November 11, 2019

80% of B2B Buyers Have Switched From Suppliers That are Unable to Align Their Services with Buyer Expectations, Accenture Interactive Research Finds

New Global Study Explores Untapped Opportunity for Growth in the B2B Market by Putting Customer Experiences First

MIAMI; Nov. 11, 2019 – A global study released today by Accenture Interactive at the annual B2B Online conference highlights urgency for B2B leaders to combine a human-centered approach to sales with investments in digital tools to improve the service experience for customers and achieve lasting growth.

The study titled Service is the New Sales, surveyed 748 B2B buyers and 1,499 B2B sellers across 10 countries and 16 industries. It isolated B2B leaders from the laggards via weighted responses given to 12 questions across three key pillars of B2B transformation (organizational strategy, activities, and infrastructure) to distinguish between organizations leading the way and those falling behind.

“Today’s B2B leaders are struggling with how to effectively integrate human interactions with digital experiences that enhance customer service,” said Glen Hartman, head of Accenture Interactive, North America and global digital marketing lead. “Our study identifies prescriptive steps for B2B sellers to drive lasting growth by embracing service as a top priority, resulting in higher buyer satisfaction and longer term, more loyal relationships.”

The challenge: A growing rift between buyers and sellers
There’s an increasing dissatisfaction among buyers in the B2B space; in fact, 80% of frequent buyers report that they will have switched suppliers at least once within a 24-month period. The study highlights several reasons for this growing frustration, including:

The opportunity: Connected experiences, better service
B2B organizations that are embracing a higher standard of service have an opportunity to transform their businesses and overall buyer experience through intelligent, personalized interactions and a strong focus on shared success. The study finds that leaders taking a service-over-sales approach are already benefitting from their efforts, with 96% reporting higher profitability and 97% reporting increased market share.

The three key steps every B2B organization can take to capitalize on this opportunity and reap the benefits seen by today’s B2B leaders are:

“Our findings highlight a clear misalignment between buyers’ needs and sellers’ offerings, which requires both technology and the human touch,” said Jason Michaels, managing director and B2B marketing lead at Accenture Interactive. “To succeed in today’s B2B ecosystem, sellers must invest in both digital and service-oriented customer experiences that will help drive powerful outcomes for themselves and for their buyers.”

To read the full Service is the New Sales study, please visit:

Accenture Interactive interviewed 748 buyers and 1,499 sellers across 10 countries, 16 industries, and more than 20 roles in March 2019. Countries included Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, the UK, and the U.S. Industries were grouped under seven key industry sectors: products; transportation/transit, logistics, utilities and infrastructure; automotive, aerospace and defense; chemicals, materials and industrial equipment; technology and electronics; life sciences; communications, media and entertainment.

All respondents were either directly involved in or had oversight of their firm’s buying or selling strategy and processes. Around a quarter were from the C-suite, while the rest were manager level and above. All firms included in the survey reported annual revenues of at least $25 million a year up to more than $5 billion a year for the largest sellers.

About Accenture
Accenture (NYSE: ACN) is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialized skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions — underpinned by the world’s largest delivery network — Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for their stakeholders. With 492,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. Visit us at

Accenture Interactive helps the world’s leading brands transform their customer experiences across the entire customer journey. Through our connected offerings in design, marketing, content and commerce, we create new ways to win in today’s experience-led economy. Accenture Interactive is ranked the world’s largest digital agency in the latest Ad Age Agency Report for the fourth year in a row, and was named a 2019 Most Innovative Company in Advertising by Fast Company. To learn more, follow us @AccentureSong and visit

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