The B2B eCommerce market was valued at $14.9 trillion in 2020, an amount that is five times bigger than the B2C market. And with the number of business buyers choosing to shop online, that number is expected to reach new heights in the coming years.
With its expected growth, selling in a B2B eCommerce platform is an excellent way of earning profits. As long as you're able to secure new buyers, provide the best online experience to them, and master the sales process of this model, you'll have better chances of succeeding as an entrepreneur.
If you're wondering what B2B eCommerce is - how it works and how you can market yours - you've come to the right place. This article will provide in-depth information on everything you need to know about B2B eCommerce. By the end of this article, you'll have better insight into B2B eCommerce and knowledge that we hope can fuel your business endeavors.
What is B2B eCommerce?
B2B eCommerce, or business-to-business electronic commerce, is the sale of goods and services using a specific eCommerce platform between businesses. In short, B2B eCommerce involves a company selling products or services to another company. Since the process is automated as everything is done through digital channels, parties involved experience better buying efficiency with just a few clicks.
Unlike B2C eCommerce, B2B businesses were slow to adopt eCommerce. According to a report, only 9% of the total B2B US product sales took place in a B2B eCommerce platform before the pandemic hit. Things significantly changed during the pandemic as more and more business customers expected their favorite brands to be available online.
Accelerated by COVID and propelled by SaaS, B2B eCommerce is forecasted to reach $18.57 trillion in 2026. Additionally, B2B companies are allocating more resources to improve their payment options, customer service, security, and customer experience, which means that the B2B eCommerce market will have plenty more to offer in the future.
Presently, B2B eCommerce has become more diverse than ever. Today, we can find countless B2B companies selling a wide range of services, such as human resources, accounting, and legal, to physical products, like pet supplies, furniture, and consumer goods.
What Are The Different Types of B2B eCommerce?
According to Gartner, 80% of B2B sales transactions between suppliers and buyers will occur on eCommerce platforms by 2025. Moreover, newer technologies are being developed and used to reduce the barriers to entry for B2C businesses, allowing B2B companies to sell direct-to-consumer or B2B2C.
If you're planning to take part in the growth of B2B eCommerce, it's essential to know how different eCommerce models are categorized. Each type of eCommerce B2B has its own set of pros and cons, and being equipped with this information will help you determine which type matches your current resources and business goals.
B2B2C stands for business-to-business-to-consumer. In this eCommerce model, the intermediaries between the B2B company and B2C are out of the picture as the businesses have direct contact with the consumers. One way to better describe this model is by looking at how a manufacturer or wholesaler interacts with traditional B2C and B2B models.
In cases like these, the manufacturer or wholesaler sends products to the B2B company, which are immediately sold to the final consumers. In the B2B2C model, manufacturers or wholesalers reach the final consumers by partnering or working with B2B companies or directly selling goods to the consumers. These transactions happen online through personalized sales portals, an online store, or an eCommerce website.
In B2B2C models, consumers know that they're buying products from a company that's different from where they purchased them. For instance, someone might buy a product from an affiliate seller online, but the product is branded under a different name and is sent by a different manufacturer to their address.
- Revenue for all parties: This eCommerce model guarantees greater sales for all the parties involved. B1 gains access to prospects (which they can eventually nurture and convert into paying customers), while B2 earns commissions and profits by offering more products to existing customers.
- Lower overhead costs: Parties involved in this business model can split costs in logistics, payment fees, and many others. This results in cheaper costs per company, making this model an ideal option for businesses with limited financial resources.
- Brand associations: Forging with well-established market and enterprise brands enables your business to gain credibility fast. Having a positive brand in the eyes of your target audience makes it easier for you to gain customer data, acquire more customers, reach out to more customer groups, and expand your online store.
- Negative brand associations: Working with a brand that doesn't possess credibility and legitimacy will adversely affect how the general public sees your business. With this in mind, make sure to conduct thorough research before choosing your business partners. You want to work with companies that can catapult your business into long-term success, not one that will prevent you from achieving it.
