B2B ecommerce is redefining the rules of online business. Taking a cue from the success of B2C model, businesses worldwide are keen to explore the online route. With some interesting trends shaping the B2B sphere, an early start with the right functionalities in place can give your business a global recognition.
This model promotes rapid growth, exposes your business to new customer segments and offers huge savings in operating costs. Some of the obvious advantages of this model are;
Why you need a B2B Ecommerce platform?
- Better Opportunities: Potential customers and sellers can find you through online searches thus improving your business opportunities.
- Better sales: With your own website and engaging listing and display of products and services you can improve your sales significantly.
- Shorter Selling Cycle: As your store is accessible to anyone from anywhere, you can experience shorter selling cycle and faster finalization of deals.
- Lower Costs: B2B online setup significantly lowers cost of operations and selling by offering a host of automated features.
- New Markets: You can explore global markets and operate on a much larger scale without the limits of geographical boundaries.
- Better Brand Visibility: By having multi-store websites and individual product/ service pages you can create better brand visibility and awareness about your business in the market.
- Improved Customer Satisfaction: By offering improved UI/UX you can get improved customer satisfaction which eventually translates into better business.
What are the real-life scenarios/ Use Cases where B2B Ecommerce website can be used?
- Alibaba, AliExpress like marketplace for sourcing and shopping
- Practo like healthcare services portal listing doctors as well as various other service providers.
- Industrial goods and parts suppliers.
- Office product supplies
- Beauty and wellness products suppliers
- Suppliers of various products and services on a common platform like Indiamart
What you should look out for in a B2B ecommerce platform
Finding a comprehensive ecommerce platform to launch your B2B business involves a lot of research and assessment. However, the lack of choices makes it even more difficult when you are new to the ecommerce arena.
A B2B ecommerce setup needs a host of functionalities to offer complete benefits to the business.
Evaluate the platform you are considering on the following functionalities before you go for it;
Multi-seller -A multi-seller marketplace allows to onboard multiple sellers/vendors and start a business which attracts more customers and more profit at minimum investment. Multi-seller functionality is a must-have feature for a B2B eCommerce Platform.
Multi-store - Multi store setup allows to have many storefronts dealing with diverse products, deals etc for a different set of customer groups. This kind of stores can also have different URLs or different payment and shipping set up to cater to certain geographical locations. A B2B platform should provide this feature for easy business expansion.
Minimum Order Quantity - B2B business usually operates on the principle of selling in bulk. The profits are calculated based on a certain minimum threshold of product quantity. Feature for setting MOQ per product is a must-have for this business model.
Price-overrides - Having different pricing based on customer login helps in offering individual pricing to different user groups and customer segments. Pricing override helps in attracting global customers who can pay in their own currency.
Wholesale and Retail Prices - B2B business should have the capability to offer wholesale as well as retail pricing for different user groups. Opt for the Ecommerce platforms in India that have this feature as an inbuilt functionality.
Inquiry Generation - There should be a facility to generate product and quantity related enquiries right on the product page. This helps in attracting more sales for B2B setup by offering special pricing for a given enquiry.
Compulsory Log-in - Making login compulsory for pages helps in gathering additional information about the business. Having this feature can help with your marketing by building a strong database.
Compare Products Feature - Comparing products on the basis of different sellers, prices and other parameters help greatly in making the final purchase decision. This is also an important feature that your platform provider should be having.
Bulk-order processing - Processing bulk orders on a B2B ecommerce website should not be a time taking or resource intensive task requiring multiple iterations. Look for a platform that gives you the ease to process hundreds of orders in one go.
Form Builder - Having the facility to create dynamic forms as and when needed helps in capturing relevant data. A form builder functionality helps in create and customising existing forms like seller registration etc.
User Roles - Assigning granular roles to users makes a system more robust and secure. Also, it gives freedom to various users to use the backend according to their roles. With the feature of user roles, a B2B website can give more flexibility to various user groups.
Audit Logs - Audit logs not only help to track the activities in a complex B2B environment but also help in limiting and controlling any damage to the point of the breach itself. B2B eCommerce solutions should have audit log as an essential feature.
Custom invoice templates - The ecommerce solution that you are planning to choose for your B2B business should have custom invoice templates so that you can create different invoices, taxes etc based on the type of products services or the rule of the land where the business operations are being carried out.
White-labelling -Another important feature for B2B is white labeling. This helps in creating your own brand presence despite using an ecommerce platform. The platform should be flexible to offer you integration with various Email and SMS gateway etc and show these as coming from your brand instead of third-party providers. You can also add your own branding and logo on the front end as well as the backend.
The B2B Commerce Platform should offer a comprehensive tax engine that gives that includes functionality and support for calculating various taxes like GST in India and other hierarchical taxes.
B2B businesses can have their unique requirements which need custom adjustments on the platform. The platform you choose should be able to offer custom entities to accommodate the unique requirements of the business.
SOS ( Single Sign-On) goes a long way in improving customer experience and offering additional information about users to the B2B business owner. This is one of the good to have features that you should look forward to in the platform of your choice.
Shipping is the pain point for businesses of all sizes. If you get integrated shipping with wide delivery coverage and automated shipping it can take away a major headache.
B2B ecommerce is going to witness a remarkable growth in the years to come. Therefore, it becomes important that you choose one of the top Ecommerce platforms in India that offers you a gamut of rich tools, functionalities and features to ensure your growth. StoreHippo platform offers all the above features and many other advantages that can give your B2B business an edge over competitors.
Keep watching this space for more inputs on platforms that offer a comprehensive set of the above-listed features.