5 main differences in the work of B2B and B2C sales managers

By Bogdan Grebenyuk, Product Manager at Thermevo
on May 25, 2017
"Great salespeople can sell anything to anyone." - this is how a well-known opinion sounds. The fans of this saying will experience a terrific disappointment, coming from one type of sales to another. In fact, the basic laws of sales are the same. But the nuances make the work of sales managers completely different. What is B2B sales? I will give a few examples that will help you to understand the specifics of work in B2B sales.

1) Purchase purpose

What is the buyer doing with the goods in the B2C market? That's right - he consumes it. That is, the pleasure from consumption is a priority factor in the customer's choice on the B2C market. The product is bought for personal use and its consumer properties are the main in the product.

The consumer properties B2B product are completely different. Almost all of them are related to the way to increase the buyer's profits. For example, THERMEVO helps our buyers to manufacture better energy efficient doors and windows. We don't need to buy advertising on TV, but our sales managers should be proficient enough to convince a set of people who make a decision in the profitability of our product.

From this follows the most important difference between B2C and B2B sales:

  • In B2C sales, the client spends money to enjoy himself.
  • In B2B sales, the client spends money to earn more.
Of course, there are nuances. We pay the dentist, not for pleasure, but in this respect, the absence of pain afterwards is a pleasure. On the other hand, the printer cartridge does not make money, but it can derail a contract if it becomes empty at a wrong time.

2) "Buyer-consumer"

B2C buyer and consumer is usually one person. Of course, there are exceptions in the form of gifts and joint consumption. But the interests of the buyer and the consumer generally coincide. And what happens to the B2B buyer? The money belongs to the company but the decision to purchase is taken by a person with his personal interests.

There are multiple factors which affect the decision such as personal comfort in working with current loan, personal ambitions, friendly relations and another thousand of reasons, not related to a specific product. Therefore, the effectiveness of sales often depends on these "secondary factors".

3) The method of making decision

The greater the purchase price is, the more people are involved in making purchasing decisions. The greater the number of people should be satisfied with your goods.

The majority of private clients make a decision based on emotion or conviction in the brand quality. And the corporate customers often make a decision on the basis of the first paragraph: "How does the purchase fit into the overall system of the company and helps to earn more."

4) Method of communication

There are much more private individuals than legal entities. The amount of the transaction is usually small. Therefore, the main method of communication in the B2C market is mass communication - it is expensive to contact each customer in person. In the B2B market, there are a few companies buying some of your products.

When the consumer comes into the store, he is under the influence of advertising, PR, friends' advice, so the seller almost does not influence on the buyer's decision. When a salesman from the B2B sector contacts with the company, his skill affects much more. Sales depend more on this manager, and not on advertising or PR activity of the company. Accordingly, there is a natural outflow of successful sellers from B2C to B2B, where the manager is not influenced by the attendance of the store, promotion of the brand and consumer activity. But it's not so easy - for example, our salesman should be proficient in the field of polyamide insulating strips, thermal conductivity analysis etc. He should be able to explain to the buyer why THERMEVO FLIXO CLOUD is a better choice to optimise the U(f) value of the thermal break system, rather than older desktop solutions. That's why technical salesman is the king of salespeople.

5) Sales process

As a result of all of the above, success in the B2C market depends on:

  • Advertising
  • Consumer properties
  • Ease of purchase
  • Definition of work system service
  • Quality of the service system
And in B2B market sales depend on:

  • Salesman skills
  • Probability that product will increase buyer's profits
Summing up we can say that work with corporate clients in the field of B2B is more delicate than in B2C. It requires communication with many people in the company, and in most cases depends on the sales manager proficiency. And success in working with individuals (B2C sales) requires the creation of a well-functioning system, where the salesman skill is one of the elements.

Hopefully, after reading the article you won't have to wonder what it is B2B sales.

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