- Expensive marketing costs: With the B2B2C model, you need to market to business buyers and consumers at the same time. This usually means creating and implementing different marketing campaigns for different audiences - initiatives that will require a lot of time, money, and effort from your business.
- Lesser control over user experience: Quality of service, price, and distribution channels are controlled by different parties, not your business only. If you want to embrace a B2B2C model and guarantee success, you must develop strict quality control to ensure that your customers still get the best personalized customer experience.
It's common for consumers to buy products in bulk to cut costs. The same happens in wholesale eCommerce - B2B companies purchase goods in bulk at a lower price and sell them at retail value to earn profits. This eCommerce model can also be described as selling products to other businesses.
Among all the B2B eCommerce models, wholesale eCommerce is one of the most common. It's used in countless industries, namely construction, food, medical, and many others. Traditionally, wholesale customers transact over the phone, through email, through an eCommerce store, or an online sales portal. Some parts of the sales processes of this business model also involve the use of forms online.
Everything is displayed in a B2b eCommerce platform with wholesale eCommerce. A wholesale eCommerce platform allows businesses to offer automated sales processes, resulting in a better, more seamless customer experience.
- Save money: Buying a large volume of products help you save money because you usually get discounts. This is known as wholesale pricing. Wholesale prices allow you to gain more profit as the retail price of products is higher.
- Establish expertise: Regardless if you're going to sell party supplies, furniture, cookware, or electronics, you'll have to conduct in-depth market research before diving into this eCommerce model. As a result, you'll acquire in-depth information about your target market, which can help empower your sales reps and help you make better business decisions in the future.
- Build a strong network: Working with suppliers is an excellent avenue for you to foster strong relationships with other players in the industry. Finding and partnering with suppliers is challenging at first, but when done successfully, it can help establish your brand in the supply chain. Building a solid network can help your business stand out in today's ever-competitive eCommerce market.
- Requires ample warehouse space: Since you'll be buying many products at once, you need a spacious warehouse to store your goods. This requirement can pose problems, especially for businesses that are still new in the market and still don't have sufficient financial resources to lease or buy a warehouse.
- Inventory risk: Buying and storing products will require you to spend resources on a decent inventory management tool. Depending on the size of your business and your target customers, you must also exert time and effort to train a sales rep or your entire sales team in using your preferred inventory management tool.
- Capital is crucial: With the number of products you have to pay, tools to invest in, and warehouse to lease or rent, you need to have a hefty amount of money to start as a wholesaler in the B2B eCommerce market. Not having any sufficient capital can snowball into bigger problems, affecting your ability to take on better, bigger business opportunities in the future.
Manufacturers use manual labor and machines to produce finished products. In a B2B model like this, the finished products are sold to suppliers, wholesalers, or other manufacturers.
One good example of manufacturers operating in B2B eCommerce is the automobile industry. Manufacturers create a wide variety of car parts, such as batteries, exhaust pipes, and mufflers, and then sell them to automotive companies. These companies build cars using the products from the manufacturers and sell vehicles to different customer groups.
Like wholesalers are involved in online transactions, the same goes for manufacturers. Manufacturers now rely on the World Wide Web for different purposes. Manufacturers around the globe are using an eCommerce website to provide existing buyers with the information they need about particular products and create a solid online shopping experience for prospects.
- Produce large quantities at lower cost: Instead of producing products that require different parts, manufacturers produce goods in bulk without relying too much on extensive human labor. This results in lower labor costs, higher profit margins, and greater efficiency.
- Easier inventory tracking: As long as processes are in place to oversee your manufacturing efforts, you can easily monitor the stock levels of your raw materials and determine if any are running low. Having access to this information can improve the productivity levels of the managers and workers on the production floor and lessens downtime.
- Make allocating costs easier: When you know the quantities of your raw materials, and when they're going to run out, you won't have any problems allocating costs long-term. This also helps your managers plan how they will make changes whenever needed.
- Finding customers: Finding your customers can be challenging when you're a manufacturer. Since you're producing and selling products in bulk, you need to exert more effort in finding companies who will use and incorporate your products into their own.
