B2B Industrial Buyers Consider Price First, But Other Factors Also Influence Decisions

December 2, 2013

This article is included in these additional categories:

B2B | Brand Loyalty & Purchase Habits | CSR & Environmental

TriComB2BDaytonU-Importance-of-Price-B2B-Industrial-Buyers-Dec2013Roughly 6 in 10 B2B buyers from industrial sectors indicate that at least 60% of their purchase decisions are dominated by the immediate purchase price of the equipment, according to a research report [pdf] compiled by TriComB2B in partnership with the University of Dayton School of Business Administration. In all, price dominates in 55% of purchases, per the research, relatively unchanged from 57% in a similar study conducted in 2011. Interestingly, buyers are now conducting more extensive research for smaller purchases.

This year, all respondents said they would conduct a more complete analysis of their purchase for a minimum purchase price of no greater than $100,000. In the 2011 study, about 1 in 5 respondents said the purchase price would have to be greater than that threshold for them to conduct a more extensive analysis.

That suggests an increasing focus on maximizing funds spent, and coupled with the pricing data, indicates that higher-priced vendors have some work cut out for them. Encouragingly, though, the study demonstrates that total cost of ownership (TCO) is also a significant factor for B2B buyers: 51% of respondents consider it in a least 60% of their purchase decisions.

Other than price and TCO, respondents indicated that other aspects such as operating costs, potential efficiency improvements and impact on customer service play a significant role in a majority of their purchases. Interestingly, energy efficiency of products and a “green” supply chain for the product are considered important in less than half of purchases, consistent with research from McKinsey showing that sustainability in products and services is not a key consideration for B2B buyers.

Also of keen interest: asked to rank product benefits, features and the corporate brand in order of importance, 51.4% of respondents ranked benefits as their most important factor, while 36.7% ranked product features most important and only 12% the corporate brand.

About the Data: The research findings are derived from an online survey responses of 443 individuals within industrial sectors in North America.

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