This post is our effort to cover the topic why and how B2B companies should go to the online market. So if your business sells goods to other businesses this article is for you.
First of all let’s start with some generic research and figures that you probably already know. The total volume of the B2B sector in eCommerce in 2022 is 5 trillion USD (top 10 countries). A lot of B2B companies sell directly through emails, calls, etc. and don’t feel the necessity of an eCommerce platform. But according to Caterpillar Global Marketing Services Manager Renee Richardson’s research, Caterpillar understood that the B2B audience was now younger and online. Now is the new generation of Millenials (1980-1990th born) and Zoommers (youth born between mid-to-late 1990s and the early 2010s with smartphones in their hands). Most of them already take the lead position in the tech purchase sector.
89% of B2B researchers use the Internet during the B2B research process.
Modern buyers prefer to search the information about the product themselves on the Internet and they connect to the manager at the final stage only.
It’s necessary to point out that what we talk about is not about small orders only. 27% of companies in the USA mentioned that they are ready to spend more than $500K USD per 1 order.
The global B2B ecommerce market size is expected to reach $18,771.4 billion USD by 2027.
65% B2B-companies in the USA in 2022 signed the contracts online (in 2021 it was 53%);
35% B2B companies in the USA in 2022 invested in developing B2B platforms.
As Digital Commerce 360 tells, manufacturers in 2021 sold through their own platforms and increased eCommerce by 18,4% — from $458.7 billion USD to $543.25 billion USD.
The speed of growth of eCommerce for B2B sales is 1.45 times higher in comparison to the growth of all other distribution channels.
The market will be taken over by the most initiative players, and the window of possibilities will be closed.
Importance of self-service proved by survey of McKinsey & Company in November 2022:
- 72% of buyers expect online access, good channel, and good multi-channel support.
According to a survey of businesses in the USA, 83% consider self-service as one of the most important trends and it is growing.
And 70-80% buyers, responsible for B2B purchases choose remote human interactions or digital self-service.
In the US 65% of B2B brands plan to invest more in eCommerce in 2023, and expect that digital sales will take 50% of all their incomes during the next 2 years.
Summarizing, implementation of B2B Platform in eCommerce will touch many business processes, including sales and logistics, but in exchange you will get the following advantages:
Advantages of B2B portals to clients
Automatization of business
Increasing the level of service and decrease operational expenses
24/7 functionality for corporate clients, so it’s not necessary to order during business hours (especially important for international business dealing with time-zone differences)
As a result increasing the number of orders out of business hours
Increasing the middle check
The speed of orders’ processing will rise
Except increasing time of processing the orders, company essentially save time on the planning and purchase of raw-materials and it reduce the pressure on the management
Decrease number of human mistakes during making the order
Efficiency of the sales department will grow up
Expansion of geography of clients (including different time zones) and expand the client base.
Scalability of the platform (Buyers’ demand, order volume, site visits — these and many other indicators often change depending on the vendor’s marketing campaigns, seasons, market, and Black Friday preparation).
So, if earlier for the increasing sales, you had to make more calls and negotiations, now the competently built site will do the most part of your work.
The main and actual channels of promotion in the B2B segment:
– working website (including B2B portal);
– email-marketing; it’s main aim is to convert the visitors, who left their contact, into buyers or motivate them to repeat the purchase;
– social network presence; it’s one of the main methods of increasing the level of trust to the company;
– call center; confidence in 24/7 support is often the main factor during purchasing;
– event-marketing; participation in exhibitions;
– developing partnerships; exchange of clients’ bases with non-competitor businesses or reaching out to potential clients via partners;
– advertising in media and PR;
– content-marketing; creation and sharing of useful and interesting information to get more trust of potential buyers;
The decision is up to you if you prefer to build a B2B platform now when the niche is empty or in 2-3 years when the most active manufacturers and B2B players will be already riding their horses far away ahead of you.
And the last thing about B2B eCommerce is that the main barrier to further development is the low quality of B2B platforms. According to the Sana buyer report in 2022 more than 90% face problems while purchasing online. But we have a good experience launching and supporting solid, mature and scalable B2B solutions that work well, so we can consult you if it’s worth it and suggest the best options for your business. If you’re looking for a reliable and skilled B2B digital partner look no further and reach out to Anna Khazhenska (email@example.com or https://www.linkedin.com/in/anna-khazhenska/) who is responsible for B2B businesses at Eltrino or schedule the call using the calendar in the Contact Us section and just mention “B2B” in the comment. Eltrino has a proven track record of building successful eCommerce platforms for B2B businesses and we’re confident that we can effectively help to rock your B2B eCommerce.