B2B: How to Succeed in eCommerce
Areas to focus on when trying to improve B2B ecommerce profitability
Adding eCommerce to your B2B business’s offerings can seem like an overwhelming and somewhat risky move. However, the payoff could be well worth it. According to a study by Grant Thornton, B2B companies that sell online have a higher profit margin than their counterparts that choose not to do eCommerce business. However, simply adding eCommerce isn’t a guarantee that your endeavors will be profitable. First your team needs to focus on creating the right eCommerce site that will help sell your products and keep your customers coming back. Below are some important elements that you need in order to for your B2B eCommerce channel to be profitable.
Excellent Customer Experience
One of the main elements that impacts your eCommerce profitability is the customer experience that your site provides. B2C sites have set the standard with their dynamic content and ease of use. To attract customers, your B2B eCommerce site needs to also be able to offer a great experience. One way to shine is through personalization. Integrating your eCommerce with your business systems will allow you to tie customer accounts to specific data that can be displayed on the front end. When a customer logs onto your site, they should be presented with articles, information, and products that go with what they have previously search for, bought, and read. For B2B businesses, customer specific pricing is huge, and with personalization you can make sure your customers always see the right price. Personalization has been proven to encourage customers to spend by presenting them with the items that they are most interested in. Other factors that lead to a positive customer experience are intuitive navigation, enhanced search, access to self service tools, and an easy checkout process.
Unlike B2C consumers who often make purchases based on feelings and impulses, B2B buyers base their buying decisions on facts and numbers. They expect to be able to find all the necessary information directly on your eCommerce site, which means that content is an area that needs to be heavily focused on to improve profitability. Your eCommerce site needs to have helpful videos, numerous images of every product, detailed product information and specifications, as well as interesting and informative articles. Providing B2B buyers with all the information they are looking for and then some, leads to customer satisfaction and repeat orders.
Integration is another factor that can influence your B2B business’s success in the eCommerce world. Your eCommerce site needs to be seamlessly integrated with your business systems, especially your ERP and CRM solutions. Integrating with your ERP system helps keep customer order information up to date and ensures that customers are charged the correct customer specific price. It is also wise to have your site integrated with marketing automation software and shipping software, which both help you do business more efficiently.
Another major element that directly affects how well your eCommerce performs is the technology that it is built on. Using a cheap, out of the box platform can end up doing more harm than good by causing your site to crash because of its inability to scale. This leads to frustrated customers that will find a different business to buy from, leaving you with a broken site and fewer customers. Instead, the eCommerce platform that you use for your site needs to be both robust and flexible. It should be able to handle a large number of items and scale effortlessly. The platform also needs to be able to be easily customized since most B2B businesses have very specific needs. Find an proven eCommerce platform helps ensure that your site runs right all the time, leading to greater profitability.
Clarity Can Help
For nearly a decade, Clarity Ventures has been creating and implementing superb business solutions for B2B companies. Our team of highly skilled experts understands the unique challenges that B2B businesses face when adding eCommerce to their offerings. Our eCommerce platform, Clarity eCommerce, was built with B2B in mind and can be customized to work for any B2B business. To learn more about how Clarity can help your eCommerce be more profitable or to speak with an experts about adding eCommerce to your B2B business, call or click to contact us today!