eCommerce has seen an exponential rise in popularity over recent years as the number of people who prefer to shop online increases rapidly. While, in the past, eCommerce was mainly B2C, we are now seeing B2B eCommerce platforms becoming a very popular trend. Many businesses are now considering using B2B eCommerce platforms to sell their products or services instead of a traditional face-to-face approach.
Initially, B2B eCommerce started as websites where buyers could buy goods in bulk without the need for a middleman. As time went on, many realized that these platforms presented massive opportunities in reaching out to new customers and cutting costs. B2B eCommerce is now a highly popular trend and by next year it is expected to account for over 20% of B2B transactions.
If you are running your business using the old-fashioned methods of setting up physical stores, perhaps it’s time for you to check out how convenient a B2B platform can be. You will be able to grow your business quickly, but first you need to select the right B2B eCommerce platform. Here are the top considerations when choosing one.
Ease of use
B2B eCommerce platforms are different from B2C platforms as they come with extra, more advanced features. These features are crucial when it comes to processing large and recurring orders, dealing with the B2B long buying cycles processing payments, and updating product catalog and information.
Although these features are all aimed at enhancing the functionality of the B2B eCommerce platform, customers will quickly walk away if their shopping experience is not made as seamless as possible. Instead, they might consider other platforms that are easy to use or continue using the methods they have been using before. Virto Commerce is an example of an easy-to-use B2B eCommerce platform you should consider for your business.
Ease of access
Just like in the case of B2C eCommerce, B2B buyers also use different devices with different operating systems to access a B2B eCommerce platform. A good B2B eCommerce platform should be easily accessible and not be restricted to particular operating systems. Whether a buyer is using Android, Windows, Linux, or macOS, they should be able to access the platform with no trouble at all.
Most people use their smartphones for a lot of things, including shopping, and a good B2B platform should be easy to access for smartphone users. On top of that, your site should display correctly on every device so that buyers can easily get information on products and compare prices.
B2B eCommerce is much different from B2C eCommerce because buyers usually buy products in bulk and on a continuous or recurring basis. This means that the manner in which B2B buyers make their payments is also different from the payments made by B2C buyers. It is crucial that you check the payment options available and whether there are flexible payment options available—such as making partial payments.
This is an essential feature for any B2B eCommerce platform as it determines how easily you can manage your product information. It will sometimes be a difficult task to manage product information because various suppliers will use different inventory formats.
Make sure you check out how some of the top B2B eCommerce platforms provide solutions for product catalog management. The platform should also provide detailed inventory data which can be accessed by customers as it is key in preventing incidents such as backorders.