We’ve already seen some of the preferences of end-users in the Water Industry when it comes to searching for new products or suppliers, but what are some of the key factors that come into play when they are choosing which one to work with?
The next part of our survey focuses on supplier selection and what kind of factors can make a difference. We asked over 100 participants what makes them choose one supplier over another, what value they are looking for in a supplier, and what things can put them off selecting a supplier.
Availability Valued More than Price by End-Users
One of our key findings that may come as a surprise is that most end-users value availability over price. Overall, 77% said product availability was the most important factor when choosing a supplier, while 62% said price.
What Are the Top Expectations End-Users Have of Suppliers They Want to Work with?
As well as asking users what factors were important when choosing a supplier, we also wanted to know about their expectations so we asked them for the most important things they expect from a supplier they would work with.
The biggest reason they gave was selecting the right product, which was chosen by 69% of respondents. Availability or lead time was the second most important with 62%, and price and the sourcing of products came next.
What Do End-Users Value Most from Suppliers?
We asked the question in a slightly different way: rather than asking their reasons for choosing a supplier, we wanted to know what were the things they most valued. These factors can help us to determine not only why they choose one supplier over another, but also why they might stay with that supplier in the long term.
Our respondents said they valued fast response time the highest, with 86% giving this answer. 71% said they valued help with technical requirements, and 71% also said price.
In conclusion, the fastest-growing channel for industrial shoppers is online. The introduction of various ways to guide the shopper through a self-serve shopping portal is vital. While B2B customers appreciate the self-serve buying options, in cases where the products being offered require some complexity with technical requirements, compatibility with their current system, and maintenance or installation support, offering an easy-to-reach tech support line or live chat can increase the conversions significantly.
Gone are the days for website contact forms, and 1-800 support lines that transfer customers through various departments.
Manufacturers with a strong online strategy will be best equipped to gain the major share of the new generation of industrial buyers.