January 17, 2012

Marketing Research Chart: Average deal size for B2B organizations is on the decline

SUMMARY: In a struggling economy, organizations often feel pressure to accelerate sales pipelines and close deals that are currently in their systems. This week’s marketing research chart looks at the impact of this pressure on the average deal sizes of B2B companies.
by Jen Doyle, Senior Research Manager

Marketing Research Chart: Declines in average B2B deal sizes

Q. Please select the range that best represents your organization’s AVERAGE SALE AMOUNT, or average deal size per customer.

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The above chart represents respondents’ indications of average deal sizes in 2010 and 2011. The key finding from this chart is that average deal sizes have declined.

In 2010, 19% of organizations indicated average deal sizes of $1,000 - $10,000, and in 2011, this increased to nearly a third of all respondents. The percentage of organizations indicating an average deal size of less than $1,000 doubled from 2010 to 2011.

The decline of response levels indicating any deal size category over $10,000 further supports the key finding.

In a struggling economy, organizations feel the pressure to accelerate sales pipelines and close the deals that are in the system now. Organizations commonly use promotions to support these initiatives, and the effects of this tactic are present in the above chart. If organizations compete on price instead of value, they will continue to experience declining average deal sizes.

The larger the deal size, the more complex the buying process will be. Organizations with larger deal sizes, longer sales cycles, and more parties to convince, may have a greater need to establish processes for lead generation, qualification, scoring and nurturing.

Speaking of those processes, organizations in the Strategic phase of lead generation maturity – or those routinely following a formal process supported by thorough guidelines -- are the most likely to have average deal sizes greater than $50,000. By comparison, those in the Trial phase are most likely to have deal sizes under $1,000.

For additional research data and insights about B2B marketing, download and read the free Executive Summary from the MarketingSherpa 2012 B2B Marketing Benchmark Report – Research and Insights on Attracting and Converting the Modern B2B Buyer.

Useful links related to this chart

B2B E-commerce: How an online retailer garnered 100% top-line growth in its affiliate program (plus 5 more marketing channels)

B2B Marketing: 6 lessons learned in 2011 from 7 marketing experts

Marketing Research Chart: Tried-and-true tactics rank high in B2B marketing budgets

MarketingSherpa 2012 B2B Marketing Benchmark Report – Research and Insights on Attracting and Converting the Modern B2B Buyer

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