- Building an online audience: Countless manufacturers sell online today. With this status quo, you need to use strategies to create an online audience and gain profits. This will usually require you to invest in an eCommerce site, embrace Search Engine Optimization or SEO, and be present in different online marketplaces.
- Costly start-up: Manufacturing is an expensive business endeavor. As mentioned, you'll be producing products in bulk, which will require costly materials and equipment. This still doesn't include the costs of starting an online store and your digital marketing initiatives.
One of two things can happen after products go through manufacturers. One, manufacturers can directly sell the products to the end customers. This option gives manufacturers more control over their sales process as fewer parties are involved. The downside of this option is that manufacturers will have to accomplish other responsibilities on their own, namely updating their inventories, packing orders, and implementing marketing messaging initiatives.
A manufacturer's second option is to partner with a distributor who can sell their products on their behalf. This option will require both parties to work closely with each other to gain better visibility of the products they're producing and selling, with the common goal of increasing profit and moving the products faster in the distribution channel.
In an eCommerce model, the logistics of sales between manufacturers and distributors occur online, usually using an online sales portal or a B2B eCommerce platform. Aside from creating better and more opportunities for business growth, using the platforms enables distributors to shorten the lead time between sales and delivery. As a result, they can provide the best customer experience that surpasses customer expectations.
There is a huge potential for distributors in today's B2B eCommerce market. Take a look at online marketplaces, such as Amazon and Walmart. These eCommerce platforms allow distributors to sell different products online.
- Eliminates intermediary expenses: You'll eliminate intermediary expenses when you use direct distribution instead of working with a manufacturer. Working with an intermediary, such as a manufacturer, will require you to pay commissions and service costs. Service costs usually include shipment to the intermediary, providing marketing materials to them, and training them to sell your products.
- Increases customer engagement: Without any intermediaries in the picture, you'll be able to have direct contact with your customers, resulting in better customer engagement. This opportunity enables you to offer better customer support (as you'll know what your customers want from your brand) and address complaints or questions quickly.
- Gives you more control: You'll have better control of your sales channel when you decide to sell directly to customers. You can choose how your products are packaged, marketed, and delivered. You won't experience these things when you choose to work with a manufacturer or display your products in retail stores.
- Lesser distribution channel options: One of the biggest challenges of selling directly as a distributor is losing the distribution channels offered by intermediaries. The lesser places you sell, the more challenging it can be for existing and new customers to reach you. This can result in lesser sales and limited customer reach.
- Increases internal workload: Being an expert in producing different products doesn't make you a pro in accomplishing other tasks involved in the sales process. When you choose to sell direct, expect that you have to take on all the responsibilities your intermediaries will achieve for you. These responsibilities include taking orders, marketing products, offering customer service, and following up with late-paying customers.
- Increases fulfillment costs: Selling direct usually means bigger fulfillment costs. This happens because selling direct will require you to cover different expenses, such as the maintenance of your eCommerce site, postage and shipping expenses, and credit card processing fees.
What Are The Stages of Starting a B2B eCommerce?
Once you've chosen an eCommerce model to adopt, it's time to learn how you can get that business off the ground. This information is crucial to your success, as it will help you determine what to do (or not to do) next. This information will also help you navigate through challenges in the future.
Starting a B2B eCommerce business is like taking care of a child - both require a lot of your time and effort to grow and mature, especially during the first five years. The resources you'll allocate to your B2B eCommerce business can significantly impact its longevity and success in the long run.
This section will discuss the different stages of starting a B2B eCommerce business and the challenges you'll encounter at every stage.
Your B2B eCommerce business will start with an idea for a product or service and turn it into a money-generating business. This idea is usually fueled by an inconvenience or problem you consistently experience in your day-to-day life.
At this stage, you've probably concluded that other people have the same dilemma as you, which is why you want to launch your brand. At this point, you have already finished creating your product or service and have marketed it to your social circle.
During the new or startup stage, your sales are usually slim but slowly increasing. You juggle your time and energy between reaching out to newer, broader customer segments while adjusting your marketing initiatives and offerings based on the initial feedback you received from your first customers.
