While it’s not too late to start, the urgency of accelerating digital adoption into the B2B sales funnels process has surged alongside the changing demographics of key corporate clients.
Across almost every sector, the majority of decision-makers on the procurement side are now the first generation of digital natives—millennials. Their buying journey begins not with a sales call but with a Google search.
An online product demo, for instance, might further them in the sales funnel, and they’re likely to make their purchase decision in real-time solely based on the compelling content on your digital channels.
Studies have shown that as much as 57% of B2B purchases would have been completed before the decision-maker even gets in touch with a sales rep.
Increasingly, the typical B2B buyer is telling us that they would vastly prefer the buying process to be conducted online due to its convenience. “Due to the increase of digital nomads, commencing an online service business is one of the best decisions startups can ever make,” stated Elluminatiinc.com. That’s why integrating digital tools and processes into current sales cycles can have an outsized impact on the effectiveness of business development and sales forces, radically optimizing the sales pipeline.
Benefits of B2B Sales Digitization
There’s no time like the present. According to McKinsey, the digitization of B2B can be just as disruptive as that of B2C or value chains. Digital channels—versus in-person sales meetings—are becoming a key component of B2B transactions, particularly among these millennial decision-makers.
Business owners who incorporate digital sales channels into their B2B sales cycle tend to increase customer face time, increase engagement, and turn more leads into sales.
The key advantages of digitizing these processes include increased sales opportunities, as well as the realization of work process efficiencies. Over half of a typical sales team’s time is now tied up with internal and administrative sales roles—digitization can help minimize this busy work and lend more time to closing deals.
It can also boost sales performance by opening up new sales channels as well as introducing tools that enhance productivity and enable advanced analytics.
Digitization (as well as digital recovery from the pandemic) can take a wide range of forms. Switching to digital interactions between potential customers and B2B sales teams—rather than going through traditional channels—can be a big first step in your sales strategy, complementing the switch over to paperless documentation.
For instance, a paperless trail of transactions can be verified quickly and securely through smart contracts. Businesses can also keep the sales process simple for customer service by maintaining all customer relationship management (CRM) information securely and conveniently from a single access point, rather than across multiple channels.
Other impactful areas of the digitization of B2B sales include guided selling online, which automatically serves up relevant content about the customers to the right sales reps when they need it. This helps to dramatically increase the value of qualified leads and increase hit rates.
Meanwhile, digitized up-selling or cross-selling, where individual consumer usage is digitally monitored to assess their potential purchase decisions, can maximize the value of customers. Revolutionary data science tools can also support this effort with sales models, data mining, and deep learning systems now available on the market.
Some of these changes might take time, but low-hanging fruit such as e-signatures can be adopted almost immediately. E-signatures attractiveness lies in their potential to transform business practices across a range of functions.
B2B transactions can be a logistical challenge even at the best of times, relying on the coordination of multiple signatories and reams of documents. In contrast to the traditional “wet” signature, e-signatures don’t just serve as a form of ID, they’re also actually a tool for enhancing the security of digital interactions.
All these need to be handled systematically and securely, which can lead to cumbersome paperwork.
E-Signatures As Game-Changers
E-signatures can be integrated into a system that simplifies this process—where records of terms, signatories, email addresses, and other details are verified and stored securely online. This essentially fulfills the function of having a digital notary.
There are some issues to keep in mind, however. The Electronic Signature & Records Association lists three key concerns that should be addressed before these systems can be implemented more widely: security, availability, and ease of use.
Business owners should also confirm the legal framework for such signatures in the markets in which they operate, although e-signatures have increasingly been accepted in an increasing number of jurisdictions worldwide. Fortunately, B2B sellers can easily reference various guides that offer primers on the legality of e-signatures across leading global markets.
B2B sales professionals will need professional support when they’re ready to get started. Businesses should look for trusted partners who can help them navigate the relevant regulations while ensuring that implementation aligns with existing and even future business needs.
But it’s not a one-size-fits-all situation. Businesses tend to adopt e-signatures in one of two ways:
1. B2B sales teams could start by simply signing up for an out-of-the-box e-signature solution (no integration required). The advantage is that it tends to have a lower threshold for onboarding B2B sales reps, due to the self-service nature of the journey, and can work with smaller businesses without an established sales system in place yet.
2. Larger companies might opt for a more comprehensive B2B purchase system integration. Internal stakeholders would work closely with the experts from the e-sign solutions provider to gradually migrate the company’s legacy systems and ensure a deeper level of digital integration.
DottedSign, which offers solutions to both scenarios, is an electronic signature service provider that features automated document management and tracking. As it enables the quick delivery of contracts while boasting a smart filing system, it’s an ideal solution for today’s typical B2B deals.
Key stakeholders and your new, modern buyers are ready for the future of sales. Give them the sense of security and convenience that corporate buyers are beginning to expect, and in turn supercharge the digitization of B2B sales in your business.
Get started with DottedSign today! Digitize your signature process and enjoy the freedom of workplace mobility. Free trials available: