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Understanding B2B e-Commerce Solution choices for your Business

Gaurav Singh Rana
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Understanding B2B e-Commerce Solution choices for your Business

B2B e-Commerce solutions come in variety to help you choose as per your requirements. There are many B2B e-Commerce consulting companies in the market, and all of them try to cater to certain B2B requirements. Most of the B2B e-Commerce solution providers are inspired by B2C platforms. Hence, they lack most of the major features that make e-Commerce really important for a wholesale business. Want to know why? Find out here: Why B2C e-Commerce platform won't work for B2B

Businesses, like you, now know that B2B e-Commerce is a must have, but what type of platform is best? There are several technology options out there—including custom-built, ERP add-ons, and cloud-based software solution—and features vary widely between them.

E-Commerce started with B2C marketplaces, such as Amazon, Flipkart etc. People liked the idea of buying from their comfort zone, this pushed e-Commerce towards the B2B industry as well. Now, businesses and retailers also want to buy online, because they are selling online. But, as we know that B2B e-Commerce functions absolutely in a different way than the B2C e-Commerce. Let’s understand the B2B e-Commerce options available in the industry.

Custom-Built B2B e-Commerce Solution

A custom-built B2B commerce solution is made exclusively for you as per your requirements. This option is being used mostly by large enterprises with ample resources and in-house IT teams.

Pros

  • Perfectly made for you and your exact needs.
  • Customisable with your unique business rules and processes.

Cons

  • Expensive, as it is built from the scratch exclusively for you so ability to grow with your business is limited and costly.
  • High maintenance cost, as all the upgradation and maintenance is for your purpose, so you will be responsible for bearing the cost.
  • You will have to keep a track of industry trends yourself to ensure that your platform is updated and stay relevant with changing times.

ERP Add-on B2B e-Commerce Platform

This is an add-on to your existing ERP system like SAP, Oracle to process the orders and other related tasks. It sounds really nice to consolidate your existing systems with the new one. But, this option comes with its own set of consequences. Your customers does not get much from this option. However, it eases the work of your back office team.

Pros

  • Good option for the business that requires tight ERP integration to resolve the problem of entering the order data manually.
  • Better representation of finance and inventory data.
  • Faster order processing and shipping.

Cons

  • Low-quality customer-experience. B2B buyers require the ability to browse and select the items they need from your digital catalog fast, through an easy-to-use interface that makes sense to them.
  • Mobile-friendly option does not exist. ERP vendors often fall short when attempting to make B2B e-Commerce platforms that are modern, easy-to-use, and mobile-friendly.
  • Lack of sales force automation.

Cloud-based SAAS B2B e-Commerce Solution

A cloud-based SaaS (Software as a Service) B2B e-Commerce solution is the best and most flexible option so far. It is a ready-to-use option, and the vendor can keep on updating it as per the industry trends to help you stay ahead of the rest.

Pros

  • Mobile-friendly, secure and scalable platform which can be integrated with ERP.
  • Low cost with no maintenance compared to other solutions.
  • Image-rich digital catalogue, with pricing and promotion feature.
  • Sales force automation to help sales reps achieve more efficiency.
  • Customisable features off the shelf with regular feature upgrades.
  • Easy to access customer support team to resolve issues.
  • An update for one company’s complex requirement can benefit all licensed users of the software.

Cons

  • Trusting B2B ordering platform to outside vendor can be risky, you will have to choose the best SaaS vendor for your needs so you have to do thorough research of the market.

Most of the companies prefer to go for cloud-based B2B ordering solution these days, as it keeps them ahead of the curve with all that cutting-edge technology, B2B business rules, engaging user experience to make the wholesale buyer’s ordering experience much better. However, you need to know that whether your SaaS vendor is really good or not. In order to help you with that, here is a blog for you: What To Expect From Your SaaS Solution Provider

Reading is one thing, but till the time you won’t see the software in action, you won’t know what exactly it can offer you. So, feel free to contact us for more information and demo.

Last Updated :
September 13, 2021
Published :
25/7/2020

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