Something most people do not know is that B2B eCommerce is much larger than B2C eCommerce. And this is nearly double the market size of B2C. Since more and more companies are adopting digital transformation, around 80% of B2B sales are expected to take place via digital channels. However, there are many more misunderstandings regarding B2B eCommerce. This article will outline 6 common B2B online sales myths.
B2B Customers Don’t Want to Buy Online
This is one of the most common myths regarding B2B customers. However, the fact is that Millenials, the generation that encounters technology from a young age, are using digital channels more to finish their shopping. In detail, 73% of millennials are involved in the B2B buying process today. Newer generation buyers tend to do online research and prefer self-service; many prefer not to interact with sales reps. Instead, they’ll seek online reviews, recommendations, and third-party expertise for product research.
In addition, research from Statistica showed that 89% of B2B buyers use the internet during the research process in their buying journey. Furthermore, 75% of B2B product purchases are already made online and concludes that B2B buyers want to make even more purchases online.
B2B Pricing Is Too Complex for eCommerce
B2B pricing is more complicated than to B2C, this might be true. However, it is the opposite in the context of eCommerce. Even though companies have to set pricing structures and offer an effective quoting system for specific sets of buyers, eCommerce and automation can handle them all. The flexibility of pricing will just depend on the eCommerce platform you choose; many B2B eCommerce platforms can deal with complex account-based pricing and personalization. This allows companies to have multiple price lists and choose specific, correct pricing information, based on the account status.
If customers need a custom quote, sales reps can use a quoting system in place that allows customers to request a quote for them to send at any time. Even for custom products, product configurators and forms allow B2B sellers to assign prices for each configuration. In that way they can automate final price or quote for the customer.
With the flexibility to customize pricing, it ensures that you can satisfy any distributor’s requirement.
Customer Service Doesn’t Translate Online
Direct meetings, phone calls are basic components of effective customer service. But with the help of digital platforms, buyers today can approach their customers and serve them 24/7 via various channels like live chat, chatbots, email, SMS, social media, and self-service help desks. Response time is one of the most important factors in customer service; research by Mckinsey has found that a slow response time is a B2B buyer’s biggest complaint. With an integrated eCommerce solution, your customers can access resources, ask questions, and make purchases during non-business hours.
Despite having a rich set of channels, the interesting thing is that they are centralized in one database together. So, a B2B business can provide a streamlined and convenient customer service experience for the buyer. So you can not only serve your customer well but also be able to attract data consistently and easily.
B2B Products Aren’t Suitable For Online Sales
Unlike B2C, B2B products are more complicated as they perceive different attributes, configurations, and customizations, sometimes depending much on each segment of customers. B2B buyers need solutions that are custom fit for their needs and many B2B businesses incorrectly assume it can’t be done online. However, via eCommerce, companies not only cannot but even upgrade personalization to a higher level than when done traditionally.
Online product configurators allow buyers to customize products and visualize them dynamically. The amount of complex customization options is only limited to what the seller is capable of offering. B2B companies don’t even need a product configurator to handle complex orders online. There are forms you can implement to allow unique configuration options for buyers to fill out, making the process more streamlined than having to consult with a sales rep.
eCommerce Only Supports Simple Payment Processes
Common merchants might assume that B2B eCommerce accepts only credit cards or other simple payment gateways like PayPal. But the fact is that there are a lot of payment methods allowed in eCommerce. These options include credit cards, bank transfers, purchase orders, checks/money orders, mobile wallets, and credit lines.
Not only can they set a variety of B2B payment options, but they can also even adjust them so that each account and role level can be approached with different kinds of payment methods. Some platforms, like Magento, already have this as a default option, whereas others would require a third-party integration.
B2B Websites Don’t Need Fancy Design
This is another common myth, however, since the competition on eCommerce is getting more and more intensive, having a site with enough information is not enough. The look, feel, and user experience on the website have a profound impact on customers. Buyers tend to make judgments based on first impressions. B2B sellers must provide buyers with a great online buying experience through user experience and design. With the right design and development, B2B companies can offer a highly personalized customer experience with structures in place that guide and help users through every part of their online buying journey.
Above are the 6 common B2B online sales myths that have been floating around on the internet. However, it is undeniable that it can leverage your company and enhance sales, customer service. It is essential to figure out this before starting a store online.
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