Evaluating Sales Channels for Enhanced B2B Performance

Published on November 9, 2023 by Sawyer Middeleer

Evaluating Sales Channels for Enhanced B2B Performance

In the dynamic world of B2B sales, identifying and leveraging the most effective sales channels can be the difference between a stagnant pipeline and a flourishing revenue stream. The landscape is consistently evolving, and what worked yesterday may not strike the same chord today—hence, the critical need for constant evaluation and adaptation of B2B sales strategies.

Understanding B2B Sales Channels

A sales channel in the B2B context refers to the mediums through which a company communicates with and sells its products or services to other businesses. These can range from direct selling to digital marketing, partner channels, trade shows, and so forth. Evaluating these channels is about assessing their effectiveness—how well they generate leads, nurture prospects, and convert them into paying customers.

Criteria for Evaluating Sales Channels

Before diving into specific channels, let's outline the criteria for their evaluation:

  • Reach and Targeting: How effectively the channel reaches the intended target audience.
  • Conversion Rates: The propensity of leads from a channel to convert into sales.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: The ROI yielded from investing in a channel.
  • Scalability: The ability of a channel to grow with your business.
  • Alignment with Buyer Journey: How well the channel aligns with how your buyers prefer to research and purchase solutions.
  • Feedback and Analytics: The level of measurable data provided by the channel for iterative improvement.

Digital Transformation in B2B Sales Channels

In recent years, digital channels have taken precedence in B2B sales. In-depth online research, peer recommendations through social platforms, and comparisons on specialized forums have become commonplace for B2B buyers. Let's explore some of the digital channels that are being leveraged:

  • Content Marketing: This is about creating and distributing valuable, relevant content to attract and engage a clearly-defined audience, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action. Your content strategy should serve as a thought leadership tool, answering the complex questions that B2B buyers have during their decision-making process.
  • SEO and SEM: Businesses looking for B2B solutions start with search engines. Hence, having a robust SEO and SEM strategy places you in front of potential buyers when they're actively seeking solutions you offer.
  • Social Selling: Platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and industry-specific forums have become vital for connecting with potential customers, engaging in conversations, and building relationships that can translate into sales.
  • Email Marketing: Despite the rise of new technologies, email remains a powerhouse for B2B communication, nurturing leads through personalized content and offers.
  • Partnerships and Channels: Aligning with other businesses can augment reach and provide additional sales avenues. This can include resellers, affiliates, and integrations with other products or services.

Emerging Trends and Technologies

Utilizing emerging technologies and trends can give B2B companies a competitive edge:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI-driven tools are becoming popular for optimizing sales processes, personalizing customer interactions, and predicting best next actions for sales reps.
  • Data Analytics and Insights: In the data-rich sales environment of today, leveraging analytics can uncover buying patterns and preferences, informing more strategic sales approaches.
  • Account-Based Marketing (ABM): ABM focuses on engaging specific high-value accounts with personalized messages and content, aligning marketing and sales efforts for deeper penetration into target accounts.

Tracking and Measuring Success

To truly understand the effectiveness of sales channels, B2B organizations need a robust measurement framework:

  • Lead Generation Metrics: Track the volume and quality of leads each channel produces.
  • Sales Metrics: Measure the rate at which leads from each channel convert to sales, the average deal size, and length of sales cycles.
  • Customer Lifetime Value (CLV): Understand the long-term value of customers acquired through each channel.
  • Channel Attribution: Utilize technology to attribute sales accurately across different touchpoints and channels, which can be a complex endeavor in multi-channel strategies.

Navigating Challenges and Best Practices

With the growth of digital sales channels, B2B companies face challenges including increased competition, digital channel saturation, and integration of different channel activities. Best practices to navigate these challenges include:

  • Integrated Sales Strategy: A cohesive strategy that unifies different channels provides a seamless experience for customers and maximizes synergies.
  • Ongoing Sales Channel Optimization: Continually test and refine your sales channels. This involves embracing A/B testing, monitoring performance analytics, and staying abreast of industry shifts.
  • Sales and Marketing Alignment: Teams should work in lockstep to ensure messaging is consistent and efforts are not duplicated.


As the B2B sales arena becomes increasingly complex, the importance of regularly evaluating and optimizing sales channels cannot be overemphasized. Companies that adeptly manage their sales channel mix by adopting new technologies, embracing scalable digital avenues, and fine-tuning their approach based on performance analytics, will not only survive but will thrive, consistently outperforming competitors and driving enviable business growth.

Remember, evaluating your sales channels is not a 'set and forget' process; it demands continuous attention, agile adaptation, and a keen eye on both the present performance and future potential. The path to enhanced B2B performance lies in a strategic, data-informed approach to sales channel selection and optimization.


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