Business-to-business (B2B) describes a relationship, situation, or marketplace between one business entity and another. A B2B company is one sells to other businesses.

B2B sales refers to a sales model or a category of selling wherein a business sells its products or services to another business. Because B2B sales usually involves higher price points, more complex processes, and several touchpoints over multiple channels, B2B companies need to maintain a team of highly-trained B2B sales professionals in order to drive revenue.

What is B2B Sales

What are some B2B examples?

To help illustrate the key aspects of B2B sales, the following example provides an overview of each type of sales process that businesses may operate.

Example of B2B sales with suppliers

In this example, lets assume a company that sells large office equipment such as printers, copy machines, computers and other necessary supplies wants to expand its market to businesses outside of its geographic location.

The companys sales process is B2B sales because it is selling its office products to professional organizations rather than selling these products directly to individual consumers. The companys sales and marketing teams might be the ones to develop and implement strategies that reach a larger audience such as social media strategies, email marketing campaigns or even cold calling potential clients.

As the company expands its reach, it can ultimately acquire new and repeat businesses that purchase their office supply products.

Example of B2B sales with wholesalers

For this example, well assume a wholesale supply company sells computer parts that computer retailers use in their manufacturing process to produce and sell computers.

In this case, the wholesaler is operating as a supplier for computer retail companies that manufacture and sell desktop and laptop computers to consumers. The supply company is operating in B2B sales while the computer retailer is operating in B2C (business-to-consumer) sales.

In this case, the wholesale supply company might implement sales and marketing strategies to acquire and retain computer manufacturers that rely on their resources to produce computer products.

Example of B2B sales with service providers

As an example of a B2B sales process that provides a service to other businesses, well assume that an accounting firm wants to acquire larger business clients. The accounting firm has so far only provided its services to small businesses and individual brand owners, however, the firm wants to reach larger businesses. The marketing and sales teams might implement B2B strategies such as content marketing, email campaigns and presenting informational seminars to reach larger companies that may need the firms financial services.

Because the accounting firm acquires and works with businesses rather than individual customers, it is operating as a B2B service provider. Additionally, the firms status as a B2B service provider is unaffected by whether its business clients are also in B2B sales or if they operate in B2C sales.

What is B2B sales?

B2B sales is a term that refers to business-to-business sales, where a business or company sells products or services to other businesses rather than selling directly to consumers (B2C sales). B2B sales can be more complex in the purchasing cycle because many organizations have multiple buyers or other decision-makers in charge of purchasing products and services that help further the companys goals.

Oftentimes, B2B can be separated into three distinct categories of sales that can help determine a companys methods for reaching its target markets:

Depending on the type of B2B sales, a business may choose to implement a variety of sales techniques to acquire and retain customers.

Tips to be successful in B2B sales

To be successful in B2B sales, it can be critical to develop not only your sales skills but your strategic thinking skills, too. Additionally, you might also consider the following tips to help you further develop your skills and increase your success as a B2B salesperson.

Research your target markets

One key aspect of success in B2B sales is knowing the companies you sell to. Researching your target markets can help you build a list of potential business customers that your products or services can help.

Develop your industry and product knowledge

Developing a deeper understanding of your industry and your knowledge of the available products and resources your market needs can also help you succeed in B2B sales. You can start increasing your knowledge by conducting product research as well as an industry analysis to determine how to best position your products or services in front of your market.

Focus on helping create solutions

You can increase your B2B sales success by focusing on developing creative solutions that help businesses fulfill their needs. You might start your marketing campaigns with a clear message or idea that invites businesses to solve their main problems through your companys products or services.

Improve your communication skills

Succeeding in B2B sales can also depend on effective communication skills. Since the purchasing cycle can tend to be more complex than B2C sales, it can be crucial to develop effective negotiation, active listening and conversation skills. Communication skills can be essential when collaborating with your team on the development and implementation of sales and marketing strategies to reach target markets.

Build connections with your clientele

Continuing success in B2B sales can also rely heavily on the relationships you build with your clientele. When you focus on helping your target market solve its problems, you can increase the trust your clientele places in your business. This can result in retaining quality and loyal customers who continue to do business with your company.


What does B2B mean in sales?

How the B2B sales process works
  • Step 1: Do your research. A good B2B salesperson has to know their market, their competitors, and who their ideal customers are. …
  • Step 2: Find your customers. …
  • Step 3: Conduct your initial outreach. …
  • Step 4: Pitch to your leads. …
  • Step 5: Follow up. …
  • Step 6: Close the sale.

What are B2B sales examples?

There are mainly three types of B2B sales: supply sales, distribution sales, and service sales.

What differentiates B2B sales vs B2C sales?

Business to business (B2B) sales are transactions between two businesses rather than between a business and an individual consumer for the consumer’s personal use. B2B sales are characterized by larger transaction amounts, more educated buyers, a multistakeholder approval process and thus a longer sales cycle.

What are the four types of B2B selling?

B2B sales often take the form of one company selling supplies or components to another. For example, a tire manufacturer might sell merchandise to a car manufacturer. Another example would be wholesalers that sell their products to retailers who then turn around and sell them to consumers.

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