The “2015 Content Preferences Survey” from Demand Gen has revealed that 67 percent of B2B buyers rely more on content to research and make purchasing decisions than they did a year ago.
When it comes to the types of content being consumed, B2B buyers are exploring a number of different channels. Over the past year, 83 percent of respondents said that they have turned to white papers for research. This is compared to 78 percent recorded in the previous year. Approximately 68 percent of people said that e-books were their go-to pieces of content, up 10 percentage points from 12 months ago.
Other popular forms of content assessed by researchers included webinars, blog posts, and videos.
About 70 percent of buyers said they go to social media and peer recommendations for these resources. However, content was not the only way that B2B buyers conducted research before making a purchase.
“When asked where they go to begin the process of researching a buying decision, a general Web search is still the starting point for 61 percent of respondents, which is in line with the previous year’s results,” wrote the authors of the report.
The Risks Associated with Making Purchases
As the survey revealed, B2B buyers are invested in research and making educated purchase decisions, but what happens when a poor choice is made?
In the “What’s the Future of Sales?” report released by SAP Software & Solutions, 77 percent of buyers said they are afraid of wasting company money on a poor purchase. Approximately 58 percent of people said they feared wasting time, while 56 percent didn’t want to lose any credibility.
“It seems buyers aren‘t just becoming more informed but are simultaneously more risk-averse,” wrote the authors of the report. “Two-thirds (67 percent) admit the sales process is taking longer, as they take their time to evaluate more alternatives.”
About 13 percent of buyers said they were afraid of losing their job due to a poor purchasing decision.