Differences of Sales Portals and B2B Commerce Websites
Comparing sales options for business to business companies
There is an old saying that goes “there is more than one way to skin a cat.” This phrase can also be applied to sales. There are numerous ways that business can go about marketing and selling their products and services to their customers. Two of the most common ways for business to business companies to go about it are to use a sales portal or employ a b2b eCommerce website. Both are able to get the job done, but one may work better than the other depending on your business, employees and clients.
A sales portal is an online interface that contains information and tools that are useful, especially to your sales team, but also to the rest of your employees as well. The goal of a sales portal is to enable your sales force to better and more effectively inform and sell to your clients and customers.
Features of Sales Portals
Depending on how your sales portal is built, you can have many different features. With a sales portal you are able to control who sees what content. Search, sales, marketing, and social media tools are also some important features in most sales portals. Some portals even allow you to create small stores within your portal for your customers that can be customized with their logos, specific pricing, easy reorder options, and information that is pertinent to them.
Pros of Sales Portals
One of the biggest benefits of using a sales portal is being able to access all of your sales collateral and tools in one place. If a sales person is looking for a specific piece of marketing material, they can easily find it without having to ask the marketing team to send it to them, interrupting and slowing both of their tasks. Another positive is that you can customize the portal to your specifications. You can also store more sensitive and extensive information in a sales portal because your staff is usually the only people that have access to it.
Cons of Sales Portals
Sales portals do rely on marketers to keep adding and updating information, so if you don’t have a strong marketing team, your sales portal won’t be as beneficial. To make the sales portal work, sales people must actually visit it often and pass on the information from it. If your sales team doesn’t know how to use the sales portal or doesn’t take full advantage of the it and all of the tools it has to offer, then it is not going to have an impact on your sales.
B2B eCommerce Websites
Business to Business (B2B) eCommerce sites are publicly facing websites where companies can buy products or services from another company online. They are usually a combination of a content management system and an eCommerce platform.
Features of B2B eCommerce Sites
B2B eCommerce websites can have numerous different features depending on the type of business that is being done. Some of the possible features of a site include user registration, real time inventory, product catalog, customer specific pricing, and dealer locators.
Pros and Cons of B2B eCommerce Sites
A positive of using an eCommerce website is the fact that all of your information is consistent. What one client sees or reads on your website is the exact same thing that the next client will, unless they are logged in and have content specific to their account, such as customer specific pricing. Additionally, anyone is able to visit your website, not just your employees that have access to it or the business that you have created a store for, which means you can drive new customers to the site with SEO. A good eCommerce platform is built with SEO in mind. The eCommerce site could also be customized, but it cannot be as highly customized as a sales portal. One of the negatives of an eCommerce site is that it is harder to cater to each specific client, what everyone else sees is generally what they see. All of the processes are standard and not adjustable for each and every visitor.
Clarity Can Help
At Clarity, we know full well that there is one than one way to get a task accomplished. Our team of developers is highly skilled at solving business problems for our clients with high tech customized solutions. We have built numerous sales portals and b2b eCommerce sites for many of our clients, and would love to build a custom solution for your business. To find out more about sales portals and the other services that Clarity offers, call or click to contact us today!