Despite considerable evidence indicating how important B2B Omnichannel Commerce is for e-commerce, not many companies implement it with zeal befitting its significance.
B2B Omnichannel is no longer a matter of choice for business. Taking inspiration from B2C, B2B customers continue to push businesses for more customer-centric functionalities.
As a retailer, you’re required to make sure you have:
a) Skilled staff to implement strategies related to customers.
Strategies need execution, and execution won’t happen without staff. This Salesforce report reveals that only 48% of B2B sellers meet staff criteria.
b) Access to processes to implement plans and strategies.
A roadmap has to be created to march step-by-step toward the execution of business strategies. Again, Salesforce reports only 41% of the B2B businesses meet the “process” criterion.
c) Technology to execute strategies.
Tools are needed to implement strategies verbatim. Only 40% of businesses, according to Salesforce, have the necessary technology to execute their strategies.
d) Prioritize B2B Omnichannel commerce to change business culture.
An omnichannel approach is necessary to overhaul the entire behavioral dynamics of businesses. Here, Salesforce reports only 40% of companies do prioritize Omnichannel.
B2C vendors pose challenges. The above criterion is met strictly by B2C sellers. However, customers expect B2B businesses to come clear on the above criteria as strictly as a B2C business.
There is an online-offline conundrum. Here’s how omnichannel commerce resolves the issue.
Forrester’s reports show businesses have miserably failed to appreciate omnichannel’s role in materializing self-service digital transformation, or in improving ROI.
However, e-commerce businesses that do implement digital strategies into their buying and selling processes reciprocate the above mistake by not letting offline selling and digital selling merge into a unified selling experience.
As a matter of fact, businesses need to bridge digital selling strategy and in-person selling strategy together.
AI-enabled digital automation brings speed, opens up new markets, and offers insightful data.
In-person selling, on the other hand, cements long term customer relationships, which end up in high-cost buying.
Omnichannel B2B Commerce offers businesses a robust platform to resolve tug of war between online and offline selling, or between digital and in-person selling.
While it automates recurring tasks, promotes self-service transactions, by integrating offline mechanisms with the company’s digital infrastructure, it goes one step ahead by streamlining complex in-person customer engagements as well.
B2B Omnichannel Commerce offers companies integration solutions to overcome challenges.
1) Integrating various sales channels is a challenge for businesses
In today’s technology-driven business world, businesses are challenged to maintain pace with cutting-edge technologies, while at the same time keeping up the tradition as well.
Digital and traditional sales channels are further pushed apart if businesses prioritize one over another. As a result, the gulf between the two widens.
That’s exactly how omnichannel B2B commerce plays its part and narrows the void.
2) Omnichannel is the new habitual reality
Today’s business is driven by e-commerce. Growth and scalability depend on a business’s efficiency in delivering digital eCommerce experience to its customers.
Online selling doesn’t only multiply revenues; companies get an AI-enabled pricing mechanism and personalized product catalog optimization.
In short, a customer’s overall shopping experience is improved significantly by implementing digital tools like omnichannel B2B.
Key omnichannel strategies for B2B businesses
Omnichannel selling is a future of the B2B realm. More and more businesses gravitate towards e-commerce with each passing day.
Undoubtedly, B2B e-commerce is a goldmine of opportunities. What businesses need are tools and strategies to receive the great dividends that e-commerce promises.
1) The whole buyer journey should be your omnichannel strategy
Businesses often narrow down their B2B omnichannel strategies to buying. In a way, they ignore what matters the most. That’s a buyer’s journey, from the first contact to the final checkout.
Buying behavior varies from online customers to offline customers. Those who buy in-person from physical stores search the store’s website for product information and other suggestions.
As a matter of fact, online information influences offline buyers as well. So, for businesses, it’s imperative to mark out the entire buying journey of customers for an insightful omnichannel experience.
2) Bridge online and offline channels to get the most out of omnichannel
The freedom to buy online, as well as offline, is an essential element of today’s consumer culture.
For cross-channel selling capabilities, businesses need data-driven collaboration between traditional, in-house selling and e-commerce selling.
B2B omnichannel commerce enables a unified viewing of customer data, so sales teams on both channels can draw valuable insights from customer data available simultaneously.
Using customer data, businesses can cement stronger and long-lasting relations with customers and offer a personalized experience.
3) Design your omnichannel strategy from customer and seller perspectives
Customers, the sales team, and other professionals will be accessing the same digital systems.
In other words, businesses need to conceptualize an omnichannel implementation strategy keeping in view both assisted-service and self-service approaches.
For a successful implementation of omnichannel approaches, the key is understanding sales requirements and service deliverables from seller-buyer perspectives.
Ecommerce and self-service have completely revolutionized B2B selling. However, it doesn’t imply the role of salespersons is over!
Self-service means empowering customers, making businesses digital-ready, and not displacing salespersons. Insights offered by e-commerce platforms to businesses do empower salespeople.
With omnichannel B2B e-commerce in place, businesses get all the tools necessary for self-service.
According to a study, 68 percent of B2B buyers prefer gathering information online instead of connecting with sales representatives for the same.
Today buyers research products using e-commerce. As more customers turn to e-commerce, the need to offer easy user interface, speed, and self-service to B2B buyers keeps on rising.