Here are some of the most common challenges you'll encounter during the new or startup phase:
- Establishing a solid market presence, especially if you decide to sell products or services to a highly saturated niche or industry.
- Finding and engaging with a target audience as you're still testing the waters on how your products or services appeal to a specific market.
- Standing out from the competition because well-established B2B eCommerce companies probably operate in the same industry as you. Some of your competitors might have become household brands, making it very challenging for you to gain traction.
- Managing financial resources because you'll have to pay for different expenses, namely setting up your web store, paying for a B2B eCommerce platform, and hiring sales reps. This can create problems, especially if your finances are scarce.
Once you've launched your product or service and started earning profits, you'll move into the growth or survival phase. This is one of the most challenging phases of starting a B2B eCommerce business, as your performance here dictates the longevity and lifespan of your business.
During this phase, your business has already survived the breakeven point as you start to gain more profits but not as high as your sales level. As your B2B eCommerce business starts to gain more business customers and earn better revenues, you'll be able to afford to pay for operating expenses and take on new business opportunities.
However, you'll also bring in or attract more competition during the growth stage. This is the best time to revisit your existing eCommerce model and work on different areas of the business, namely your sales channels, sales rep, inventory management, and other business processes.
You'll likely come across the following challenges once your B2B eCommerce business hits the growth phase:
- Handling more customers, usually from different customer segments. This can pose challenges as you need to cater to their unique demands without compromising other areas of the business.
- Manage revenues and ensure that these are recorded and utilized efficiently. Earning a large revenue can be overwhelming, putting you at risk of making the wrong decisions involving your business's money.
- Increased competition, requiring you to improve your existing marketing initiatives or invest in newer campaigns. During this time, you might even have to allocate resources to learn and use digital marketing to get ahead of the competition.
After successfully establishing a brand in the B2B eCommerce market, you'll likely experience a continuous flow of revenue. This will enable you to sell your products and services to newer target audiences and utilize more distribution channels.
However, your growth during this phase will likely start to dwindle as new players enter the business arena and steal your market share. During this time, well-established brands will begin to offer improved products and services as a response to newer players in the market. These can prevent your B2B eCommerce business from consistently earning business customers and generating revenues.
To ensure that your B2B eCommerce continues to grow, you need to gain more market share and invest in other sources of income, such as reaching out to new buyers, selling through different online stores, and offering new products and services.
During the expansion phase, the following challenges could arise:
- Increased competition due to the entry of new players and offerings of your existing competitors.
- Creation of new products and services for your B2B eCommerce business to stay relevant in the industry. Since the competition has become tougher, it's crucial that you offer something new to retain old customers and attract new ones.
- Expansion into new markets might allow your business to gain more customers, but the process entails a lot of challenges. You must address cultural differences, invest in different payment providers, and develop a market entry strategy.
- Maintaining your existing B2B eCommerce business as you address the challenges mentioned above can be tricky. You must ensure that all areas of your existing B2B eCommerce business continue operating efficiently as you offer your products and services to new markets.
When your B2B eCommerce business reaches maturity, it has already climbed to the top of the market. During this phase, your business continues to dominate and expand but not at the same rate as the company was still at the expansion stage. Your profit margins will also become thinner when your business hits its maturity.
At this point, you have two options on how you can proceed with your B2B eCommerce business: you can either create an exit strategy or reinvent your business in the market. When you choose the latter, you must embrace digital transformation to improve your sales processes and your online store and explore new markets to offer your products and services.
Investing in newer technologies and reaching out to new markets are keys to extending the life cycle and success of your B2B eCommerce business. You'll also have to consistently look at what your competitors are doing and develop strategies to help your business stand out.
Hitting the maturity phase is a milestone for your B2B eCommerce business but will require you to address these challenges:
- Saturated markets can prevent your business from hauling in more customers and earning more profits as it becomes a roadblock for your expansion. When markets are too saturated with products and services similar to what your B2B eCommerce business is offering, it'll be very challenging for you to create a lasting brand.
- Exploring new markets will require time and effort from your business as you must conduct in-depth research to acquire customer data. This information is essential in creating new products and services and determining which marketing initiatives will appeal to your new unique audience.
