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Here, we explain the difference between a B2B and a B2C survey
A B2B (Business to Business) survey is a survey that targets working professionals such as employees, directors, and managers. B2B surveys are aimed at a niche population i.e. B2B customers. To add to this, the B2B market is characterised by multiple decision-makers in the buying journey. Most transactions in the B2B market also take place online. According to Bigcommerce, around 61% of these transactions happen through the internet. Additionally, marketing strategies to target B2B customers are often specialised. Companies choose to partner with other B2B companies to boost their growth. They also use B2B surveys to gather intel on what their customers are looking for.
A B2B survey is targeted at business professionals exclusively. These could range from entry-level employees to C-level executives. The type of information that you get in a B2B survey will also be varied. You can source information from top-level executives and from the internal departments of a business. For example, you can get information on pricing from the finance department. Whereas, the marketing team of a company could be surveyed for information on marketing messaging and content. What’s interesting is that B2B marketing strategies have also almost shifted online. The Foundation reports that in 2021 key B2B marketing strategies were social media content (95%) and blog posts (89%).
On the other hand, a B2C survey collects data from end customers. This type of survey can be answered by the general public. Due to this, B2C surveys often cover a wider scope than B2B. The most typical kind of B2C survey is a customer feedback survey. B2C surveys look for data inputs from the final customer i.e. the one who makes the purchase decision for a product or service. Thus, B2C surveys are primarily about customer experience. If you want to learn more about B2C surveys, you can read our case study on how an education institute used these surveys to improve the student experience.
Let us now look into the differences between the two types of surveys.
For any survey, respondents need to be appropriately incentivised to complete the survey. Generally, B2B survey projects are more complicated and take time to complete. B2B survey respondents are harder to recruit due to the fact that they are fewer in number. Additionally, B2B survey respondents are often professionals who don’t have a lot of time on their hands. Whereas, due to the ease of accessing the B2C population, it’s relatively easy to complete a B2C survey. Therefore, you can choose to place a higher reward for a B2B survey project. Placing a higher reward will maximise your chances for a higher response and completion rate.
A B2C survey project can be carried out through an online survey or any other market research method. B2C customers are widely available and therefore can be accessed easily. Methods like in-person interviews or focus groups also work for B2C surveys. However, B2B surveys may need an online panel provider for good-quality survey respondents. A B2B customer may not respond as quickly as a B2C customer. This is why an option for a panel provider provides a customised pool of survey respondents. Online panel providers help get the best quality data by specifically targeting respondents. GrapeData uses the latest technology like AI and geolocation tools to pick the respondents that you need for your survey project. Using these technologies ensures that our clients get the best quality data in the quickest time.
In addition to the change in methodology, survey response rates also tend to differ between B2C and B2B projects. Firstly, B2C surveys can be sent out to a larger number of people. Consequently, the survey response rate tends to be higher for B2C projects. Secondly, B2B survey questions tend to be more complex. As a result, it takes longer for a professional, who already has less time, to complete the survey. Thirdly, B2B professionals don’t tend to check their inboxes for survey projects. A B2C customer, looking to earn some extra money, might be on the lookout for online surveys. Therefore, due to these reasons survey response rates tend to be lower for B2B projects.
You would think that B2B survey projects would be less costly compared to B2C. However, sometimes this is not the case as B2B surveys require follow-up calls. Due to the complexity of the survey project, you may need to contact B2B professionals again for more information. Additionally, due to the higher reward placed for B2B projects, they might be more costly. Ultimately, the cost for each survey project will differ according to the nature and time constraints involved.
Business professionals are often active online during working hours. Therefore, they are more likely to open emails or messages during this time. If you are conducting a B2B survey, you might need to think about the timings of your email or survey communications. However, the timing would be a less important factor for B2C surveys.
Similar to response rates, the survey population size will also tend to be low for B2B surveys. Since the B2C population size is already large, the B2C survey sample size will also be larger. B2C populations would also tend to be more willing to participate in surveys for rewards. Whereas, B2B populations are already smaller than B2C. The survey sample size would also tend to be smaller than B2C. To add to this, the more complex the industry for the survey project is the lesser the sample size becomes. Overall, B2B surveys tend to have smaller sample sizes due to these reasons.
Since B2B and B2C surveys form a crucial part of market research, online panel providers are a popular approach for them. Survey panel providers act as a medium between the company needing the market research and the survey respondents. There are several advantages to survey panel providers. Below, we discuss some of these advantages:
In this post, we defined B2B and B2C surveys and explored the difference between the two. B2B surveys involve multiple decision makers; whereas B2C surveys target the end customer. In general, the B2C population is larger than B2B and hence more accessible to administer surveys. Due to the niche nature of the B2B market, these surveys face many challenges. Some of these challenges include finding B2B survey respondents and incentivising them appropriately to answer questions. However, online panel providers like GrapeData can help facilitate this process. They work to ensure that only the best quality B2B and B2C survey respondents are chosen for a project. Additionally, services like survey programming and scripting, and geolocation technology help find these high-quality respondents.