What is a successful B2B webshop?

The advance of the B2B webshop is increasing. We regularly get the question whether there is a big difference between a consumer-oriented webshop and a purely B2B driven webshop. There are all kinds of similarities in building, maintaining and making B2B webshops successful, but there are also differences. In this update, we give a couple of examples and practice cases of how a B2B webshop can be successful. And what you should note, when you start this.   

The difference between a consumer and a professional buyer in a B2B webshop

It’s important to know your ultimate consumer to generate your business. This is the first difference between a B2C and B2B webshop. We already discussed the online behavior of professional buyers in the previous update. Click here for more information about the behavior of a B2B buyer.

The online behavior of your buyer and the reason why a searcher wants to buy something online is an important aspect when building a B2B webshop. It’s important to look at the differences between a consumer and a professional. This has a different approach to the development of your B2B e-commerce process. Manufactures or importers deal with dealers / resellers very often. They therefore sell products via the wholesale trade on a regular basis. In addition, there a more and more wholesales and dealers in the B2B that are also actively engaged in selling via the internet. But the manufactures and importers want more grip on the ultimate consumer. The ultimate consumer, buyer is therefore an important starting point in the development of a B2B webshop.

 The difference between a B2B and B2C customer

The main point where you can distinguish a B2B and B2C customer is the purpose of the purchase. B2B buyers have a different motivation, a different purpose and search for a different product when they search on the internet. B2B buyers are professionals and buy in large amounts very often. Beside that they also frequently return to buy more products. The main differences are listed below.



Makes decisions for the company
Independent buyer
Big orders
Small orders
Customer-oriented prices
Fixed prizes
Buys regularly
Buys less often
Buys because it’s part of the job
Buys for personal reasons
Buys in a specific market
Buys in all markets
Search by product number
Search by product


Dealer module often part of a B2B webshop

Adding a dealer module is an aspect that can sometimes be seen in a successful B2B webshop. This in contrast to a customer-oriented webshop. An example to see how this works in the practice is on the B2B webshop of Dormer Pramet or Tricorp. The buyer gets to know Dormer Pramet or Tricorp via a long tail search and will read the benefits of a specific drill, mill or working clothes that he needs for his work process. He can then request an offer directly via the B2B shop at his own dealer or at a dealer in the neighborhood. Sometimes it is also possible to pay directly, but this is not a primary goal. That brings us to the next big difference the price. A strong example of a B2B shop where the ultimate customer can buy directly without dealers is SlijpExpert.nl. This B2B webshop doesn’t use a dealer module and sells directly to ultimate customers. So, there are many forms of B2B e-commerce.

Different prices per customer

In a B2B environment is price transparency always a problem. With this we mean the prices of the product shown in the B2B shop itself and the price paid by the dealer or end user. Professional end users frequently purchase products for the execution of the work. The rates are often adjusted to the customer’s purchase volume or if it is done via a dealer or whether it is a stockholding or not. The discount structure therefore has many variations. For example, only on product level, a certain product range, a specific customer group or customer.

In setting up and successfully getting a B2B webshop you will therefore have to deal with this. This is a part of what we discussed separately during the online positioning and the determination of the digital growth strategy. We advise to always show prices of products. Whether this is a suggested retail price or a net price. If you don’t show the prices of the products, the probability of not being included in the buyer’s comparison is big and you lose your chance to sell products. We recommend this even with a combination of capital goods and professional consumables. From our data it becomes clear that without a price tag the conversion to application or an order will stay behind. LintzagenService.nl is a good example of this. In this successful B2B webshop we made a combination of band saw machines (= capital goods) and band saws (= consumables) by combining applications and direct sales.

Which software is the best suited for my B2B webshop?

Webshop software is a resource and not a goal. It is necessary to develop and implement the right software to achieve the best results. The business case is leading, not the software. What should you then reckon with? We assume that you are not an expert in programming. But you know what you want to achieve. A very important base is the number of products that you want to offer in your B2B webshop. This determines for a large part which software is sufficient. If you look at the webshops of our customers such as; Mr. Miles, Redbrick, SlijpExpert.nl and Dormer Pramet, you see that these are all B2B shops ranging from 1,000 to 22,000 products and all built in Magento. The B2B lead generation model, webshop Tricorp.com was developed in a .NET (dot.NET) environment. The right choice of the webshop software is an important aspect. For example, with previously mentioned webshops are basic licenses such as a WooCommerce WordPress plugin not an option. These plugins have a max of 250 products, without heavy complexity in terms of grouped products or many filters. The B2B lead generation, websites and webshops such as KarelClean.nl and LintzagenService.nl have less than 250 products and can be a successful B2B webshop with this software. There are furthermore many other software models and licenses that may or may not be suitable. Would you like to know more about examples of webshops? Click here. In this article, we discuss the deployment of P.I.M systems.

Jelba and B2B webshops

What makes us at Jelba so special, is that we operate in the construction, industrial, logistics and agricultural sectors. We have a 100% focus on B2B webshops, websites and online marketing. We also only serve B2B customers. Jelba has a lot of knowledge and expertise by focusing on this. So, we know how we can help you in the B2B.

Are you going to start building a B2B webshop? Contact us without obligation. We can then show you various examples from practice of comparable companies. After all, it is our job and you probably aren’t used to do this. We are happy to help you make the right choices.

Do you have additions or comments? Let us know and send an email to collega@jelba.nl. Thank you in advance.


The goal of all our customers is to realize more sales online. We ensure that they succeed in this mission. If you are a B2B company, then we are happy to provide insight into your online opportunities and give advice on where you stand in comparison to your competition. Click here to request this scan.