Five B2B Ecommerce trends to watch

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It’s amazing to think that just a decade ago it wasn’t the norm to order food shopping, a take away or to book a taxi on our smartphones and it’s even crazier to imagine that a decade before that, hardly anyone owned a computer or a laptop. Technology changes so quickly – it wasn’t that long ago that people made B2B purchases was over the phone, by noting down the product codes out of a printed catalogue. Yet now if you’re a B2B company and you have a website but you’re not offering your customers the opportunity to purchase online, then you are unfortunately falling behind. B2B ecommerce was starting to build momentum a few years ago, but the pandemic really accelerated its growth, as many offline businesses shifted to selling online to cope with the big change. In this blog we are going to be giving you 5 trends that you should watch closely. The important thing about the ‘trends’ below is that they are actually here to stay, so we hope you find some inspiration here to be able to implement them into your own business so that you continue to succeed.

  1. B2B selling through online marketplaces continues to grow. In fact they are the fastest growing sales channel in B2B ecommerce. We have mentioned this before in previous blogs, that online marketplaces offer a unique opportunity to reach people actively searching for products and who are ready to buy. This is a great option for those companies just starting to move online, as it’s much easier to be found when you are selling your products through an established online marketplace. B2B buyers expect the buying process to be the same as what they experience in their personal lives, meaning they want choices, they want to be able to easily compare products and prices and they want the whole process to be quick and efficient. Online marketplaces are the perfect platform to fulfil those needs. At the very least buyers use marketplaces such as Amazon, Etsy and eBay to find inspiration, so it’s a great way for your business to gain exposure if you don’t already have an established online customer base.
  2. Giving customers a visual ecommerce experience. When you sell online you inevitably take away the ability for customers to see, feel and experience your products in person, but there is a way to give them a great experience online, so they know exactly what they are buying. 3D product configurators and augmented reality (AR), where customers can view a real world environment with computer generated objects can deliver an engaging customer experience. With AR the viewer can interact with the computer generated object (your product) on their smart phone. They can view it from different angles and much more, giving your customers the confidence to buy from you, while knowing exactly what to expect in person when it arrives.
  3. Offering a hyper-personalised customer experience. We have mentioned this many times before in our blogs and that’s because this is a ‘trend’ that’s here to stay. People expect a high level of personalisation from brands in their personal lives and they certainly expect it in their business lives too. Those businesses that are taking advantage of this trend are investing in sophisticated marketing techniques, focusing heavily on hyper-personalisation. They are providing individual decision makers with tailored messages based on their needs, purchases, behaviours, and interactions. A great way to do this is through marketing push notifications on your own mobile App, where you can send tailored offers, discounts and important messages straight to the people that have taken the time to download your App and are therefore extremely likely to buy from you. If you already have a GOb2b website or are thinking of getting one, then you can find out more about our Customer Mobile App here, it’s an effortless way to encourage repeat spending and customer loyalty.
  4. Investing in self-service tools. Providing your customerswith a chat bot that can answer their questions quickly on your website is just one of the ways you can invest in self-service tools that can increase customer retention and shorten sales cycles. It’s very important when offering self-service tools that any customer preferences that come up for example when they are interacting with the chat bot are entered into your CRM system so that the whole B2B buying process continues to be seamless and enjoyable for customers at each touchpoint.     
  5. Seamless systems integrations. B2B customers expect seamless, easy and quick online transactions, and to offer those experiences to your customers, each third party application you use needs to work perfectly together. This is why if you choose a GOb2b ecommerce website, it will integrate seamlessly with your accounting system including Sage, Pegasus and OGL Profit 4 and we also offer the same with our GOb2b Customer App. Many B2B companies will continue to invest in ecommerce system integrations, so that their customers continue to benefit from a smooth buying experience from start to finish.

We hope you found these trends helpful to learn about and that you can start to think about ways to use them to improve your business. If you are looking for a B2B ecommerce website and App that integrates perfectly with your accounting system and that will help to increase your revenue by allowing your customers to order from you 24/7 then please get in touch with us at GOb2b.