- Creating an exit strategy is time-consuming and stressful because you'll need to prepare your finances, speak with other investors (if there are any), and inform your customers and employees. You must also learn to set aside your emotions to make data-driven decisions.
If you're determined to start a B2B eCommerce business soon, make sure that you're well-equipped with the business's life cycle and already have solutions to the challenges that will arise. When you're prepared, your B2B eCommerce business will have better chances of succeeding!
How Can You Market Your B2B eCommerce?
Marketing your B2B eCommerce business should be on top of your list when you decide to start one. A robust marketing plan helps different customer groups learn more about your products, services, and brand. It also helps foster customer loyalty and influences their buying decisions.
Regardless of what your B2B eCommerce business is selling - whether pet supplies, furniture, or gadgets - there are plenty of ways to market it. As long as you're consistent with the marketing plan you choose to use, it won't be long before your business attains success.
Inform Customers on Products, Features, and Promotions
Customers will choose your competitors over you if they don't know what your business sells. No one wants to spend their hard-earned money on a product or service they're unfamiliar with.
One way to market your B2B eCommerce business is to inform customers about what you're offering. Aside from educating different customer groups on what your business is selling, advise them on how your offerings can impact their businesses. This will make it easier for your customers to envision themselves using your products or services and see their relevance to their day-to-day operations.
For example, if you're offering human resources services to other businesses, indicate how the service can improve the productivity and efficiency of a company. You can also highlight how outsourcing such service from your business helps companies cut down on recruitment, training, and onboarding expenses.
Utilize Technology to Solve Customers’ Common Pain Points
Technology can become your biggest ally when it comes to marketing your B2B eCommerce business. Investing in the right technologies can also help your business level out the playing field, especially if you're operating in a highly saturated industry.
For instance, you can feature cloud computing and storage on top of your products and services. These technologies will benefit your business customers regardless of which industry they operate in. You can also offer personalized checkout experiences to ensure customers can easily purchase products and services from your website.
Since there are plenty of technologies you can possibly invest in, narrow down your options by looking into the common pain points of your customers. Choose technologies that can help solve these pain points and improve the operations of your business customers.
Create and Maintain an eCommerce Website
Gone are the days when websites are considered a luxury among businesses. In today's tech-driven business landscape, having a functional and appealing website is a must for all types of businesses, including B2B eCommerce businesses.
Your website holds the door to your conversion funnel, which means that not having one will prevent customers from knowing your brand and buying your products and services. How can they patronize something they don't know anything about?
In general, creating an eCommerce website involves the following steps:
Step 1: Choose an eCommerce platform
You can choose from three different types of eCommerce platforms today: open source, SaaS, or headless commerce. Open source platforms offer source codes freely to anyone who wants to use them, while SaaS, or Software as a Service, is an eCommerce platform provided as a subscription service. On the other hand, Headless eCommerce keeps the display layer of an eCommerce site and shopping cart separate.
When choosing an eCommerce platform, carefully weigh your options, and don't forget to look into the drawbacks of each. All of these eCommerce platforms allow you to sell online, but each has different features to offer. Look into these features to choose a platform that meets your needs.
Step 2: Purchase a domain name
The domain name of your eCommerce website is crucial because it gives credibility to your business and puts you in the same online marketplaces as your competitors. Your domain name makes it easy for potential and existing customers to find you online.
The key to choosing an effective domain name is avoiding creative spelling and generic names. The simpler and shorter your domain name is, the better.
Step 3: Choose your eCommerce template
Even if you don't have any coding skills, you can still customize your website to represent your brand better. Since there are plenty of templates available for use today, make sure to pick one that offers seamless customer navigation and suits your brand.
It's also important to use an eCommerce template that allows you to easily customize different areas of the website. For instance, you should be able to embed your brand's social media pages on the website and set the font colors and styles that reflect your brand.
Step 4: Add products
Product pages play an important role in your website because it shows your customers what you're selling. Aside from using high-quality images of your products, ensure to include short but informative product descriptions. These descriptions should consist of the measurements, usefulness, and colors of your products.
