As the ecommerce industry has flourished in the last decade, even the B2B businesses have realized their potential and have jumped on the ecommerce bandwagon. B2B online store gives a convenient way to buy and shop online. The buying behavior and expectations of B2B customers and buyers are also changing.
Nearly three-fourths of the B2B buyers say that it is more convenient to buy online than from a sales representative, and 93% prefer to complete a purchase online when they have already decided to buy.
As a B2B ecommerce store owner, you are responsible for delivering an online buying experience to meet customer expectations, increase sales, and improve brand loyalty.
To achieve this, you shouldn’t make the most common B2B mistakes that can prevent your business from becoming a successful B2B ecommerce store. This article will go through the top mistakes that B2B businesses commit and avoid these mistakes.
Top 10 Mistakes That B2B Businesses Common & How To Avoid These Mistakes?
1. Assuming That B2B Buyers Don’t Want To Purchase Online
Although some B2B buyers still prefer face-to-face dealing with the sales representatives, most B2B buyers prefer online purchasing. It is valid for all types of B2B buyers but especially for the millennials who know the world through the internet. Since they do all their research online and maybe sell things online, they also want to buy online.
As we mentioned above, nearly three-fourths of the B2B buyers now prefer online purchasing. They want self-service access to accounts and orders, complete control of the buying process, and real-time access to the information.
As more and more B2B buyers have shifted their buying behaviors from traditional purchasing to online purchasing, B2B ecommerce stores have become the need of hours to increase sales, revenue, and customer loyalty. In some cases, the orders are pretty complex and require interaction with the salesperson. But B2B ecommerce stores let the B2B buyers research, purchase, reorder, and browse the products sitting in their offices.
2. Doesn’t Deliver A B2C-Like Purchasing Experience
People have already gone through the popular B2C ecommerce stores such as Amazon, Flipkart, eBay, and others, providing a user-friendly and personalized buying experience. Thus, the customers now expect the same level of expertise from the other stores as well. They want a quick, easy, and convenient purchase from start to finish. When going to the B2B stores, the buyers also want a similar experience from the B2B ecommerce stores. As a B2B store owner, you have to give personalized product recommendations, special offers, an easy ordering process, fast fulfillment, and much more to the B2B buyers.
B2C customers have become used to beautiful ecommerce sites which are easy to navigate. They want high-quality product images, detailed product descriptions, AI-powered search, and other B2C standard features.
3. Ignoring The Importance Of Mobile B2B eCommerce
Mobile ecommerce is limited to B2C ecommerce, but B2B buyers also use their smartphones for business purchases. B2B businesses make a huge mistake when they ignore the potential of mobile for their business. Nearly 60% of B2B buyers make purchases from mobile, and the same number of B2B sellers say that mobile plays a significant role in investments.
The buyers want to research products, request price quotes, and complete purchases from mobile devices. Thus it would help if you created a B2B ecommerce store optimized for mobile devices. Many B2B businesses even developed a dedicated mobile app for a faster and more accessible way to engage customers. Mobile apps will improve the buying experience and involve everyone from customers and channel partners to field sales and internal teams. You can also integrate ERP systems and other features in mobile apps.
4. Neglecting SEO
Many B2B store owners believe that SEO doesn’t increase the B2B business. It would help if you discovered in the non-branded searches for terms that B2B buyers use when they start searching. But you should know that since 89% of B2B customers are using the web for their research, and 73% of traffic to B2B company sites comes from a search engine, neglecting SEO is the biggest mistake you can make.
A proper SEO strategy starts with identifying keywords based on understanding which search terms your buyers may use on Google. After that, you can implement SEO practices to optimize the content of your landing pages (including product pages) and metadata. SEO gives you visibility in organic search, authority, and on-site engagement for attracting and converting more customers.
