Here is the hard truth for those of you who work with B2B e-commerce. Just about no one visits your online store because they want to.
They visit it because of their work.
This is an important fact, because it helps to define what kind of customer experience your customers expect, and because it places demands on what you must be able to deliver with regard to for example, product information.
When we are at work, we focus on two things. Finishing the task we are doing as quickly as possible, and getting recognition for the work we have carried out.
Make the customer’s work easy
In other words, your B2B e-commerce platform must above all, focus on making your customer’s work as easy as possible. Naturally, it is about providing a smooth path to a purchase, which all B2C online shopping sites also focus on, but which have a different character compared to the B2B context. Making a B2B purchase is often more complicated than placing a pair of running shoes in a virtual shopping cart. The products are more complex, as are the purchasing processes, because among other things, there are often several people involved in the decision.
In other words, it is not just about simplifying, but about focusing on precisely what your customers need, to be able to make a decision.
Need for better product information
One of the things that customers need is better product information. According to this survey by the Acquity Group (https://www.accenture.com/us-en/insight-state-b2b-procurement-study-uncovering-shifting-landscape), B2B consumers’ online researching of products is increasing rapidly, and the supplier’s website is the most used channel with regard to such researching. 83 % of the purchasers in the survey consider the supplier’s website as the most important channel for information, but only 37 % of them feel that it is the most helpful source of information.
In other words, there is a need to focus on providing visitors to the online store with better product information, so that in the simplest way, they can collect the data they need to be able to make their purchasing decisions.
Efficient product searches are crucial
A good search function is therefore very important. If the search function is to operate optimally, firstly it is crucial that you have the necessary data. Secondly, the data must be uniform, so that it is possible to carry out refined searches, for example, apply filters based on properties based on size or on a technical specification, with the relevant products subsequently shown. If products are specified incorrectly or not described in a uniform way, there is the risk that they will not show up during a search.
This means that there is often a need to work on tidying up the product data or perhaps even making an effort to acquire the necessary information, before you begin with B2B e-commerce. However, the effort is worthwhile, because making the best product information available to the visitor who is searching for information can make all the difference when the purchasing decision shall be made.
Therefore, focus on helping to make the customer’s task quick and efficient. In doing so, you will increase the likelihood of them returning to your online store next time.
Help your customer - Download our white paper
Our white paper “Ready for B2B e-commerce?” teaches you to collect and structure the necessary product information in order to make your webshop as user friendly as possible.