Statista reports that during the peak of the COVID-19 crisis (March-April 2020), there was an unprecedented surge in e-commerce share of retail sales as many countries implemented lockdown measures to restrict online sales. For example, in the United Kingdom – already an established e-commerce market – this percentage reached 31.3 percent before stabilizing over subsequent periods. As of January 31, 2021, three leading countries with higher e-commerce share in total retail were the United Kingdom, the United States, and Canada at 24-17-15 percent, respectively. This blog will discuss the Top 9 B2B Ecommerce Trends to Transform Your Business to the Next Level.
What Is B2B eCommerce?
B2B commerce (business-to-business electronic commerce) is the online sale of goods or services between businesses. B2B commerce differs from B2C commerce, business-to-consumer electronic commerce, where a company sells goods or services directly to a consumer.
9 B2B E-commerce Trends for Business Growth
1. Mobile Optimization Matters A Lot:
As smartphones and tablets increasingly play a vital role in business operations, B2B ecommerce platforms must ensure an enjoyable mobile experience to attract and keep customers.
Hubspot Research shows that mobile commerce will reach $620.97 billion by 2024, accounting for 42.9% of all ecommerce sales made via mobile devices. By optimizing your website for mobile use, you can lower bounce rates and minimize abandoned carts; additionally, catering to consumers on their preferred platforms allows your brand to remain relevant in an ever-evolving industry.
2. Flexible B2B Payment Options:
B2B payments tend to be more complex than B2C ones due to varying pricing and quotes that depend on who the customer is. But with digital transformation rapidly occurring at pace and the pandemic acting as a catalyst for change, there has been a shift towards cloud-based payment systems and automated systems such as Gartner’s report featured on tecstub.com projecting that in 2025, 80% of transactions will occur digitally.
You can use the following digital payment gateways to improve b2b ecommerce growth and start your business well:
- Smart payments
- Flexible payment options support
- Blockchain and cryptocurrency
3. Social Commerce:
According to research by Net Solution, approximately 30% of internet users in the United States make purchases via social media; this number increases significantly for Chinese internet users (50%). Promoting and selling products via social media channels is an incredible opportunity that keeps customers engaged with your brand, and 2023 promises an explosion in this arena; social sales may triple by 2025!
Here is an excellent example from the Forever21 Clothing Brand: they receive the highest number of orders from their Instagram page. Selling Products on Instagram is one of the Trending b2b ecommerce trends for 2023
4. AI Powered Chatbots:
Suppose you are facing some problem with the Checkout process. If you enable AI-powered chatbots, they can provide instant customer support and help with order processing, reducing the need for manual intervention. Customer satisfaction matters a lot in an ecommerce business. If you provide 24/7 customer support to your users, this will help to increase your b2b ecommerce growth.
5. Enabling voice search can lead to more product discovery opportunities:
According to the Google report by Hubspot, 27% of the global online population uses voice search on mobile. Voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant are becoming increasingly popular in B2B ecommerce. B2B buyers can use voice commands to place orders, track shipments, and receive personalized recommendations. Companies need to optimize their ecommerce platforms for voice search to stay ahead of the competition.
6. Sustainability and Ethical Sourcing:
B2B buyers are becoming more conscious of sustainability and ethical sourcing practices. They prefer to work with suppliers who prioritize environmental responsibility and fair labor practices. Companies demonstrating their commitment to sustainability will have a competitive edge in the market.
Like their B2C counterparts, B2B buyers now expect personalized experiences when purchasing products online. They want tailored product recommendations, pricing, and promotions tailored specifically to their needs – businesses that can deliver this level of customization will gain a distinct competitive edge over their rivals.
8. Omnichannel Selling:
Omnichannel sales refer to a seamless, integrated shopping experience across multiple channels. In an Omnichannel B2B ecommerce strategy, the seller focuses on the customer’s purchase experience rather than their unique experiences across channels. It’s vital to distinguish between omnichannel and multichannel – omnichannel implies providing a consistent and linked experience for the customer, whereas multichannel entails selling things across several channels.
9. Subscription-Based Models:
Many B2B companies are moving toward subscription-based business models, in which customers pay an ongoing subscription fee for accessing products or services. This strategy helps to retain long-term customer relationships and is one of the finest B2b ecommerce Trends 2023.
B2B ecommerce is currently experiencing massive transformations driven by technological advances and evolving customer expectations, creating significant changes within B2B ecommerce operations. Businesses must adapt their ecommerce strategies accordingly by adopting key trends such as personalization, mobile commerce, omnichannel selling, subscription-based models, voice commerce, and social selling sustainability as trends that will shape their future development. These ecommerce b2b trends allow businesses to transform operations while providing exceptional customer experiences.