B2B SALES HAVE CHANGED!
The COVID-19 pandemic will be with us for the foreseeable future. It has not only affected the way we live, but it has greatly affected the way we conducted our business. In this article I will be referring primarily to B2B transactions. A lot of my statistics are based on an article published by McKinsey & Company.
Many small business owners are still waiting for business transactions to go back to the “Old Normal,” however, more than three quarters of buyers and sellers say they now prefer digital self-service and remote human engagement over face-to-face interactions.
For a time it appeared that remote transactions were a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and they may well have been due to safety precautions. But remote interactions have made it easier for buyers to get information, place orders and arrange service, and customers have enjoyed that speed and convenience. Research by McKinsey showed that only about 20% of B2B buyers say they hope to return to in-person sales.
Video and live chat have emerged as the predominant channels for interacting and closing sales with B2B customers. Sellers also believe digital prospecting is as effective as in-person meetings to connect with existing customers.
So what does this mean to small business owners who are in the B2B category? I believe that the information I shared is accurate and that digital adoption is needed to not only survive but to grow. This is an opportunity to further digitize your marketing models and gain a competitive marketing advantage over the rest of your competition who are still fighting digitization.
As all of us become more familiar with video communications and tools such as live chat, we will have to re-learn how to communicate effectively in this new environment.
As small business owners you now have the same or an even greater opportunity than your larger competitors. You can move faster and make the necessary changes faster than big firms that have multi-layers of decision makers to approve any change.
There will be a learning curve, but if you start now you can lead your industry instead of following it.
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