Contrary to popular belief that customers and businesses are polar opposites, customers serving as consumers and businesses serving as the supplier, the B2B Business model challenges these preconceptions by introducing us to a concept in which businesses act like customers as well.
B2B business model is a marketing strategy in which two or more companies exchange goods and services. Both companies profit from one another in some way in B2B business models and have equivalent market leverage. A large number of these operations are associated with the exchange of raw materials.
This happens all the time in the technological business, with the Apple iPhone being a prime example. Apple produces iPhones under their own name, but Samsung provides a variety of chipboards. Despite the fact that they are competitors, they have a business-to-business connection that benefits both.
The end product of processing and manufacturing is usually of excellent quality and sells multiple times the initial investment in raw materials.
Read More: 4 E-COMMERCE BUSINESS MARKETING MODELS: HOW TO CHOOSE WHICH ONE WORKS BEST FOR YOUR BUSINESS
First, Let’s dive into the advantages of the B2B business model, and how it actually benefits your business:
Enhanced Supplier and Customer Management
B2B eCommerce allows for better management of both suppliers and customers. When you go digital, you can use business management software. This will provide you with information on how your customers’ shop. You’ll be able to use this data to provide your consumers with more personalized purchasing experiences. Essentially, the idea is a win-win situation for both sides.
Improved Data Analysis
B2B eCommerce is the ideal venue for a company to conduct a thorough analytics campaign. B2Bs may make better business decisions with the help of analytics. This capability is available in any B2B eCommerce platform that offers in-depth sales efficiency analysis. You can generate a variety of reports to better understand how your firm is doing.
Analytics will assist you in determining what is and is not working for your company. You may learn what your customers are looking for on your site and take appropriate steps to increase site engagement. Overall, this feature will be critical to the success of your firm.
Obtaining New Consumers
A B2B eCommerce site with public-facing catalog pages is an effective strategy to reach out to new B2B customers. You can broaden your reach by getting online and employing digital marketing tactics.
Your future customers will not only prefer to shop online but will also require it. B2B buyers have grown so accustomed to making purchases online that they now anticipate it. Buying online is convenient, and it facilitates repeat purchases.
Boosting Your Sales to Your Existing Customers
Ecommerce not only allows you to reach out to new clients, but it also allows you to simply establish an automated cross-sell and up-sell suggestion program. This goes hand in hand with providing customers with a tailored experience. You’ll be able to assist customers in finding the things they’re looking for without them having to ask — just like an in-person sales representative would.
Wondering how to promote to your B2B clients to increase online sales, streamline your business, and focus on what you do best? Here’s what you need to do…
Create Value by Focusing on the Human Part of The Deal
Usability is a critical component in providing value to customers.
This does not always imply building “consumer-like” eCommerce experiences that are heavy on visual and interactive features.
Instead, concentrate on characteristics such as:
- Site performance.
- Robust search, i.e. faceted search.
- An effective purchase funnel.
- Product information in great detail.
- Checkout has been simplified in order to produce a more “business-like” commerce experience.
Usability also entails giving clients the freedom to take control and finish tasks on their own terms. Customers can research, conduct transactions, and maintain their accounts on any device when responsive design is included as part of the eCommerce platform. This cross-device capability can also make field sales representatives significantly more productive and efficient.
Create Value by Focusing on the Business Aspect of the Deal
Customize the eCommerce channel to meet their needs and become an important business partner. Building one-on-one relationships is the first step. Use segmentation to display customer-specific catalogs and pricing, as well as to introduce incentive programs that reward customers for loyalty and volume of business. Then, to remove friction from the process, create workflows that fit the eCommerce ecosystem with the way your consumers do business.
For example, if customers want a multi-step order approval procedure, the underlying eCommerce platform should be designed to accommodate this. You can also use a Quoting tool to accomplish this. The same is true for payments. Ensure that the eCommerce system meets the demands of customers by permitting Purchase Orders, validating credit availability, and enforcing purchase thresholds. Maintain transparency with data and proactively tell consumers about back-ordered items and low inventory counts for products they purchase to minimize any potential impact to their business.
Though only applicable in a subset of B2B use cases, enabling punch-out to allow catalog feeds and ordering straight through the customer’s procurement system can transform the eCommerce channel into a potent instrument for delivering long-term value.
Scalable Business Processes and Teams Must Be Aligned
Organizations frequently find themselves functioning inefficiently as a result of resources being assigned to the wrong roles or process silos that impede momentum. These challenges arise either because the digital channel was built as an ‘add-on’ and was not cohesively structured within the organization, or because organic decisions over time morphed into a structure (i.e. solely Marketing or IT “owning” the eCommerce software) that no longer has an effective foundation for cohesive cross-channel growth.
Here’s how to make sure your teams are on the same page:
- Take a look at your current organizational structure.
- Re-align your resources and roles.
- If necessary, hire from outside the company.
- Once that framework is in place, create a charter that governs financial and management decisions affecting this digital team.
Furthermore, employing technology like BundleB2B can help your sales force better mobilize to access buyer shopping lists, add products to cart, and finish order placement.
Plan and Prepare That Encourage Customer Loyalty, Larger Order Values, and Increasing Purchasing Frequency
After the platform is in place, look to further initiatives to keep the needle moving. If you are a B2B company, you most likely provide consumable products that must be maintained and updated on a regular basis. Allowing for both subscription-based and traditional one-time purchases can help to retain customers, increase customer lifetime value, and simplify corporate operations.
Furthermore, the data can help your sales team show and offer complimentary items, as well as predict when a consumer is ready to buy. Amazon, the industry juggernaut, has already begun to implement similar schemes.
Utilize Technology to Address Ongoing Consumer Issues
Because of the nature of the type and quantity of product requested, B2B fulfillment errors are often exponentially bigger than those associated with B2C or direct-to-consumer buying. Mistakes can cause truckloads or trainloads of products to be impacted.
Your B2B brand must be able to deliver the right items on time while fulfilling expectations on a continuous basis. Rather than dealing with customer service issues, refunds, and apologies, your team must be able to build new relationships and introduce auxiliary services. Most B2B companies employ an ERP or OMS as a single source of truth, with robust APIs connecting those systems to an eCommerce platform.
Move Your Customers From Offline to Online Channels
As Millennial buyers gain more decision-making and purchasing authority within their businesses, the number of B2B clients who prefer to speak with a sales agent in person or over the phone, fax, or even email will continue to decline at a rapid pace.
If your company is launching a new eCommerce channel, make sure to interact with your customers early and regularly. Simple web forms allow users to contact sales and support while also seeking samples and catalogs online. The chat box is also available throughout the site as another way for customers to get help.
Regardless of how you introduce the digital channel, anticipate questions and concerns and emphasize the advantages of shifting to the new platform.