Understand the Digital B2B Customer Buying Journey

New Digital Selling / Buying Environment

Insights gained from McKinsey & Company article

In the new digital environment sales & marketing need to interact with customers using digital tools at different points on their buying journey. 

Based on McKinsy research (2014) the benefits are significant:

  • up to 20 percent increase in customer leads
  • 10 percent growth in first-time customers
  • a speedup of as much as 20 percent in the time that elapses between qualifying a lead and closing a deal.

More People Involved in Buying Process, making it more complicated

B2B selling has become less linear as customers research, evaluate, select, and share experiences about products.

Influence of Consumer Buying of B2B Purchasing

  • Impact of Social Media especially if buyer in millennial
  • More “real time” interaction
    • McKinsey research shows B2b customer regularly uses 6 different interactive channels during the decision journey, and almost 65% will become frustrated with the inconsistent results
  • Increased number of “gateways of influence” show >60% of of B2B deals are lost before the formal RFQ / RFP process begins

The Sales Funnel Linear Tracking is now more Dynamic

“It’s now possible to follow the lead of customers rather than force them to follow the sales organization”. 

Adapting to the new B2B Buying Journey

  • drilling down on customer segment, the buying expectations and needs at each stage of the journey
  • allocating sales and marketing resources to the activities most likely to influence decisions
  • ramp up collaboration between marketing and sales


The Lee Odden blog post on Content Marketing includes quality content & diagrams to illustrate this new “customer journey”:

Identify customer segments – What are the common characteristics of the customers you want to do business with?


Map the buying journey – What channels are influential during the buying cycle?


What questions do buyers have during the sales cycle? For each segment identify the important questions your buyers need answers for.


For more info email me direct


About John Cullen

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