Avionos’ has published a report that suggests B2B buyers want to have their cake and eat it too. They want the basics: convenience and productivity, as well as ongoing digital product innovation in commerce and marketing. This is according to Avionos’s B2B commerce report, “Never Settle: Expect the Basics and Innovation in B2B eCommerce Capabilities Now.”
The 2022 report showcases how B2B buyer expectations have elevated regarding basic capabilities like delivery and fulfilment. Other areas covered include access to sales reps, and understanding product information. As well as more complex experiences like consistent global brand experiences that offer local tax calculation and regional content.
These insights are set among the backdrop of B2B decision-makers facing near-certain recession, tightening markets, and complex global economic conditions. As a result, there is growing concern among B2B buyers about efficiencies within their organisations, suppliers and partners. Productivity, convenience, and efficiency are critical as they navigate this market.
To better understand how B2B organisations seek to push forward with innovation without sacrificing the fundamentals, Avionos surveyed 150 B2B buyers in manufacturing, financial services, and consumer packaged goods about their buying preferences and experiences.
Report Key findings:
- B2B buyers will switch suppliers for a better experience. 85% of B2B buyers would turn to a competitor if their supplier’s digital channel can’t keep up with their requirements. This holds steady from 90% in 2021 and 88% in 2020.
- Efficiency is top of mind for B2B buyers. B2B buyers’ top priority for the next 12 months is increasing efficiency in their processes.
- Supplier tech creates frustration. 97% of online buyers experience some sort of pain point during the eCommerce purchasing process because of suppliers’ tech solutions.
- Global operations require additional oversight. B2B buyers at global companies feel the most important capability suppliers can provide is a consistent global brand experience.
- B2B buyers value — and seek out – innovation. 94% of B2B buyers agree their company prefers to work with suppliers that continuously evolve their digital capabilities. Furthermore, they experiment with offerings.
A changed global landscape
“Much has changed in the world and our global economy over the four years we have been conducting this report. Yet we continue to see the same finding from our research. Suppliers that don’t meet B2B buyers’ digital experience expectations will fail,” said Scott Webb, CEO of Avionos.
“B2B buyers saw rapid acceleration of their digital transformation journeys. They are telling us that not all of their suppliers are keeping up with the new pace of change. That is both the challenge and the opportunity that faces B2B organisations today. Buyers have every reason to expect the basics of productivity and efficiency – internally and with suppliers and partners. At the same time also seeing innovation in their offerings to customers. In times of drastic change like we’ll see through year-end, B2B companies cannot bury their heads in the sand. They must keep moving forward. We thrive being their stewards through the uncertainty,” Webb added.
To take their businesses to the next level, B2B buyers seek out evolved suppliers capable of layering in innovation and efficiency. Unfortunately, those expectations are not always being met. The report found 72% of B2B buyers experienced frustration over suppliers’ resistance to changing operations to better fit buyer needs. Suppliers ignore such frustrations at their own risk.
While B2B buyers’ ongoing frustrations with suppliers are valid, many organisations know they have their own work to do. Avionos’ research showed B2B buyers are open to changing operational processes with the goal of efficiency and innovation in mind. However, while B2B decision-makers are open to these improvements, they struggle to turn it into action.
Enterprise Times: What this means for business.
According to a recent survey by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services, 58% of executives named improving the customer experience as a top-five priority. Improving your customer experience may be a strategic priority. But that means it also has to be a technological and operational priority. As customers evolve, business must evolve too. The key to this continuous evolution is implementing the right technology to meet both your short-and long-term goals. This is true of those firms operating in both B2C and now B2B markets.
Avionos’ latest B2B buyer report unveils that B2B buyers want to have their cake and eat it too. They want the basics: convenience and productivity, as well as ongoing digital product innovation in commerce and marketing. Similar aspirations to B2C customers, who will also want an extra slice of social media. B2B providers can’t afford to treat B2B, as the Cinderella service with poorer customer experience and minimal innovations. Buyers who will buys goods and services as B2C customers, expect exactly the same standards and innovations when purchasing for their business. The 2022 report shows that there is no going back from the past two years of accelerated digital transformation across B2B industries. With their vision laser-focused on the path forward, B2B buyers are eager to maximise their technology investments. To find new ways to improve the “new normal” of eCommerce.