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Customer Experience shouldn’t be an afterthought in B2B

Have you heard about the Zappos case study? It’s one of the most passed-around, or should I say legendary, stories about the power of investing in customer experience out there. You see, Zappos, an online shoe seller, won a significant market share by creating the best experience for their customers. Customers loved them. Their competition couldn’t beat them at that time. It was all because of the way they treated their customers, and since then, most B2C companies have realized that CX matters a lot.

What about B2B companies? Can they outrun the competition by following Zappos' take on prioritizing CX? The importance of customer experience is becoming acknowledged in the business-to-business sphere. However, the remote-first approach to work and doing business that gained popularity because of the pandemic has made customer experience extremely important. B2B companies need to work on it now if they haven't yet.

A playing card with king that represents the importance of Customer Experience in B2B

Digital experiences win over face-to-face interactions in B2B

As a recent McKinsey study reports, both B2B buyers and sellers prefer the new reality of remote human interactions, while learning about the product, placing orders, and arranging service. Only 20% of B2B buyers say that they hope to go back to in-person sales when the pandemic stops - that's huge news. Salespeople need to prepare for that.

Besides investing in the right tools (which the McKinsey report linked above mentions too), sales teams can leverage the power of customer experience in the remote-first reality. It can help them create a bond with a client as strong as the one formed during a face-to-face conversation. Question is how to, and we believe we have an answer. Keep on reading.

Customer Experience increases B2B customer acquisition

So far we discovered two things. The first one is that B2B skews towards remote-first sales. The other one is that customer experience may help in customer acquisition, and it has a potential of making you the leader in your field since the Zappos case can be replicated. Before we go any further, let’s start with defining customer experience for B2B eCommerce.

What is Customer Experience (CX)?

Customer Experience is kind of a self-explanatory term. It’s literally the experience that customers have with whatever they interact with that stands as your company. It could be your website, shop, product, refund policy or even sales process. The last thing is what we - Meetsales - can help you with. We can facilitate you with creating an outstanding CX for your B2B sales. We will get back to that. Time for more questions.

Beware - you will never fully control CX

Customer Experience cannot be totally controlled but it can be influenced. As in Hubspot’s article on the topic, there are two parties involved in CX, that is you and the customer. You cannot control what your customers feel and think while they interact with you, but you can take ownership of those interactions.

You can change your website to match your ideal customer’s expectations, you can create internal guides for talking with customers, you can work on customer-first marketing and sales processes. Those are some of the examples of taking ownership over customer interactions with your company. Yet, you cannot have full control of what your customers think and feel about you.

There’s something you can do to bridge that gap a bit. It’s staying close to your customers, asking them questions, requesting their feedback, checking on them, helping them choose the right thing, whenever you have the chance. Practice this and you will gather a heap of knowledge you can use to strengthen CX. Why is it important to take care of Customer Experience? The answer is getting more clients for your B2B eCommerce.

How does the focus on CX increase B2B customer acquisition?

Let’s imagine that you are a customer. You want to buy new equipment for your company. You can insert any sort of equipment that you regularly buy for your company or anything you buy for yourself. You go on the website of the first company you can find, but the site is pretty vague. You can’t find the information you need, so you write an email and when you get the reply, it seems that it doesn’t fully cut it for you. You still have doubts.

Defeated, you search for a new coffee machine provider in hopes of learning everything you need to pick the machine. The same story repeats itself - you lack the same information, but the person on the other end, seems to really care that you get everything you need to reach the decision. They want you to be sure that they are a great choice for you and that you’re making an informed choice of a coffee machine provider.

The two made-up companies from the above scenario differ in their approach to Customer Experience. While both of them are not ideal merchants, the second one tries to acquire customers through providing a wholesome buyers experience. I would choose that company, since it clearly cares about providing me with everything I need to feel secure in the buying process. What about you?

From what I gather, I’m not alone. Another McKinsey research found that 70% of buying experiences are based on how customers feel while they are being treated. Customer Experience influences buying decisions, and it can be either in a positive or negative way.

How to build a great CX in a remote-first landscape?

Customer Experience seems easy in theory. You don’t need a revolution to start providing customers with a great experience at your company. But is that really so? The pandemic has made matters more complicated (or it may have just sped things up).

The world embraced digital, and remote-first sales are here to stay. There’s no coming back from that. Yet, is your company ready for it? A lot of B2B firms are not. As a result, Customer Experience suffers. Employees struggle to remain in close contact with customers and they don’t feel comfortable in their job.

B2B sales jobs have become difficult too. How to build relationships, trust, and understanding with potential customers in the remote-first environment? eCommerce companies are generally good in digital marketing, yet it is digital customer conversion they lag behind. One solution is to equip the team with the right tools.

Invest in digital sales tools to take care of remote-first Customer Experience

A standard Zoom call doesn’t seem to solve such problems. Regular conference tools lack sales features that would help close deals in B2B eCommerce, follow up on the offer, and keep track of the results. What if we sell more complex products? Such stock simply cannot be sold over a short video call. We need to guide the customer through the shopping journey, and it’s tough to accomplish that with just a video call or screen sharing.

What about Meetsales?

We’re growing Meetsales to equip sales teams with the right tools to sell to their remote-first customers. With the app, salespeople can present the offer in a totally new format. What is that? Like video conferencing apps, Meetsales is about a real-time, two-way connection over a video. But it has a special set of features that make it easy to close deals and make note of the sale.

Instead of just showing a sales rep on camera, one can launch a catalog, display the right product and talk about it, while both the presenter and the buyer see the same thing. Once interested, the buyer can put the product in the shopping cart. Everything happens in the same tab, so the buyer doesn’t need to switch tabs (and potentially get distracted) to finish their buying journey by finalizing the sale through payment or generating a successful offer.

Salespeople can access the purchase history of particular buyers, sync Meetsales to their CRM, ERP and PIM system, so every space is integrated. That’s a ton of features that a simple conferencing app cannot handle.

Why does Meetsales help you with CX?

Meetsales is the tool for the job. Chances are, it will help your sales team to provide your Customers with quality experience. It removes buying friction for your customers. It builds trust and understanding between your team and the business people who wish to buy from you. It helps your salespeople stay close with the customer. We would love to show you how.

Find out if Meetsales reinforces your CX strategy

Customer Experience is important in the B2B remote-first world. Don’t underestimate its power. But it’s hard to provide the greatest of experiences when you lack the tools for the job. Let us introduce you to Meetsales and we can check if you benefit from the app. Schedule a live demo. We will take you backstage to show you ins-and-outs of the app.

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