A few months ago, no one imagined that the world could change so fast and drastically due to a disease. Yet, here we are, in the middle of the COVID crisis, stumbling to understand that the B2B sales world has changed, and they are here to stay. At the end of this month, we’ll finally have the Q2 data to analyze better how much things shifted. 

However, this article will summarize the existing impacts our customers already experienced and how you can leverage them. With most mainly working from home following the pandemic, digital interactions have now become twice as important. Furthermore, the massive shift to remote work requires digital-enabled sales, outstanding digital experience, and strategy to overcome budget cuts.


Remote Selling

Since mid-February, the world observed an overwhelming wave of remote selling: First, companies started to cancel face-to-face sales meetings, followed by all non-essential interactions. Finally, mid-March, the lockdown turned the B2B sales landscape upside down. 90% of the sellers were forced to work remotely, a McKinsey report wrote. Zoom announced an astounding growth with over 300% for video communication on its platform. Face to face meetings, traditional business events like conferences, trade shows, and summits, belong, at least for now, into the past. Without these advantages of social interactions, sales reps find themselves locked in their homes. Over night they turned from three-dimensional figures into two-dimensional figures. To close a deal, they have to understand and impress their clients from behind the screen. This requires better preparation, more tailored messaging, tuned value propositions, and presentation decks. When we started our journeys, salespeople were telling us: 

“I don’t need so much preparation; all I need is to let my prospect open up over drinks or attend a conference to chat with prospects.” 

Since the COVID crisis this luxury of impressing people with a bit of wining and dining is gone. The focus now lies on the sales rep’s readiness to show off powerful insights or the right messages. Enki’s AI-based B2B solution can help you gather the information you need to impress.


Digital interactions 

According to a McKinsey report, top salespeople rated digital interactions on average twice as valuable. With an increase of digital interactions, it also means more traffic to your channels. A McKinsey survey showed that an outstanding digital performance makes it twice as likely to get chosen. Moreover, companies with exceptional digital performance are 70% more likely to get the deal than those offering only adequate performance. The key is to address consumers’ pain points: speed, transparency, and know-how. This is an opportunity to gear up for a complete digital experience and ad valued tools for business buyers. For example, implementing a live chat or an FAQ helps answer questions quickly and professionally, which can take early customer doubts. Moreover, complex ordering processes, technical issues, and confusing websites also cause frustrations among buyers.


Budget cuts

During crises, companies always went to massive budget cuts, and the same is happening right now. Therefore, sales reps need to understand their customers’ pain points in a much deeper way. Is it a cash flow problem, efficiency problem, or are they losing market share? They have to re-align themselves to the core issue of their clients.

For example, our founder used to be a Business Development Executive for a startup, selling unproven AI solutions to the oil and gas industry. While working in this position, he discovered that people are unlikely to change if everything goes as planned. Even though the barrel of oil was down to $26 and the industry had to face substantial revenue losses. At this stage, he knew that selling got rougher than ever in this conservative industry. The solution was to reverse his funnels: He targeted companies tailored for the AI solution and resolved the budget cuts with innovative billings. “I told them that they could start paying us once they operationalize the solution,” he said. 

In the COVID crisis, it is also essential to re-prioritize your pipeline. Be ahead of the curve instead of chasing it. Focus on the prospects who need your solutions and tailor your value propositions to improve the sales during massive budget cuts. Be where your colleagues aren’t, and you’ll get the deals they won’t.



Over the next few months, adjusting to the new reality is still going to be a big challenge. The new ways of selling changed the buyer’s behavior that is likely to remain even after the crisis has receded. The COVID crisis affected traditional sales-processes, but it also facilitated new sales opportunities. 

Here at Enki, we can see a bright future of digital-enabled sales and want to support B2B sales. Even though the situation is tough, there are opportunities to sell and to end this crisis strongly. Our AI-based intelligent software solution helps your sales reps to prepare meetings and  to target the right business buyers. We create research tools to support B2B sales, identify potential customers, and offer solutions. 


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