Adding Value for B2B Customers: 3 Motivators Driving the Vendor Selection Process for Small Businesses

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How do you see yourself as a B2B company?

Your answer has a big impact on how you differentiate yourself from your competitors and how potential customers decide who their new outsourced vendor will be.

Are you a specialized high achiever with a laserlike focus on your industry and core service offerings? Do you have a lower level of specialization but a high degree of aptitude for forming partnerships and helping your clients navigate new terrain?

Today, it seems like vendors need to merge these two approaches in order to stand out from the crowd.

Defining Your Expertise and Establishing Your Flexibility

Without a strong core product or specialization, businesses won’t seek you out. They’re looking for a vendor because they have a specific problem they need to solve.

On the other hand, if you’re not the kind of business partner that can add value for their customer, there are likely lots of other vendors willing to do just that.

So where does that leave your company? You need to know what you’re good at, and you need to bring added value to the table to secure the deal and keep your customers happy.

Large conglomerates and mom-and-pop businesses alike are looking for business partners.

A recent survey from Clutch found that 37% of small businesses outsourced at least one business process in the previous year. To help you sell to small businesses, you need to know why they’re looking for added value from your company.

It’s All About ROI

Small businesses with tight budgets need help from outsourced vendors, but they don’t have much room for error.

That’s why the return on investment is an increasingly important part of the decision process for SMB buyers. In fact, a Demand Generation report concluded that 74% of B2B buyers conducted a more detailed ROI analysis compared to the previous year.

To come out on top for a small business purchasing decision, your company has to be able to demonstrate that they can outperform similar competitors on the ROI test.

In addition to providing transparent and comprehensive information to help decision-makers trust that you’ll deliver the returns they’re looking for, you can also undertake specific product expansions to improve your ROI.

Your knee-jerk reaction might be to find a way to lower the price of your core product or service, but being perceived as the bargain-priced provider may limit your appeal to purchasers who are looking for a trusted partner.

This is where value-added services can be a big game-changer for differentiating your offering among other B2B solutions targeting small businesses in your area of expertise.

Here are the three small business purchasing motivators that you can satisfy by adding value beyond your central product.

1. Up the Returns: Balance Small Business ROI by Increasing What The Clients Get Back

Here’s the secret: Lots of customers who want a strong return on investment aren’t looking for lower prices. They’re looking for greater value.

Small business customers who are looking to outsource a business process likely know the ballpark figures they can expect to pay for your service, and they’ll know that limiting their spend will likely stifle the quality they can expect. Under many circumstances, they won’t want to shortchange their needs.

Instead, they want to balance the ROI equation by getting more out of the “return” side of things.

One of the great advantages of selling to small businesses, in this regard, is that their departmental budgets are less likely to be housed in rigid silos.

For instance, a small business that outsources order fulfillment to another organization will be perfectly happy to receive additional marketing support from their fulfillment partner. They’ll just chuck it into the overall ROI of working with this vendor. Larger businesses may have greater trouble with that kind of cross-departmental collaboration.

2. Real Measurements, Not Just Guesstimates

Tangible analytics help small businesses measure the success of their KPIs after outsourcing a business process, which helps them report verifiable ROI.

Without having the data to show how the investment has impacted their business, purchasers can’t demonstrate their own success or the value of their purchase.

If you can’t actually tell how well something is doing, how can you justify continuing to spend money on it? The answer is, you can’t.

Value-added services that purchasers and users report the real impact they’ve had are absolutely invaluable for small business B2B buyers.

3. Heal Stronger: Fix the Problem and Grow With the Client

Small businesses outsource processes, at first, to address a problem they’ve observed. They find a B2B partner who can help them solve that specific problem.

Once the problem is fixed, they probably expect their business to grow. If you’ve helped your customer solve a problem, are you ready to pitch in as they expand?

Providing value-added services for your small business client demonstrates a commitment to their growth. If you’re ready to help them not only iron out how they function today, but to also be there providing additional value that complements their future aspirations, then they know they can stick with you as they turn their small business into the company of their dreams.

At Company.com, we’ve created a personalized business Dashboard that can be co-branded with channel partners as a value-added benefit for the partners’ clients. The Dashboard provides instant access to a full platform of small business solutions. Find out how you could become a channel partner today.