Keeping informed of the latest trends ensures your brand stays ahead of the curve. That's especially true for business-to-business, or B2B, companies, given the challenges of the past few years.
We've compiled the latest B2B stats and facts to keep you updated on where the market is in 2023. Learn everything you need to know, from marketing to eCommerce.
In this article:
- B2B Lead Generation Statistics
- B2B Marketing Statistics
- B2B Seller Behaviour
- B2B Buyer Behaviour
- B2B Sales Statistics
- B2B eCommerce Statistics
B2B Lead Generation Statistics
- 86% of B2B firms leverage websites for customer interaction (Salesforce).
- Emails top lead generation for 38% of companies (Smart Insights).
- SEO, social media, and content marketing are key lead generators for 33%, 33%, and 30% of companies, respectively (Smart Insights).
Companies should rely on all forms of marketing available to them to generate leads. While email routinely performs best, email marketing is usually geared towards keeping old clients rather than generating new leads.
That's why a healthy balance between all stages of the buyer's journey is critical to a successful lead generation funnel.
Begin with SEO, social media, and content marketing to hook in new clients and leads, and then use email marketing to create a loyal brand relationship going forwards.
- 21% rely on SEM for lead generation (Smart Insights).
- 54% of B2B leads come from referrals (Zippia).
- 85% of marketers prioritise lead generation as a success metric (Zippia).
- LinkedIn dominates for B2B leads (Zippia).
LinkedIn remains the primary platform for professionals. With more than 740 million active users and heavy skew towards businesses, it's become a firm favourite of B2B marketers.
Through LinkedIn, you can launch ad campaigns, write and publish content, and even try cold outreach via the messenger. It's well worth the spend – LinkedIn's lead conversation rates are three times higher than any other major ad platform.
B2B Marketing Statistics
- Webinars are the lead generation choice for 53% of marketers (Demand Gen Report).
- LinkedIn (69%), Facebook (66%), and Instagram (61%) are key for B2B sales reps (HubSpot).
- Mature lead generation increases revenue by 133% (Intellistart).
- 76% of B2B companies heavily rely on blogs in content marketing (Zippia).
- 41% of B2B marketers peruse 3-5 content pieces before contacting sales (Demand Gen Report).
- 80% of decision-makers prefer articles over ads from prospects (WebFx).
Content is fundamental to driving customers toward your sales team, whether you're writing articles, how-tos, or white papers. Devise a content marketing strategy that caters to each stage in the sales funnel.
Create broad overviews of topics to hook your target audience, and then delve deeper into your products or services to funnel customers toward a sale. You can also use free eBooks and reports to build brand awareness, generating leads and contacts your sales team can harness.
- 53% favour email for early-stage lead generation (Cleverly).
- Cold calls convert at 2%, and cold emails at 1% (Zippia).
- Email is considered the most effective marketing channel by 59% of marketers (Zippia).
- Email newsletters are produced by 81% of marketers (Content Marketing Institute).
- 56% CMOs will focus on customer experience in the next two years (Zippia).
- Video marketing investment to increase for 68% of B2B businesses (Zippia).
As for SEO content marketing, your video marketing strategy should relate to the sales funnel. Short clips ranging from a few seconds to a few minutes garner high social media engagement.
However, integrate your video marketing into other marketing avenues for the best results. For example, add video customer testimonials or case studies into a cold email marketing campaign or integrate a video tutorial into a blog post.
B2B Seller Behaviour
- Sales reps use 11 hours weekly to seek training information (Spekit)
- 31% of B2B sales reps communicate with prospects 2-4 times, and 29% do so 5-7 times (HubSpot).
- Sales professionals spend 30% of their time selling (LinkedIn).
- AI use is set to increase for 47% of marketers (Salesforce).
B2B Buyer Behaviour
- Millennials play a role in 73% of B2B buying decisions (TechJury).
- Millennials now make 44% of final decisions (SFE Partners).
- Gen Z's buying habits differ significantly: they're quicker to be turned off by a bad buying experience and prefer less back and forth from brands (Digital Commerce 360).
- Older buyers are adapting to current trends and picking up buying habits from younger generations (Harvard Business Review).
The so-called Great Resignation of 2021 and 2022 sped up the retirement of the Baby Boomer generation. Out went those born in the post-war years allowing Millennials to step up from low-level positions and into managerial roles.
