Why B2B Buyers Want More Self-Service Options

Cusstomers Want More Self-Service Options-06

Welcome to 2020. Two-day shipping isn’t special – it’s standard. Your customers won’t, or can’t, afford to wait any longer than that. The bar has been raised. Want to know something else? Consumers all over the world won’t be impressed by self-service because they’ve come to expect it. So, how do you think it makes your business look if you’re still not using these tools throughout your sales engagements?

eBook Download: Riding the Self-Service Wave: Trends to Track Beyond 2020

Over the last few years, the enterprise sales environment has undertaken a colossal evolution. Compared to a decade ago, today’s buyers are smarter and much more likely to research available solutions before finding your product or service. They’re independent; and that means you need tools that empower customers to analyze and purchase your offering without even talking to a salesperson or setting digital foot inside your digital storefront.

This new alignment to next-gen consumer needs may feel strange for B2B sales teams that haven’t yet leveraged self-service capabilities. But many B2C principles can be successfully applied once carefully considered. And if the goal is to keep up and eventually dominate your competition, implementing a self-service workflow isn’t just important, it’s mission-critical moving forward.

eCommerce Trends: B2C Convenience In A B2B World

eCommerce was already on the upward trend, but the reality of 2020 and the pandemic has accelerated its trajectory in ways we can’t even yet imagine.

As a result, every buyer - B2B and B2C alike - has come to expect sophisticated measures and omnichannel transaction processes to be done in a timely and easy-to-complete manner. And self-service selling makes this experience possible to deliver on each individual customers’ unique terms, timelines, and budget.

With this shift in mind, it should come as no surprise that 72% of current B2B customers want a self-service option to manage their online purchases. Even more, McKinsey found that upwards of 80% of B2B buyers prefer self-service buying as a result of the pandemic.

Simply put, they want B2C convenience and superior buying experiences in the more complex B2B world – regardless of where they work or what industry they’re involved in.

Related Content: Using Clickwrap for Self-Service Flows Without Compromising Security

Internal Benefits to Self-Service Models

But self-service’s benefits aren’t limited to delivering a more impressive purchase experience to your customers. By implementing a self-service model, you give your sales team a chance to streamline complex internal sales workflows and align cross-functional needs for greater overall success. Not to mention creating the potential for faster onboarding processes, too.

If a potential buyer can fill out agreements, accept terms, and finalize a transaction all by themselves rather than relying on your salespeople to do so, and without legal acting a bottleneck (while still staying secure), your team can focus the majority of their time on finding new deals rather than advancing existing ones – increasing sales velocity and revenue growth in turn.

How to Enable Self-Service Buyer for a Top Performing Team

As painful as it may be to hear, it’s impossible to provide a top-tier customer experience if your prospects don’t have the tools to serve themselves. Equipped with self-service agreements, however, these people are empowered to buy what they want precisely when they want to without the interference of the middle man. That means no delays, no quotes, and no frustrating back-and-forth that’s notorious for killing deals.

A top-tier experience fueled by self-service effectively enables your customers to cut out the middle-man, which is a powerful statement that shows them you value their time and money. In a B2B environment filled with complexity and slow-moving processes, even one less step can be a huge value add when it comes to keeping buyers happy. But that’s not the only way to provide a satisfying experience through self-service.

Related Content: Self-Service Agreements In the Age of Digital Transformation

Here are three additional considerations that can make your self-service selling even more effective:

Pricing based on customer expectations and market trends

Time is money. The last thing a consumer wants to do is search for a price. Sending a message, scrolling through multiple pages, or talking to a sales representative can all be time-consuming processes that dissuade someone from finalizing a transaction. So, it’s critical your organization makes pricing transparent enough to move buyers efficiently through the sales funnel.

It’s also imperative that you understand buyer expectations and what similar solutions cost when trying to sell your own products and services. The last thing you can afford is to alienate potential customers when there are hundreds of other competitors they can purchase from.

Your self-service workflows should include intelligent pricing to eliminate negotiation and speed up your contract acceptance processes.

WATCH: Summary of Becoming Self-Service eBook

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Contracts that dynamically render terms to buyers

Dynamic contracting can help your businesses jump over a hurdle that often inhibits self-service selling. By working with your legal team to pre-structure terms and dynamically render data based on what a buyer wants to purchase, you’re able to standardize agreements and efficiently present them to each customer. And – more importantly – make self-service tools the go-to approval method whenever these deals are involved.

Contract/agreement presentation that doesn't interrupt buyer flow

If you take advantage of self-service selling tools, you’re able to accelerate online agreements – and do so without jeopardizing the technologies or legal securities involved.

Once a relevant product or service is found, clickwrap agreements make the rest of the transaction simple as the click of a button or check of a box. Clickwrap allows you to present agreements to a variety of users, manage each individual acceptance, and store specific data should you need to prove enforceability in a courtroom later on.

For more trends that will help keep your business at the top of its game, download our eBook, Riding the Self-Service Wave.

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