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New Enquiro Survey: How Important is Online Research in Business to Business (B2B) Purchase Decisions
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Enquiro Search Solutions Inc. has released a new B2B research study that looks at the importance of online research in business to business (B2B) purchase decisions. The B2B survey was conducted with over 1000 B2B buyers, with the purpose to discover how people research B2B buying decisions online and how this varies by role within a company and by purchase phase. The study is an update to similar research done by Enquiro in 2004. Previous B2B whitepapers can be downloaded from Enquiro.com

There are some interesting findings for B2B marketers to consider. For B2B marketers who are looking to find information on B2B purchase habits, this new research paper by Enquiro is a must read. The 52 page document contains a number of interesting findings include such items as:
  • 77.7 % of users researching B2B solutions who begin their research online started with Google
  • The majority of respodents relied heavily on vendor sites as they were going through the research process
  • As the research process turns into the negotiation stage, many purchasers rely on B2B vertical search engines to help gather detailed information. Other sources included industry websites, distributor websites and offline channels such as trade journals and industry related publications
  • The study also communicated that content is still king for B2B clients

One interesting fact is that without question, the respondents prefer to access information from B2B websites in text format that is easily downloadable and transferable to others in their organization. Criticial information that these B2B prospects are looking for include:

  • Pricing
  • Extensive Product Information
  • Technical Specs
  • Information on Customer Service

Less important content included:

  • Rich Media
  • Online Video
  • Podcasts

This is interesting as many online marketers are jumping on board with some of these technologies such as podcasts and online video. While this may be great for a B2C transaction, the benefit as an influencing factor in the B2B transaction is much less. With the B2B buyer, simpler is better. This is great insight on the type of content that B2B marketers need to have on their site with key items being pricing and technical specifications.

Another surprising finding was that the responsents were split 50/50 when it came to online vs. offline conversions. Of course price point comes into place here but the stat is quite a bit higher than previous reports.

In terms of interaction with the search engines, 74.4% of respondents chose an organic link on the Search Engines Results Page (SERP) vs. a paid/sponsored link (18/7%). This stat is similar to what we've seen over the past few years and is a strong indication of the importance of organic search marketing efforts as opposed to sponsored ads. Add to this fact that the top 4 organic listings captured 52.6% of all click throughs and you get the impression that B2B marketers should be focusing on well optimized content for higher organic listings.

For those B2B marketers looking for information on B2B purchasing behaviour, Enquiro's B2B Research paper is a must read. The 52 page research paper can be downloaded free by going to Enquiro's whitepaper download.

Official Enquiro Press Release on 2007 B2B Research Study
Official Enquiro Site
Enquiro Research

Enquiro B2B Whitepapers
Enquiro Eye Tracking Whitepapers

Looking to conduct online B2B research? Contact Enquiro for more information.

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posted by Jody @ Wednesday, May 16, 2007  
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