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Does my business need a B2B platform?

by Daniel Guntin, March 27, 2020
A term that is increasingly heard in the world of digital business is the B2B ecommerce model
/The B2B ecommerce concept is basically a digital commerce model optimized for manufacturers and distributors to sell to intermediaries through a web site.

This model significantly increases efficiency in the management of supplies to both suppliers and customers.  
This industry now duplicates the online sales model we are used to, where companies sell to end users.
The B2B ecommerce model is around 1.2 trillion dollars and is growing at a rate of 7.4% each year according to the Forrester portal. 
The pioneering companies in online retailing have discovered the great advantages of being able to sell to anyone anywhere in the world.

 

Can manufacturers and large retailers also benefit from selling to their dealers using the online channel?

     In the business world, purchases are made in a slightly more complex way. You have to deal with issues such as price variation depending on a lot of variables, type of customer, specific contract, freight, rappels, purchase volume to name just a few of them. 
 

In certain more traditional sectors, the customer often prefers to place his "supply order" by telephone, fax or email.

This means large management costs for the supplier companies, as they have to enter all this information manually into their systems (with the consequent risk of mistakes due to loss of information and time constraints). 

They can also choose to offer their clients access to their management platforms such as SAP or SAGE with the inconvenience of havin to pay for more user licenses.
This often involves installing and maintaining the desktop application on customers' computers and covering training for customers, which is usually not cheap. 
     The digital transformation does not mean suddenly abandoning the traditional model and forcing our customers to use media they are not comfortable with.  Rather than that, it's about providing a more "technological" way of shopping, for those customers who want to do so.

The 10 main advantages of a B2B commerce model

Integration with your ERP (Order Management System).

As the customer is the one who places her own order into the B2B ecommerce system, efficiency and costs are significantly increased.
  • Mistakes are lowered.
  • There is no need to pay for extra licenses per user.
  • No training is required to use the platform.
  • The customer can placer her order anywhere at any time withoutin depending on schedules or bank holidays.

Reduction of delivery times.

The order can be passed directly to the warehouse and the carrier for collection and delivery.
In addition, the customer can know at any time the status of his order and trace it.

Reduction of sales costs.

Part of the costs of receiving and managing the order disappear because the system becomes self-managed by the customer (who searches and orders on his own).
This also allows your customer service team to focus on supporting rather than collecting orders.

Customization of Promotions and Prices.

You can take advantage of the potential of the ecommerce platform to personalize the content or products that will be visible to each of your customers.
You can choose who sees what product or what offer or what price based on the criteria that your sales team establishes beforehand.
You can also manage prices differently for the same customer depending on a previous contract relating to a work or a department within the same company.
You can automate the calculation of prices including freight, rebates or other variables.

Access to new customers and markets.

Any occasional visitor looking for information on the Internet about solutions, products or prices can become your customer or your referral.

Unique B2C2B platform.

Without much extra effort, you can also sell to end users with specific conditions. After all, a shop is a shop.

Visibilidad de catálogo.

Are you sure that your customers know your entire catalogue?
Most likely not.
You can automatically make recommendations about products that the customer does not know about or products with better features.
In addition, thanks to powerful search engines your customer will find better what they need with the consequent increase in sales.

Loyalty of young managers.

Millennials are starting to occupy purchasing management positions in sectors with traditional relationship models.
They won't want to send a fax when they need supplies.
A B2B ecommerce platform will allow you to start defining today the way your customers will buy from you tomorrow.

Omnicanality.

Using a single platform, you can create different portals for each of your brands, countries or segments.
This allows you to manage with a single business team the multiple sales channels of your company.
Take advantage of the potential to manage your ecommerce in a personalized way for each country or language, taking advantage of the differences in cultures to highlight different products.

Corporate presence.

By having your entire catalog on the Internet, your corporate presence and your brand will be significantly increased.
Each of the products in your catalogue generates a page that is indexed in search engines.
Each of these pages is a gateway to your business.
You will also benefit from integration with social networks, opinion platforms and online trust.

Data analysis.

You can integrate the full potential of platforms like Google Analitycs with your ERP, allowing you to accurately measure your marketing campaigns and sales strategies and inventory turnover.
You can also analyze the purchasing habits of each customer and use that knowledge to design more efficient campaigns.
 
At Orienteed we are specialists in developing this type of business using the most reliable plataform on the market, HCL Commerce.

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