Using well-written product descriptions on your website improves the platform's search engine optimization or SEO ranking by allowing bots to index your page. As a result, your website will appear on top of the Search Engines Results Pages or SERPs.
Step 5: Pick payment providers
It's best if you choose a payment provider that offers a straightforward process. Payment methods that are too complicated or long are usually reason enough for a customer to abandon your website.
In worse cases, using overly complicated payment providers on your website will adversely affect your branding, which can shoo away potential customers.
Step 6: Decide on your shipping settings
Customers want to experience the most hassle-free shipping when buying products online, which is why you should offer one that's seamless. Your business won't be able to earn profits from customers if your shipping takes too much time.
Ideally, you should have a shipping policy and display it on your website. Are you offering free shipping to new customers, or do you require a variable fee? Are you going to ship locally or internationally? You should have answers to these questions before setting up your website.
Step 7: Preview, test, and publish your eCommerce site
Your website will only gain traction if everything on it works perfectly. A single broken link and an unappealing webpage can drive customers away.
Before you publish your website and announce it to the general public, take the time to test it first. You should ensure that the checkout option works and the links you've embedded on each page. You should also consider how your website works when accessed from different browsers and devices.
Take note of the problems you encounter when you test your website and fix them right away. Never publish a website when it still has issues thinking that your business customers will not notice it because they do. And when this happens, they'll likely choose to purchase products and services from a B2B eCommerce business with a functional website.
Maximize Online Channels or Platforms
Having a strong online presence is an excellent way of marketing your B2B eCommerce business to buyers. It'll be easier to reach out and engage with your target market if your business is accessible online.
Aside from offering a high-quality website to your business buyers, you can also utilize the following online channels or platforms to market your business:
- FAQs: One of the reasons why some businesses are hesitant to buy from your business is because they still have questions about your offerings. Instead of letting them call your sales rep and wait for a couple of hours to get an answer to a simple question, include an FAQ page on your website. This will give customers the answers they're looking for fast and reduce frustrations and delays.
- How-to guides: Ordering from a B2B eCommerce company can be challenging for first-time business owners. You can make the process easier by offering how-to guides on your website. Besides covering the entire order process, your how-to guides can also tackle steps in bulk ordering or selecting specific products on your website. These guides will attract new buyers and encourage them to buy from your web store ASAP.
- Interactive navigations: Incorporate interactive navigations to help prospects use your eCommerce platform properly. For example, if you want candidates to visit one of your social media platforms, include clear visuals on how they can find and click the link. If you want to encourage them to use your mobile ordering system, add a video on how to use the platform on your website.
Implement Programs That Encourage Brand Loyalty
Having business customers buy from you once isn't enough to secure your position in the B2B eCommerce market; you need to foster loyalty to ensure they'll continue patronizing your offerings. When your customers are loyal to you, they'll choose your business over your competitors.
You can implement different programs to encourage brand loyalty among your business customers. You can start by featuring them in your online content (posting their pictures and reviews about your product or service), offer exclusive perks (special discounts on new products and services), or develop a loyalty program (where they can earn and use points to purchase).
Implementing programs that encourage brand loyalty will keep your existing customers and encourage them to market your B2B eCommerce business on your behalf. When you consistently offer new and exciting perks to your existing customers, they'll share the good news with other business owners. These individuals will become curious about your offerings and will eventually decide to buy from you.
What Are The Most Common Misconceptions About B2B eCommerce?
Numbers don't lie - B2B is going digital. Although the transition isn't as fast as B2C, it won't be long before the B2B eCommerce market will fully operate using different online eCommerce platforms.
Although B2B eCommerce is growing and will continue to grow, there are still a lot of misconceptions surrounding the industry. If you're going to dive into the industry soon, it's essential to differentiate facts from fiction.
B2B Customers Don’t Want to Order Online
As younger generations attain purchasing and managerial power in the 21st century, their preferred method of buying will soon surpass older processes. In fact, B2B customers want to experience the same convenience in buying products and services as they do in B2C transactions.
