With ecommerce boom in recent years, many businesses both B2C and B2B are making the most of this digital explosion. But many B2B businesses are still falling behind when it comes to ecommerce operations. Here are the key features you need to succeed.
The B2B ecommerce industry is a growing field, one that has a lot to offer. The opportunity here lies in the fact that B2B sales was traditionally done via phone calls with sales reps and faxing in orders.
In fact, in 2018, only 11% of B2B sales were generated digitally. As more companies create B2B ecommerce sites that are optimized for sales, we’re going to see rapid growth in the B2B ecommerce industry.
Existing stores are experiencing the benefits of consistent sales, larger orders, and larger markets, and their growth is going to be exponential. For those wholesale companies that haven’t made the leap, doing so now will put them in the game early and may result in rapid growth.
In order to achieve success, B2B ecommerce retailers should focus on these 5 must-have features that buyers want to see improved and will set one ecommerce store apart from others.
1. Bulk purchasing
Businesses like to purchase in bulk in order to maintain efficiency and decrease the frequency of their orders, despite this, many online B2B ecommerce sites only offer their products at a flat rate for a specific quantity. Having options available to order at larger quantities at a discounted price prevents customers from having to contact customer service, and can increase the frequency of orders.
2. Multiple payment options
One of the quickest ways to discourage a sale is by not accepting certain types of payments. Where B2C customers may be more inclined to use multiple payment options, many companies (especially small ones) prefer to keep expenses streamlined. In order to prevent alienating potential customers, it’s important to accept a wide variety of options
3. Marketing automation
Marketing Automation is commonly found in email advertisements sent by large companies. These are the emails that have triggers (like visiting a website for the first time and receiving an email for 10% off your first purchase). These same techniques can be used for marketing automation in a B2B store. For instance, when a customer abandons their shopping cart, marketing automation software will automatically contact the customer to remind them their shopping cart isn’t empty.
4. Customer registration
It’s important for B2B ecommerce sites to offer a quick and easy way to register. Registration gives customers the opportunity to reorder previous purchases, keep track of the products they’re interested in and can give them access to product information that’s isn’t available to the public. Email, social media login, or user names and passwords are popular choices for creating accounts. As a bonus, this same information can be used in conjunction with marketing automation to keep customers informed.
5. Minimum order requirement
Wholesale businesses have to sell larger quantities to make the same return on investment that retailers do. Selling product in small quantity means there needs to be more transactions. With the lower markup that is common in wholesale, this means less money coming in. B2B ecommerce sites need to set a minimum order requirement to ensure that the business remains profitable. This is especially important with a made-to-order business model. The minimum order requirement doesn’t just apply to each individual order, but there also needs to be a minimum requirement to become a client. This can be determined by calculating your raw material cost and determining what the average profit per item should be.
Maximize your efforts by improving your store
In order to run a profitable B2B ecommerce business, it’s essential to include these 5 must-have features. While these aren’t the only factors available to help ensure that the business is successful, taking these steps can help businesses get started on a strong footing. With the rapid growth of ecommerce and more B2B clients looking for online options, this is the time to get in the game. Businesses that take advantage of this technology are going to be able to keep up with consumer demands, instead of having to catch up down the line.
Author: Gonzalo Gil is the founder and CEO of 3dcart, a leading ecommerce platform for online businesses. As an ecommerce expert, Gonzalo works with businesses of all sizes to help them build their online presence and succeed selling online.