B2B Buying In A Pandemic: Sellers Must Be Alert To Threats, Study Shows

Here is more evidence that the COVID-10 pandemic has had a major impact on B2B buying habits. 

A PROS study shows that 44% of North American buyers have decelerated purchasing. But 42% have accelerated it and the remainder have not changed. 

The bad news is that 70% are shifting their wallet share, with 25% shifting it a great deal. 

Why would that be? For one thing, 44% say their existing vendors have been slow or inefficient in answering them. 

This shows the vendors lack strong triggered email systems, or ABM platforms that alert sales teams that the client is showing intent and other relevant data. 

Another 31% of buyers complain that pricing is not competitive or relevant to their market. And 31% cite inconsistent or highly variable pricing.

But a whopping 67% are at least somewhat likely to switch for dynamic pricing, and 23% are neutral.

This spells opportunity if you can use intent data to identify prospects.   



If you have an email program, cite pricing discounts in the subject line — it works in B2C.

Overall, the study documents great instability, we'd say. And it more or less coincides with a study by Mission Control, showing that 55% of B2B companies have cut their buying budgets this year, and that 24% have cut existing vendors and 45 have halted projects or work with vendors.  

In addition, Mission Control reports they are tightening up their processes for choosing vendors — 47% of firms now have a policy that halts any engagement with new providers. And they are not rushing to engage even with the vendors they know.  

Meanwhile, reports that 40% say their vendors were well-prepared when the COVID-19 crisis hit, and 36% say that half were ready.  

However, 24% report their vendors were underprepared, although 21% say those suppliers were working on improving their response.

The study also shows 49% have accelerated their shift to digital post-COVID-19 and 47% since COVID-19. (We’re not sure we understand the distinction — is the pandemic over?). And 35% had done so prior to COVID-19. 

All the more reason to have an effective email platform in place.

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