An improved customer experience is closely linked with increased revenue as well as other advantages. Yet B2B customer experience still lags behind B2C. Are you looking for ways to improve your B2B customer experience and tap into the many business benefits that come with it? This article will suggest some key pillars of a successful B2B eCommerce customer journey.
Time is customers’ greatest resource. As we become accustomed to getting everything faster — instant responses, real-time updates, same-day and even next-hour delivery etc. — offering a fast and efficient B2B customer journey is what can help companies get ahead.
As expected, speed and efficiency came up as recurring priorities throughout our research into the B2B buying process. In fact, research shows that vendor responsiveness and time-savings in the buying process had a greater influence on customer loyalty than cost reduction.
- Offer 24/7 self-service: Allow your customers to quickly access what they need, when they need it. This means providing an online platform available round the clock.
- Free up your team’s time to focus on quick responses: By offering self-service functionalities to your customers, you will also free up your sales and service teams’ time. Your teams can then focus on responding faster to offline customer questions and inquiries, as well as engaging in meaningful, relationship-building interactions.
- Sync your tech stack: Speed up your entire order-to-cash (O2C) process by connecting all your relevant systems, including your e-commerce platform, ERP, payment and delivery providers, PIM system and more. Ensure your tech stack perfectly synchronizes to deliver a fast and streamlined customer experience, from purchasing and delivery to invoicing and returns.
The second key element of an optimal customer experience, be it B2B or B2C, is ease. B2B customers in particular look for straightforward and accurate shopping experiences. So, make it easy for your customers to complete their tasks. Simplify the customer journey. And remove any friction.
What can you do to simplify the B2B customer experience?
- Optimize the usability of your website and e-store: Help customers easily find what they are looking for by optimizing the design of your web store and reducing the number of steps it takes for buyers to find the information they need and place an order.
- Prevent order errors: Order errors have a significant impact on the profitability, efficiency, productivity and sales of your customers’ organizations. Identify the leading cause(s) of order errors for your customers and your company, and take steps to remove these friction points.
Delivering a great B2B CX also means providing a consistent experience at every touchpoint. That is a strong omnichannel experience. Due to the complexity of the B2B buying process, including the fact that several different buyer personas are involved at each stage of the process, it’s common for multiple channels to be used in a single purchase.
Are your clients getting the same message from your business in your web store, as they are on the phone with your agents or via email? Can they access their full order history, whatever the channel used, by placing a single call or looking only into their web store account?
Customers expect a seamless and consistent B2B experience, even when they switch between channels.
However, you choose to improve your B2B customer experience, make sure the experience you offer your customers is relevant to them. What do they need? What do they expect? How do they want to communicate, shop, and interact with you? How do they want to access information?
You might already be offering what most customers would consider a stellar experience; but if it doesn’t appeal to your customer base, in particular, it won’t help your business. So, get to know what customers in your market, your industry, and your region are looking for now; as well as anticipate their future needs.
To create a more relevant B2B customer experience, try the following:
- Get your customers involved: After all, they are the people you’re trying to please! Ask them what they are looking for directly. Here are some tips on gathering B2B customer feedback to improve your online experience, which you can also apply in part to improve your offline experience.
- Map your B2B customer journey: Get into the shoes of your B2B customers. Create user stories to map their customer journeys by focusing on the who, what and why. This will help guide any customer experience optimizations. See our user stories template and examples for how to create user stories.
Above are some key pillars of a successful B2B eCommerce customer journey that you can consider applying to your business model. If you are a beginner and looking for a tool that involves some of these elements at the same time then check out Grit Global. A Magento b2b website that offers you multiple channels, flexibility in creating customizing catalogs, prices as well as Comprehensive Inventory Management Features. You will not have to worry and do tasks on your own with this genius invention. Let this be a part of your journey ahead.
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