The Overlooked Opportunity
How are the top quartile selling bigger, better and faster?
Higher-value campaigns aren’t working
Buyers of higher-value deals are getting more indecisive.
Sellers of bigger accounts are not being equipped for indecisive buyers.
Most sales teams see a problem. The top quartile see an opportunity.
40% of big deals stall
40% of higher-value deals in the pipeline are lost not to a competitor but to the buyer’s indecision (HBR).
78% of outreach fails
78% of sales & marketing teams think they are failing to deliver effective higher value campaigns (Bain).
£20M in wasted deals
Buyer indecision costs the average $200m software company sellers $20M in missed opportunities over the year (Gartner/Federal).
BUYING TOO COMPLEX
OVERWHELMED BY INTERNAL TASKS
Of buyers cannot tell the difference between their B2B suppliers (Google/CEB)
in Buying Committee
The number of decision makers is growing: 7 for smaller deals (<$1M), 11 for larger ($1M-$5M) (Gartner)
Fear for Reputation
of buyers fear losing respect if they’re unable to get support for a purchase, or if it proves unpopular; 12% even fear for their job (Gartner/HBR)
of buyers find the volume of information received overwhelming, even when it’s high quality (Gartner)
40% of bigger deals end in no decision. Why?
Data asphyxiation. “Customers are overwhelmed and often more paralyzed than empowered” HBR, The New B2B Sales Imperative
Buyers have to navigate too much information
Buyers have access to a near-infinite amount of information and choice. They spend 70% of their buying journey doing their own research, and they consult with more colleagues than ever before.
Buyer decisions are harder than ever
Are these developments reducing status quo bias? Are they making buying easier? No. Making a decision – actually buying something – is getting more difficult.
Buyers are overwhelmed
Buyers of bigger, more complex projects discover they’re overwhelmed by the task. Sellers are failing to realise that misalignment and excess information leads to indecision – and indecision leads to refuge in the status quo.
SELLING TOO COMPLEX
UNAWARE THEY OFTEN MAKE BUYER'S INTERNAL TASKS HARDER
of sellers mistakenly think ‘helping the customer consider all possible options is important’ – even though it actually encourages buyer indecision (HBR)
The overwhelming volume of information shared by most suppliers makes it 54% less likely they’ll close higher value deals (Gartner)
80% of buyers would prefer more help from sellers on internal decision maker alignment and earlier in the purchase (HBR)
78% of sales & marketing teams think they are failing to deliver effective higher value campaigns (Bain)
Sellers give too much information
Sellers confront buyers with an overload of information, right from the prospecting stage. The task becomes overwhelming for the buyer, who struggles to make a decision.
Sellers give too much choice
More choice for buyers doesn’t mean bigger deals – it means smaller ones. When faced with too many options, customers resort to product-level decisions. And when sellers encounter indecision, they too revert to the product-level comfort zone.
Sellers fail to align decision makers
Gartner estimates that up to 10 people are involved in the average B2B purchase. Buyers have to consult decision-making colleagues, sharing materials and navigating obstacles – but most sales materials focus on functional buyers, paying little attention to others
Sellers fail to prioritise internal buyer tasks
Most sellers do not realise the top quartile prioritises the need to help buyer champions to navigate their internal challenges – instead focusing too much and too early on supplier selection conversations.