A look into B2B purchase process
Understanding B2B purchase process is simple and easy, but the modules inside it can be complex. Similar to the stages of consumer buying, every B2B purchase process is different, however, they share few steps in common, and this piece of writing is an attempt to bring out the essentials of it.
1) A problem or need is recognized: This is the first and most crucial step in the B2B buying process. A problem or a need is recognized in an organization, after recognizing the need, they figure out as to what kind of product/service would best meet their demand and solve the problem identified. This need can be caused by both internal or external stimuli.
2) The buy requirement is described and quantified: The second step in the B2B purchase process is describing the need, the features you are looking out for, order quantity, etc. Simply put, it is the succinct requirement specification.
3) Potential sellers are identified: The third step is to find out sellers who can supply the buy requirement and at this point of time, the buyers start to look out for vendors online and get references for the best suppliers who can provide competitive prices. The role of purchasing agents is highly important in this and suppliers who fail to meet the requirement are directly overlooked from the running.
4) Competent suppliers are asked to fill in the responses to quotation (RFP): The potential sellers or vendors that makes the cut is sent an offer or proposal, which is an invitation to submit the estimated quote to supply the product or service. In simple, Request for proposal describes what the supplier is able to offer, which may involve details like its quality, price, financing, delivery, after-sales service, and so on.
5) Evaluation the proposals: At this stage the collected proposals are evaluated, this evaluation process differs from organization to organization based on their one of a kind goals and the product/service they purchase. While some ponder on the quality, some give importance to price, still there exists other factors too.
6) An order routine is established: At this pre-final stage, the order is put together and includes details like the agreed price, quantity of the product, expected time of delivery, warranties, delivery lead time, return policies, and any other terms of negotiation.
7) Post purchase evaluation and feedback: The final stage of B2B purchase process is the evaluation of the seller service and sending feedback for the completed purchase. This is optional.