That’s because 56% of those buying from B2B e-commerce sites frequently use mobile phones to view those sites.

It isn’t enough for manufacturers and other business-to-business companies to sell online anymore—they also need to be mobile-friendly, according to a new survey by Demand Gen Report

The B2B research firm’s survey of 105 buyers of B2B products and services finds that 85% of respondents say they require content on B2B sites to be optimized for mobile devices, up from 69% a year earlier.

Mobile is increasingly important for B2B sites because a lot of buyers use mobile devices to access B2B sites’ content: 56% of respondents say they frequently use mobile phones to access such content, up from 43% a year earlier, and 42% often use tablets, up from 31%.

“Marketers need to continue their efforts in adapting their content toward the mobile audience,” the report says. “This audience continues to increase at a rate where it is likely that mobile-optimized content will become not only a major priority, but the major priority for content marketers.”

B2B buyers also say less is more: 95% of respondents say they prefer short, easily digestible content, such as infographics, rather than longer-form pieces such as white papers and webinars. That may be a reflection of 72% of respondents saying they less time to devote to reading and research.

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The report also finds that B2B buyers are heavily influenced by their peers. Asked to rank the channels that influence their purchasing decisions, peer referrals was the top-ranked channel, followed by web search, industry publications and LinkedIn.

While peers influence buyers’ purchases, most respondents begin their purchasing research with a web search. Here are channels where buyers say they start their research (respondents could select more than one response):

  • General web search, 61%
  • Vendor web sites, 41%
  • Industry guides or reports, 10%
  • B2B news or media sites, 8%
  • Social media, 2%

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