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What are your top considerations when you are thinking about upgrading or replacing your ecommerce platform?

Here are five things we recommend you think about before taking your

next steps.

  1. Flexibility

Innovation in Cloud-based B2B ecommerce is outstripping the capabilities of many legacy and on-premises systems. The demand for improved user experiences, support for multi-tier selling, advanced pricing and order workflows are all driving improvements that can be developed and deployed quickly in the Cloud.

The most successful B2B companies are using scalable Cloud-based ecommerce platforms to support their new strategies.

  1. Staying agile

Manufacturers and wholesalers who rely on in-house systems and historically complex business processes are limiting their sales channels and missing the mark on user experiences.

Innovation and improvement is achieved by collecting, testing and analysing data, which is not always easy with older ‘silo’ business systems. Powerful application programming interfaces are making it far faster to develop new ideas and test them in the Cloud.

  1. Going beyond pricing

Price and availability are important for B2B buyers and they are looking for consistency across online and offline channels. However, many ecommerce innovations around pricing are likely to be beyond the scope of older systems.

For example, it is becoming essential for many businesses to tailor pricing, currencies and languages for complex product lines and multiple sites. Performance can be dramatically improved by responding to real-time supply and demand with dynamic price adjustments. Many manufacturers are adding value and gaining a distinctive market position by offering cost, price, quote (CPQ) selling across multiple channels.

  1. Distinctiveness

B2B buyers expect their buying experience to be comparable to shopping on Alibaba or Amazon. However, that doesn’t mean they want to make their business purchases in those marketplaces.

Forward-looking B2B ecommerce companies are doing much more than simply delivering these user experience essentials.  They are using their knowledge and understanding of their sector and customers to create a personalised and tailored service.

They are improving satisfaction and building customer loyalty by using buying histories and customer preferences and by delivering bespoke online specifications and quotations. To do this they need integration with back-office systems.

Supporting this with quality content and technical and customer support helps to make them the supplier of choice.

  1. Cost efficiency

Features such as improved catalogue management, flexible storefronts, partner portals, CPQ and payment gateways are quickly becoming essential. It can be time-consuming and costly to develop these features in older systems.

Where business systems have been developed independently manual processing and human errors can easily affect performance and buyers’ satisfaction.

Modern Cloud-based B2B e-commerce platforms include order management and come with integration for major business systems. They provide a unified view across sales channels and reduce costs at the same time. They can scale to support ‘just in time’ (JIT) availability, automate replacement orders and customise complex workflows.

For expert advice on your next ecommerce steps talk to one of our team today.

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