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Differences between B2C and B2B sales models

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Industrial B2B sales model differs in various ways from B2C. Buyer companies make purchase decisions based on comprehensive research, technical analysis, and rational logic in industrial markets. Conversely, consumers often buy with instant need and emotional choices in B2C markets. Some behavioral differences between B2C and B2B sales models are:

Decision mechanism in B2C and B2B sales

In B2C and B2B sales, the decision mechanism works differently from each other. In B2C sales, sellers encourage consumers to buy the product in place, so the sales cycle is relatively shorter. In B2C sales, consumers usually decide to buy anything for themselves. Buying anything is a one-person decision-making procedure. Consumers make their purchasing decisions according to their personal preferences. Buying behavior of B2C customers is often the result of emotional choices that rely on individual wishes or attractive prices.

In industrial B2B sales, you deal with experienced procurement teams, technical experts, and top management. When making a purchase decision, customers pay attention to the product’s and seller company’s features and the benefits those features bring. Primary features such as the quality of products and services, the price/performance ratio, after-sales services, feedback from other clients, and the vendor’s continuous open communication channels directly influence the purchase decision.

differences of b2b sales

Price and payment terms

Price and payment terms are not similar to each other in B2C and B2B sales models. Consumers who buy products through the B2C sales channels most probably pay the same price as other consumers. There is no case-by-case pricing mechanism. Consumers choose products in B2C transactions and pay using payment methods such as credit or debit cards, checks, or cash at the point of sale.

In the industrial B2B market, the price may vary according to the customer. Customers that place large orders and negotiate special payment conditions may pay less than other small volumed buyer companies. The payment method also differs from the B2C system. The customer company determines the products to buy and places an order. Customers rarely pay at the time of order. They make payment under the conditions agreed in the sales agreement.

purchase order is the final step of B2B sales

Business relations

B2C sales are considered as one-off transactions. The sellers entirely focus on closing the deal. Consumer behavior is variable and emotional because a momentary decision or desire drives the act of buying. Various marketing strategies targeting the customer trigger the urge to buy. Because both the customer and seller base are extensive, there are usually no deep personal relationships established.

Customer relationship differences between B2C and B2B sales

Customer relations established in B2C and B2B sales are different due to the capacity of the business. Procurement is an investment for both sides. Sometimes a sales expert spends months of time and effort to meet a single potential customer’s requirements. You need to take care of everyone who has a role in purchasing and influence them to place an order. This effort’s underlying expectation is to set up a long-term business relationship.

Industrial B2B sales is certainly not a one-time transaction, as you will constantly interact with your customers during the after-sales services and re-buying process. Purchasing takes time because choosing a long-term partner may be hard for any buyer company. Industrial companies pay great importance to select a reliable supplier. They prefer stable connections to reliable partners.

There are essential distinctions between B2C and B2B sales models

Target market range in B2C and B2B sales

The target market for the B2C sales is extensive. You probably target millions of people who need your products and services. Let’s say you manufacture and sell laptop computer bags. Millions of people using laptop computers can be your potential customers.

The amount of potential customers in industrial B2B markets is much smaller than in consumer markets. Therefore, customer companies’ requirements determine the volume of the market. Let’s give the same product as an example. Let’s say you sell automation systems for factories that produce laptop bags. Your potential customers will be companies that manufacture laptop bags around the world. Of course, your target market relatively will be much narrower than the laptop bag consumer market.

As you can see, there are essential distinctions between B2C and B2B sales models. Suppose you have experience in B2C sales and want to leap to B2B markets. In that case, you need to evaluate those differences carefully. Always be aware that the sales business differs not only according to the products sold but also according to the customer base.

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