With Millennials forming the bulk of the new professional class, catering to this demographic (and the new Gen Z's) should be a key objective for B2B sales. Even LinkedIn now skews towards Millennials, with 44% of those between 25 to 30 on the platform.
- Non-personalized content frustrates 74% of customers (Business 2 Community).
- 80% of B2B buyers expect a B2C-like buying experience (GitNux).
- Personalization can boost engagement by 20% (GitNux).
- 94% see personalization as crucial for meeting their objectives (ContentStack).
- Smart personalization engines can lift profits by 15% (Business 2 Community).
Personalisation is no longer an optional extra; B2B customers expect it. Remember, you're not really dealing with a brand; you're dealing with people. They're used to the kind of experience consumers get and want that to translate into their professional life.
Forget cookie-cutter CTAs, generic cold emails, and stock sales copy. Everything from your email marketing to your digital ads should be tailored to your target audience. In email marketing, audience segmentation and personalised tokens allow bespoke email campaigns.
Consider creating buyer personas to help market to a specific client – think about their pain points, goals, buying power, and industry as you craft your sales pitch.
- 70% of millennial customers prefer text-based channels to communicate with brands, e.g., chatbots (ChatBot).
- 40% of users are fine with using bots for customer support (HubSpot).
- The main reasons B2B buyers chose a vendor are solution/business knowledge (69%), buyer understanding of the company (65%), and content aiding in business case development (62%) (Demandbase, 2019).
B2B Sales Statistics
- 70% buyer's journey is completed pre-sales contact (Foleon, 2020).
- 77% of B2B buyers spend more time on purchase research compared to 2019 (Weidert Group, 2020).
Your sales strategy doesn't begin with that first call or email. It begins the first time a customer interacts with your brand or thinks about your product or service.
Once upon a time, that was largely out of a company's hands. Now, with blogging, social media, cold emails, and video, you can take control of the buyer's journey.
There is a downside, however. The B2B buying process is becoming longer and more complicated due to the resources available. Potential clients now take their time researching and evaluating products and services.
That's where your content and social media come in. It sets the stage for your sales team to follow.
- Vendor websites are research resources for 48% of buyers (DemandBase, 2020).
- Social media is a buying process resource for 53% (Martech Today, 2020).
- 42% of consult sales reps in the first month of the buying process (Demandbase, 2020).
- 25% of millennial B2B buyers rely on search in the initial buying process (Foleon, 2020).
Search engine optimisation, or SEO, is the primary way to get noticed today. However, business buyers don't search in the same way consumers do. Because of their increased expertise, they tend to use longer, more technical keywords.
For B2B companies, these keywords are less competitive but have a lower search volume. Nonetheless, creating content around these keywords can funnel leads into your business.
B2B eCommerce Statistics
- B2B eCommerce sales to hit $1.77 trillion in 2022 (Big Commerce).
- Global eCommerce sales to reach $5 trillion in 2022, $6 trillion by 2024 (Big Commerce).
- B2B buyers conduct 12 searches pre-purchase, shaping 55% of marketing budgets (Business 2 Community)
- eCommerce share of total B2B sales in the US rose from 13% in 2019 to 17% in 2023 (Statista).
- Customer experience impacts 80% of B2B purchases, and just 20% are impacted by price or specific product (Magenest).
- 54% of agents find prospecting harder than five years ago (Sales Insight Lab, 2021).
- 50% of your initial prospects don't require your offerings (Sales Insight Lab, 2021).
- 90% of decision-makers ignore cold outreach (Accenture, 2017).
- Highest ROI from email (50%), SEO/SEM (43%), content marketing (34%), events (32%), and social media (23%) (Chief Marketer, 2020).
Just because finding leads and sales is getting harder doesn't mean it's impossible. You should focus on improving the ROI of all your marketing channels. New technologies like AI and advanced A/B testing can help analyse your strategies and advise on the best course of action.
Moreover, harnessing personalisation for eCommerce allows you to track a buyer's history and target them with marketing information guaranteed to result in a higher conversion rate.
At trumpet, we specialise in creating a fluid, personalised buyer's journey. Through our customer pods, you can track every step and centralise all their information. Want to learn more? Book a demo to get started.