5. Not Providing Custom Orders
Thinking that you can offer the feature of negotiation through a B2B ecommerce store can be a big mistake. In the B2B businesses, the purchases are made of bulk quantity, and since B2B buyers are buying hundreds or thousands of products, they always tend to negotiate with the B2B sellers. Many B2B ecommerce platforms such as Adobe Commerce allow you to show customers their specific pricing and discounts by segmenting them into groups. After creating customer groups, you can give them personalized purchasing with unique pricing terms.
You can also allow custom orders using quoting tools. Adobe Commerce will enable buyers to request a price quote 24 x 7, which merchants can provide, and the buyers can review.
6. Not Providing EMI Options Multiple Payments
In B2C expect we expect that a wide range of audiences will be accessing our store. Thus, we must provide multiple payments for a convenient payment process. But why do we lack the same feature in our B2B store? In B2B, the buyers may have a different practice of payment can use mobile wallets or paper checks, or NEFT, or IMPS. Don’t commit the mistake of losing a buyer just because you couldn’t accept the payment that the buyer uses.
Do you know that B2B businesses that offer flexible payment options have witnessed an increase in sales by 17% and average orders improve by 21%?
The purchasing from your B2B store should be as smooth as possible by allowing buyers to use corporate accounts, credit, mobile wallets, net 30 terms, checks, and other payment modes they prefer for the B2B purchase. The reordering should also be a one-click process for simplifying recurring payments. Many B2B businesses forget that cost plays a crucial role in ecommerce businesses. A hiccup in this phase can prevent a sale with a customer who can even be a key driver of revenue for your business.
7. Not Providing Comprehensive Product Information
Be it B2B or B2C customers, after seeing the outcome. More than three-fourths of the customers say that a website design is essential, making it easy to find products. They expect high-resolution images and highly detailed product descriptions with exact dimensions, material, warranty, model, stock availability, price, and other details.
In short, you have to showcase your products so that buyers can easily make purchasing decisions. Also, optimize the product descriptions for the search engines and provide personalized product recommendations for cross-selling and upsell opportunities.
8. Believing That Social Proof Is Just Required For B2C eCommerce Stores
In many ways, both the B2B and B2C buyers are almost the same. Even the B2B buyers want to know whether they are getting a value deal on the product at a fair price from a reputed company that has already satiated buyers in the past.
Today’s millennials give particular importance to the advice of their peers on social media, where they interact with them both personally and professionally. Thus, it would be a big mistake not to give social proof to your B2B buyers. Presence on social media platforms improves your relationship with customers and promotes your business as a reputed company.
You can share tips on your social media channels and share a new range of products, reviews, ratings, case studies, and other information.
9. Providing Full Transparency In Pricing
This has been a debatable topic about whether you should be fully transparent in your pricing or not. Many proponents have said that this will increase trust and gives a smooth buying experience. On the other side, opponents mention that the competitors would underbid the price with complete transparency in pricing.
But you can adopt both ways in Adobe Commerce. You can create groups of customers through customer segmentation and display individualized pricing only after they log in to your store. You can also offer discounted pricing with customer groups. It is also possible to showcase the catalog or products to the visitors, but they wouldn’t see the pricing until they register or log in.
10. Not Integrating Your Site With Other Critical Systems
More than half of the B2B executives say that ecommerce platform integration is a top technology need. If you don’t integrate your ecommerce platform with other systems such as ERP, CRM, PIM, etc., it will make your business less efficient. Without incorporating these systems, you have to enter the information manually for inventory, customers, orders, pricing, etc.
It will result in losing more time, money, and resources who have to perform all the tasks manually. The best approach is to choose an ecommerce platform like Adobe Commerce which is ideally suited for B2B business and can easily integrate with your existing systems.
In this article, we have gone through the top 10 mistakes that B2B businesses generally make and how they can avoid them. At Emizentech, the best ecommerce development company, we have expertise in developing B2B stores from scratch. We understand that the UX of B2B should be like B2C, but the functionalities should be focused on bulk selling. Our experienced developers can build your ecommerce store and can implement any number of complex features and functionalities. Let us know your requirements.