B2B e-commerce

B2B e-commerce is becoming increasingly visible to the outside world. Whereas websites initially focused only on B2C, more and more companies realize that B2B is also a very important market. B2C e-commerce is promoted a lot in the media, however the volume of the B2B market is four times as large. B2B e-commerce can be seen as something completely different than B2C e-commerce. Some companies make the mistake of adding a few buttons to their commercial website to create a B2B website. However, it is important to take into account that B2B buyers are very different from the B2C consumer. In this article we would like to explain it to you.

The difference between a B2B and B2C customer

The main criteria by which you can distinguish a B2B and B2C customer is the purpose of the purchase. B2B buyers have a different motivation, a different goal and search for a different product when they go searching on the internet. B2B buyers are professionals and often buy for large amounts and come back frequently to buy products. The main differences are listed in the table below.

B2B

B2C

Makes decisions for the company
Independent buyer
Large orders
Small orders
Customer-oriented prices
Fixed prices
Buys regularly 
Buys less regularly
Purchases are part of the work
Purchases for personal reasons
Purchases in a specific market
Purchases in all markets
Search by product number
Search by product

What can I do to perform good B2B e-commerce?

  • Choose the right software
    This may sound obvious but good B2B webshop software is an essential basis for the proper execution of e-commerce. The software you choose must be able to connect well with your other business processes. Magento is one of the most well-known and popular software for building webshops. Because Magento is open-source, it is continuously being developed by developers worldwide. As a result, there are also many options that allow you to personalize the B2B webshop according to your wishes. Magento 1 and 2 have been available for some time and are often used by B2B companies.
  • Design your webshop for your target group
    As you know, your customer is a professional buyer. As the table above shows this means that they have different needs. What is very important is that you have insight into these needs. If you know what your target group is looking for and prefer, you can set up the webshop accordingly. Continue to research your target group, ask them for tips regularly and pay close attention to your webshop data. This way you contribute to conversion optimisation which can mean positive results for your turnover.
  • Product descriptions
    A very important aspect of a good webshop is that the products you sell on it have product descriptions. This makes you better found in Google. It also makes sure that you give more context to the different products in the webshop and helps customers who are still orientating.

Benefits of good B2B e-commerce

Automated order processing
Because your webshop can be linked to all your business processes such as administration, the entire order process is automatic. This way the payment is made automatically, the stock is replenished automatically, the customer is automatically informed and your administration is kept up to date. Unlike manual order processing, this process does not need to be repeated with every sale.

Complete assortment online
Because the entire product range can easily be put online you always have an up-to-date and complete overview of your products. The advantage of this is that adjustments can be made quickly and that your customers have insight into your offer.

24/7 online self-service
Thanks to a B2B webshop customers can easily orientate themselves without being tied to opening hours. Further, the customers can easily proceed to make a purchase thanks to the self-service properties of the webshop. Research has even shown that B2B buyers have the need to be able to buy online. The top 3 reasons were convenience (72%), not having to wait for a sales employee (52%) and having insight into stock and delivery times (42%).

More/easier sales
If you provide sufficient information and product descriptions along with the products in the webshop, the sale can be carried out by the customer. This ensures that you have less effort handling the sale and it offers the buyer a channel to take control of the sale. Offering your products in a webshop will increase your total sales.

Competitive
Because the B2B sector is still somewhat behind B2C e-commerce you can take advantage. Look closely at competitors and what they do well to be able to respond to this. More and more B2B companies are already or are going to response to B2B e-commerce.

The B2B e-commerce facts

Research about B2B e-commerce shows interesting results. If you are still in doubt about B2B e-commerce or its power you might want to read the following data:

Jelba’s research shows that there is an increasing need for e-commerce. 72% of respondents said e-commerce is very important for their digital transformation. 75% of those surveyed who already conduct B2B e-commerce said they were planning an upgrade soon. Customer experience is something that is taken very seriously in e-commerce. 87% of companies surveyed indicated that the software of their e-commerce system should be customer friendly. But what about the turnover? On average, companies have a ROI (return on investment) within 1 year. 91% indicated that their e-commerce activities contribute to a better efficiency of sales.

These figures indicate that many B2B companies already take e-commerce very seriously. In order not to fall behind competitors it is important to respond quickly and to keep up with the developments within e-commerce.

Your B2B e-commerce success

We at Jelba specialize in the B2B sector. We believe and have proven that online activities are hugely important to the B2B sector. But doing online activities well, including B2B e-commerce, is not always easy. We can help you with our expertise and experience of the B2B market. Sectors in which we are active are the agricultural sector, the construction and installation sector, the transport and logistics sector and the industry. Would you like to receive a free measurement of your online activities? We would be happy to make an appointment with you.

Finally

The goal of all our customers is to achieve more turnover via the Internet. We ensure that they succeed in this mission. If you are a B2B company, we would like to provide insight into your online opportunities without obligation. And give you advice on where you stand in relation to your competitors. Click here to request this scan.

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