Ordering Online Is Cold
It's easy for brick-and-mortar store owners to foster a healthy relationship with their customers because they get to see them in person. Face-to-face interaction is absent in B2B eCommerce, but this doesn't mean that the entire buying experience will be cold for the customers.
B2B eCommerce can use technology to build strong, healthy relationships with its customers. For example, you can incorporate 24/7 chat technology into your website to ensure that customers get answers to their questions within minutes. According to research, having a slow site response time is one of the biggest complaints of a B2B buyer when ordering online.
Improving your response time is an excellent way of building healthy relationships with your customers, even if you don't get to see them face-to-face. Ignore this issue, and you'll lose the chance to connect with your customers.
Online Stores Negate Custom Ordering
Contrary to popular belief, you can still get and provide a personalized customer experience in the B2B eCommerce market. For example, you can use custom quoting tools to send personalized quotes to your customers depending on their unique needs and budget.
The digital transformation in the B2B eCommerce market allows business owners to use technologies that provide a unique experience to different customer groups.
Customers Are Not Willing and Ready to Make Big Purchases Online
Buying online is risky, but nowadays, that fear has almost become non-existent.
With the number of products and services being sold online today, it's no surprise that well-established companies worldwide are now willing to spend thousands or even millions of dollars in a single online transaction.
Because of this, it's safe to say that B2B eCommerce isn't just for repeat and low-value purchases - it has opened opportunities for businesses to make huge sales and purchases.
What Are The Pros and Cons Of B2B eCommerce?
The idea of selling products and services to other companies through different digital channels is exciting for many. However, before you enter the industry as a B2B2C, wholesaler, distributor, or manufacturer, it's essential to see the bigger picture and consider the opportunities and risks involved.
Yes, there is a huge opportunity to earn and become an established business in the B2B eCommerce market, but remember that countless challenges are also present.
This section will list some of the pros and cons of starting a B2B eCommerce business. Use the information here to manage your expectations and create a better business plan, one that can help you navigate through the challenges in the industry.
As a B2B eCommerce, all of your sales channels will be available and completed online. This ensures convenience for you and your customers because they can place an order regardless of location. Using eCommerce platforms is also convenient as you get to market your products fast and engage with different customers worldwide.
Better chances of earning more
B2B eCommerce companies usually sell products in bulk, so their business customers can get better prices and restock less often. Adapting the same principle in your own business enables you to earn more. Plus, when you reach out to more customers (thanks to the power of the internet), you'll be able to convert more individuals into paying customers, resulting in higher revenues.
Huge market potential
B2B eCommerce companies can target different companies operating in different industries - from consumer goods and consulting services to automobile parts and specialized machinery. This enables you to make money regardless of the industry you plan to enter.
Contracts are essential in B2B eCommerce, which helps protect the buyers and sellers. This industry also relies on eCommerce platforms where sales are tracked digitally, making transactions more secure and easy to monitor for all the parties involved.
Better data analytics
Data analytics lets you track customer behavior as they shop in your web store. This information will help you determine which among your existing strategies are working, which ones need improvement, and which ones should be tossed. This will help you make better business decisions, use resources appropriately, and offer a better online experience.
Complex setup process
Starting a B2B eCommerce business isn't a walk in the park because you need to figure out how to get customers and keep them long-term. To accomplish these tasks, you must conduct thorough research to better understand the market and what your customers expect from your business and advertise your offerings to potential companies.
Requires special ordering experience
Your website should have an ordering system that's easy to use and accessible across different devices. This process will require you to highlight product and service information clearly on your website and use order forms that work well on smartphones and desktop computers.
Need for B2B sellers to stand out
The B2B eCommerce market is overflowing with new players and established companies selling similar products and services. To stand out, you need to come up with and implement strategies that are unique or have never been used by other businesses.
Failure to accomplish this task will put your business in the shadows of your competitors. When this happens, you'll have difficulty gaining customers and earning revenues.
Starting a B2B eCommerce business is an excellent way of earning money and achieving financial independence. However, remember that your business needs to go through and survive several phases before completing those goals.