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B2B eCommerce Trends That Will Transform Your Business in 2022

Source: Virtina

Evolution in technology and the nature of buyers have created several changes in the marketing industry. Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic is also greatly responsible for the changes as it severely impacted the lifestyle of the individuals. B2B audience previously composed chiefly of baby boomers and Generation X.

Now technology literate and intelligent millennials also find themselves among the crowd. In a nutshell, the B2B audience is much more aware, thoughtful, and equipped to navigate the challenges of B2B eCommerce.It means they have different expectations as consumers, thus altering their buying patterns.

As a B2B eCommerce business owner, you should always be on top of these changes to ensure your firm can optimally serve the consumers. With the boom in B2B eCommerce in the upcoming years, more platforms, tools, and extensions will help firm owners manage their business more smoothly. A recent report has to consider the alterations made in the past year and has predicted the upcoming trends in B2B eCommerce that will completely transform your business.

Invest in eCommerce Technology 

The first step towards digital transformation is choosing or upgrading your current eCommerce platform. They are the base of your business operations as they establish your existence over the internet. Although many platforms provide the service, not all of them give you the expected level of performance. You need to find an eCommerce platform that best suits personal and business requirements.

It should also be compatible with external extensions, plugins, or other third-party systems you wish to integrate with the platform. Usually, a SaaS-based eCommerce platform is recommended as they are equipped with modern technology. All of the reasons stated above explain how crucial it is to invest in eCommerce platform technology. This wise investment will be 100% fruitful in the long run. 

Give Importance to Product Discovery and Information 

One of the significant issues of B2B customers is that they are unable to find products online. They have to deep search the web to find the products they desire. Even after so many efforts, if they manage to locate the product, they cannot find updated information. It leads to dissatisfaction on the consumer’s end and loss on the business owner’s end.

To prevent this, merchants have to take the special responsibility of upgrading their PIM or Product Information Management software. There are other methods to improve product discovery. Still, PIM software is the best method as it swiftly and efficiently collects, manages, and evenly distributes the product information across all channels.

Create a Loyal Consumer Base 

Most organizations focus on attracting new consumers so much that they forget to give equal importance to the existing consumers. Business owners should ensure that they provide equal or more importance to the current customers and adequately meet their expectations. Delivering a holistic and satisfying shopping experience will ensure that they are hooked on your brand and will repeat their purchases.

In the long run, such loyal consumers bring in significant revenue through their repeated purchases and by attracting new consumers via word-of-mouth marketing. One way to ensure you retain customers is to offer them incentives for their repeated purchases. Marketers popularly use the incremental approach to loyal target customers. Creating a loyal consumer base is one trend that most B2B eCommerce businesses will follow to increase profits. 

Self-service is the New Buying Method

Self-Service became considerably prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic to reduce the amount of human interaction required during the buying process. What started as a necessity is slowly becoming a part of the permanent trend. Many organizations are still recovering from the repercussions of the pandemic and are in the midst of significant internal changes. It is the perfect time to introduce a self-service digital channel in your company.

B2B buyers are demanding to have the ability to purchase a product without interacting with sales representatives. It makes their buying process much faster, but it also gives them the freedom to contemplate and decide without any pressure. According to statistics, about 98% of B2B consumers are looking for the same experience. It’s time your firm delivers that. 

Emphasis on Social Commerce

Social Commerce is a widely accepted trend in various business types. Be it B2C or B2B, social commerce will dominate sales in the upcoming years. According to the latest prediction, social commerce sales will reach approximately 2.9 trillion dollars by 2026. Businesses should expand into this channel and take advantage of the increasing statistics to rapidly grow their company.

Different social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, etc. They inbuilt social media selling features that engage the audience and entice them to buy from your store. Most people are on social media, so it makes sense to have social commerce an integral part of your strategy to reach out to your target audience. 

Introducing Customer Data Platform 

They are also known as CDPs and are vitally important in collecting and organizing customer data. One of the few significant complications the B2B eCommerce owners faced was that they could not categorize and combine the customer data. It led to the loss of valuable information and impacted its sales. Marketing managers need sufficient customer data to plan their campaigns and execute them successfully.

A Customer Data Platform will collect information and help you build an accurate consumer profile, which contains all necessary information you will need to interact with or sell your product to them. It drastically improves the accuracy and efficiency of your marketing efforts. The customer service team can also utilize CDP to manage interactions with the consumer. 

Faster Order Fulfillment

COVID-19 has accelerated the rate of digital transformation. In just three months, the eCommerce industry has experienced a decade worth of development and growth. It means all aspects related to eCommerce have also been involuntarily involved. Thus leading to an acceleration in demand, distribution, consumer behavior, and much more. The click-to-customer cycle refers to when the customer clicks the order now button, and the customer receives the placed order.

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Reducing this time limit has been among the top 3 goals of numerous eCommerce businesses because it significantly influences the company’s future sales. Customers these days are demanding faster fulfillment of the placed order. B2B eCommerce businesses have to adapt to this requirement by changing their distribution channels to keep their customers happy. 

Domestic Production

Offshoring refers to manufacturing goods outside the country because of the cheaper cost of labor, raw materials, etc. The inexpensive cost of manufacturing means you can lower the price of the final product. Many eCommerce manufacturing and B2B companies use this technique to offer affordable products to their clientele. In the past few years, factors such as inflation, pandemic, and fluctuations in the marketplace have led to the emergence of reshoring.

It is the opposite of offshoring, i.e., it refers to the process where the company returns to the domestic production of goods. Deep analysis has proven that in some countries, reshoring is cheaper. Other benefits include merchants having more control over the manufacturing process, protection from external factors like the global collapse of the supply chain, etc.

Customer Personalization

Customer personalization has been a recurring trend for the past few years. It continues to be a growing trend in the present and upcoming years. Personalization gives an impression that huge B2B companies individually care about the needs of their customers. It makes them feel valued and appreciated.

Another reason why personalized shopping is becoming the crowd’s favorite is that it is efficient and convenient. Some examples of excellent customer personalization include sending follow-up emails after purchase to gain consumer feedback, providing location-based services, recommending products based on previous orders, etc. Customized content will ensure that only relevant content is visible to your audience.

Expanding Payment Options 

The growth of online marketplaces and increase in customer personalization has facilitated increasing the number of payment options offered to the audience. There are many payment gateway extensions or plugins available for your B2B eCommerce. Merchants should ensure that their stores must be compatible with all of them. 

More payment options gives increased flexibility to the target audience to buy from your eCommerce business. Streamlining consumer payments is a quick way to enhance the user experience and attract more customers to your store. Most B2B companies have already hopped on to this trend, and it’s time you do the same. 

Bottom Line 

B2B eCommerce has undergone a myriad of changes in the past few years, leaving marketers and business owners no choice but to adapt accordingly. In 2022, we see that some trends from last year or the year before have reappeared while some are fresh out of the box.

Each of the trends mentioned in the blog holds importance in terms of statistical data, SEO services and consumer buying patterns analyzed by marketing experts worldwide. These trends should guide you to enhance your B2B business on all levels and aspects so that you can build a bright and prosperous future for your company.

About the author

Jennifer Simon is working as a WooCommerce expert developer at Virtina. She has 10+ years of experience working with leading companies from all industry verticals including B2B and B2C clientele. Furthermore, she is a passionate blogger and has tried to bring the latest news on eCommerce to the general public in a manner that they best understand.