What Buyers Really Want From Suppliers…..and it isn’t the Lowest Price

A recent Buyersphere survey revealed that although B2B buyers say they are looking for the best price, they end up making a decision based on a number of other factors that often outrank price.

A major influence is the personal implications of making a poor B2B purchasing decision. Buyers don’t want to risk harming their career or their reputation, so whilst they often roll out the company line about price, they actually want suppliers that can perform and add value.

Generally, B2B buyers will make a list of essential qualifying criteria that the product or service needs to meet. However, there are other factors that influence the final decision; some of which the Buyer may not even realise themselves.

As marketers or salespeople, we need to understand these factors to enable us to positively influence the buying decision in our favour. Factors ranked as highly important by B2B buyers are:

1. I Want a Supplier Who Puts My Mind at Ease

The impact that a buying decision can have on an individual in their working life is considerable. Buyers are keen to realise benefits that help them in their job or make their life easier, but they are acutely aware of the risks if a purchase decision goes wrong. A bad decision could damage their credibility and status within the organisation or even put their career in jeopardy.

These risks make B2B buyers highly cautious and risk-averse. It explains why reliability is such a key desired attribute of an ideal supplier, but also why confidence in the supplier and buying the best product or service overtakes all other factors when it comes to the suppliers that are actually selected.

2. I Want to Work with Someone Who Understands Me Personally

A buying decision is not only made on the needs of the business; the motivations and needs of the individual Buyer themselves are very important.

Understanding the individual’s pain points or aspirations and tailoring your approach to show how your solution will help them personally will put you above your competitors that focus purely on the business benefits.

3. I Value Transparency and Honesty

According to the Value Selling Associates research study, nearly 60 percent of B2B buyers felt that a salesperson had recently provided false information in order to try to make a sale.

A commonly cited example of false information is where some of the work is being outsourced, yet when asked, salespeople claim overwise. Often this will come out, and if the Buyer starts to have doubt about your honesty it’s unlikely they’ll buy from you – or it the very least it will damage your chance of building a lasting relationship.

Salespeople need to gain the trust of Buyers. Demonstrating honesty and transparency are key ways of building trust.

4. I Want a Supplier Who Is Like Me

B2B purchases usually involve a medium to long-term working relationship, so cultural fit is extremely important. Creative brands want to deal with other creative brands; big businesses want to deal with other big businesses.

If your typical customer is highly professional and corporate in approach, you should aim to match this in your communications, tone, branding and sales conversations.


To businesses, price will always be important. However, with B2B purchases of any significance, few Buyers select the cheapest option; and those that do, not solely because it was the cheapest option.

At Beanstalk we understand modern B2B buyers. Our experience of generating 1,000’s of sales appointments and leads over the last 10 years is the leads that convert to customers are where the Buyer sees genuine value in the proposition being offered and trusts the seller.

Our approach to lead generation is to sell on value not on price and to build relationships with Buyers that aren’t sales ready today because building trust with these Buyers at an early stage is key to winning their business in the future.

If you’re interested in a professional approach to B2B lead generation that aligns lead generation to sales revenue, please get in touch on info@beanstalkmarketing.co.uk or 0345 474 2047.