clever CRMs for instant, individualized tips. Make use of document automation to lower non-sales work for representatives and smoothly add personal touches. Use AI and ML to look at customer data, spotting trends for well-informed, customized sales fun.

Patience

In B2B sales, playing the patience game is key, despite the rush to hit sales targets. When we rush, we can appear forceful, not persistent. Moving too fast might make us lose touch with the customer’s needs.

We shouldn’t reveal product demos or talk about in-house operations before convincing customers they need our product. That way, we work together better, making sales smoother and more effective.

How can you solve this B2B problem ?

Respect the modern “choice overkill” by empowering your customers and prospects. In this age where info is everywhere and automation is king, real freedom is key. Even with clever programs creating solutions, giving freedom involves actual steps: Provide a straightforward way to leave: Email “opt-out” messages to prospects not buying your product. Direct to learning materials: Help individuals find worth on their own through pertinent external items like eBooks. Encourage a community feel: Know your prospects, join with shared ideals, and value their choice-making journey. This method not only honors buyers’ freedom but also fosters faith, easing the sales route. Plus, it finds serious prospects, ensuring time is used productively.

Placement in the sales funnel

The heart of B2B sales is pinpointing where prospects or customers are in the sales process. It’s a delicate balancing act between providing relevant information for their roles in a timely manner, and leaving enough breathing room for the information to be absorbed. When there is misalignment between marketing and sales teams, it can incorrectly position these prospects.

Collaboration between these teams during the prospective customer’s journey ensures necessary information is delivered at the right time. But beware, a disjointed approach can stall the customer’s journey and create unnecessary tension, which is detrimental especially in tough economic conditions.

The solution?

Get your sales and marketing teams on the same page. This means focused efforts on keeping essential items like data sheets and case studies up-to-date. Successful sales depend on clear messaging, identifying each account’s use cases, and defining everyone’s role in the customer journey. With shared goals and clear job descriptions, sales and marketing can work together seamlessly. This enables consistent messaging and delivery of content which spikes engagement and seals deals. While details might differ, being on the same team is key to a successful B2B sales experience. If there’s a strong customer journey in place, any potential obstacle is easy to tackle.

5 tips to improve B2B sales experience

Determine your buyer personas

The one-size-fits-all method is not suitable anymore. Your prospects have different perspectives, pain points, and goals. That’s why you should create buyer personas to understand better who you are selling to.

Thanks to buyer personas, you can easily target customers to the content that is relevant and timely to them. Also, creating a buyer personas means you already have a thorough understanding of your buyer, so later, it’s easier to drive every movement in the sales process.

Map out your buyer journey

Customers approach your business to make a purchase through different paths. Hence, their touchpoints vary based on their preferences. You should research prospects thoroughly to know their touchpoints exactly. Some groups may require multiple touchpoints such as voice, message, or in-person interaction. Others may be interested in demos or free trials. It’s better to focus on their individual preferences to provide them with a satisfying shopping experience.

Provide educational content

Among the massive amount of content, customers usually suffer the information indigestion. To catch the audience’s attention and offer them value, you must be stand out and apart from others. Investing in inbound marketing is worth it.

Focus on pushing relevant, informative, and up-to-date content to customers via marketing tools such as websites, social media, SEO, etc., and other content assets like blog posts, articles, video, infographics. You can quickly develop a relationship with your audience and gain more valuable engagements from your potential customers.

Be crystal-clear about your value proposition

The value proposition is not just the products or services you deliver to customers; it is all the ingredients of your business that solve customers’ problems, make you more superior to competitors. In other words, it’s your business’s unique identifier. So it’s important to clarify your value proposition as it determines your business success.

When communicating with your prospects, ensure that your offering’s unique value proposition is straightforward so that your prospects can point out the solutions for their problems. If prospects find it hard to realize their problems, your value proposition can help to identify them.

get help frpm experts

Get advice from experts

Many companies take all efforts to enhance B2B sales experience by setting up it in-house. Some have succeeded, but for most of them, it’s going to be a challenging journey and requiring nonstop modification due to multiple influencing factors: changeable practices, customers’ demands, innovative technology tools, and Google ever-changing algorithms.

Don’t hesitate to find help from the experts who have the expertise and profound experience to guide which road you should go to.

Conclusion

You can not create an excellent B2B sales experience overnight. It is a journey that needs a consistent investment.

I hope you find this article helpful and relieve your pain points on how to start enhancing your B2B sales experience. If you have done and succeeded, let me know about your fruitful result.

In case you want to share your thoughts or add some useful information, you can comment below. I truly appreciate your time to read and contribute to this article.


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Summer

Marketing Manager of Mageplaza. Summer is attracted by new things. She loves writing, travelling and photography. Perceives herself as a part-time gymmer and a full-time dream chaser.



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