It’s time to streamline the vendor / buyer relationship in B2B sales

February 1, 2023
4 minutes

“Time is money.” 

Whether you first heard it in a movie or from a passionate salesperson in your life, it’s a phrase we can bet you’ve come across at least once before. And the reason it’s so prevalent is because it’s true. At the end of the day, any time you spend doing something for your business can be given a financial value — and the less time you spend on something, the less money you tend to spend. 

When it comes to the B2B SaaS sales process, this adage plays out in a number of ways. Buying SaaS technology for an enterprise is a complex process and by the time a buyer is even ready to talk to a potential vendor, they’ve already done a lot of work up front to identify their problem and the type of solution they need to solve it. This means that sales reps need to engage buyers at the precise right moment and then quickly take them through the path to purchase. 

To stand out from their competitors, sales teams have to be able to be agile and responsive, rapidly aligning to the customer’s needs and facilitating their decision making. Getting this right requires efficient processes supported by the right tools and technologies. In this piece, we’re taking a closer look at what this looks like in practice, and how sales teams can benefit from minimizing the time spent on a sales flow.

A look at the B2B buying journey

When it comes to the B2B buyer’s journey, the reality is that vendors only play a small part in it. According to Gartner, buyers only spend 17% of the buying process meeting with potential vendors. The rest of the time is spent on independent research and getting input from the buying group. 

Another important thing to note about the B2B  buyer’s journey is that it is far from linear. While there are four key components in the process — problem identification, solution exploration, requirements building, and supplier selection — it’s an iterative experience. Requirements may change halfway through, budgets may be adjusted, or a whitepaper uncovered in the research stage may indicate that the buyer’s needs are different than what they originally thought. 

For sales reps, the complexity of today’s B2B buyer’s journeys makes it difficult to pin down buyers at the time they’re ready to talk and evaluate their solution. It also means that by the time they are ready to have a conversation, buyers want to move quickly so that they can implement that solution and solve the challenge they identified as effectively as possible. 

3 ways speed up success for sales

Ensuring your sales team is both efficient and effective is key to success in today’s B2B buying landscape, but it’s not going to happen overnight. Here are three investments you can make to ultimately save time as you engage your prospects. 

1. Make friends with other teams

Historically, sales teams have prided themselves on working alone to bring customers in. They’re often seen as the flashy face of the company, and they don’t need support from any other teams to bring in revenue. However, this doesn’t work in today’s B2B sales.

Partnering with other departments — including legal, marketing, and security — can be a key enabler for sales teams that want to move quickly. For example, working with marketing to define what a qualified lead is can foster alignment and reduce back and forth between teams. In addition, partnering with your security team to educate the sales reps can also better position them to leverage your security posture in sales calls.

2. Make processes efficient

Streamlined workflows are also crucial to speeding up the sales process. Take the time to audit your existing processes — both sales-specific and interdepartmental ones — and review where your team might be spending too much time. Is there a step that requires too much back and forth? Is there a bottleneck in the NDA signing process? 

Once you’ve identified the barriers, spend the time to streamline them with additional tooling or resources, if you’re able. 

3. Leverage the right tools

Sales teams that want to move fast need the right technology to support them. From a robust customer relationship management (CRM) platform and lead scoring system, to sales analytics tooling, there are many software solutions that can enable your sales reps. 

Smaller, niche tools will also be important here. For example, Pima helps sales reps get NDAs signed in minutes so they can send confidential compliance documents. For CircleCI, this means they can get a SOC 2 compliance report to their prospects in ten seconds or less, without having to waste time on watermarks and signatures.

Sales teams that take these three steps can better position themselves to shine within the complex buyer’s journey and simplify the path to purchase. 

Pima is making it easier for sales teams to keep prospects engaged in the sales process. Learn how.

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