The Importance of B2B Website Development in the Digital Age
By Harjinder Singh
Statista predicts that the North American B2B online sales market is poised to exceed a remarkable $4,600 billion by the year 2025. The total market valuation was already five times that of B2C back in ‘20 ― it is expected to grow even further. There are multiple reasons why this is expected. But importantly for businesses, now is the time to prepare for an even more digital-driven future. eCommerce won’t be a part of it but is expected to be a key driver that will define new ways in which we currently perceive how business is conducted.
Broadly, B2B websites are platforms that allow businesses to browse, connect, transact, bid for, send proposals, and do a lot more. Since the buyers here are businesses, there are multiple ways in which the platform can facilitate their varying and complex requirements. Since the scope is so vast, b2b e-commerce platform development opens up opportunities ― not just for businesses, but for entrepreneurs who may not have any inventory of their own to sell.
How? Let’s read ahead in this blog to understand the critical part that B2B website development is slated to play in the time to come, and why is this good news for entrepreneurs considering taking a slice of the lucrative eCommerce market with their own websites.
The Secret Behind the Rise of B2B Website Development
If you are keenly observing the global industry trends, you might already be aware of why B2B is on the rise. There are fundamental reasons for this, let’s discuss some of the key reasons below.
- eCommerce maturity: For Western markets, B2C eCommerce has been transforming experiences for more than two decades. But even for markets in Asia, the past decade has put the eCommerce machinery in motion. With users getting used to the benefits of digital trade, it is natural that B2B too has started to gain from it.
- B2B Websites are beyond just buy and sell: eCommerce websites are perceived as platforms for trade. For B2B though, they can be much more. They are buyers' first touch point for business interactions, a medium for brands to recalibrate their sales strategy, a platform for enterprises to streamline procurements, and more.
- Global connections: Supply chains across sectors are increasingly spreading across the globe. With the emergence of firstly China as a manufacturing capital fro the world, and then subsequently other countries in Asia, trade is no longer restricted by geographical boundaries. B2B websites can streamline such activities through digitally connected channels.
Types of B2B Website Development
Not all B2B websites are the same. For businesses that have their own inventory to sell to buyers, one option is setting up a website for their brand. This B2B website will be a medium for them to sell to their buyers. So the interaction is here between one seller and its buyers.
But there is another way. And it is arguably a more popular way that even brands in the first scenario consider onboarding. B2B websites like Alibaba are what is called “B2B multivendor marketplaces”. The way it works is that an entrepreneur or a business sets up the infrastructure of a B2B website. It manages all the operations of the website. It then invites sellers to sell their products or services to buyers.
For B2B, a multivendor website has an extensive scope, for example:
- A B2B website like Alibaba or Amazon business where sellers sell their products to buyers.
- A B2B website like Fiverr where “the buyers” post their requirements and the service providers then bid for providing the services.
- A B2B website like Indiamart where the intermediary approaches businesses to build their profile and post what they offer. The actual transaction may or may not occur on the website.
- A B2B website like LinkedIn is based on an aggregator model i.e. It provides a platform for information to be listed about businesses and professionals.
While these are just a few examples, there are many more such examples of how a B2B website can be built.
Reasons Why B2B Website Development is Important
We are in a digital world where an increasing number of potential businesses and clients are exploring the internet for solutions to their needs. This factor will gain more significance as the world progresses even more towards a digitally connected world. Let’s explore the reasons why you should invest in B2B website development.
Enhance Brand Recognition
The more we progress towards a digital-driven future, the more imperative it is for brands to have a digital presence across not one but multiple channels. Apart from just offline sales, businesses must reach out to where the buyers are. This includes brand websites, multivendor websites with extensive reach, social media channels, and more.
Having a website for your B2B business not only helps reach a wider audience globally. It also allows businesses to provide international delivery and shipping facilities to multiple countries This helps gain global reach all while seeking huge exponential growth in terms of revenue.
Quicker Sales and Fulfillment
Having a B2B eCommerce website facilitates the rapid processing of orders. A key bottleneck for businesses is a longer sales process. This is navigated to some extent via a B2B website. It is much quicker for buyers to simply browse, click and buy. Moreover, B2B businesses immensely benefit from the increased accuracy and speed of handling orders. As a result, leading to enhanced customer satisfaction, increased transparency of exact delivery times to B2B users, and increased operational efficiency.
A B2B eCommerce website is a vital asset for B2B businesses, offering the advantage of around-the-clock sales. The business gains the ability to interact with potential clients and secure sales seamlessly, breaking down geographical barriers and time constraints. Online presence further boosts exposure, attracting new customers and propelling business growth on a global scale. All in all, a B2B eCommerce website not only helps expand your customer base; it helps effortlessly boost your sales. Building a website streamlines the entire ordering process.
The advantage of customer insights via Analytics
Another great advantage of having an eCommerce website is it helps track KPIs. Having features like analytics and reporting provides detailed insights into the business sales. As a result, you can keep an eye on pivotal metrics about where the business is doing well and areas that need improvement.
Digital channels have the potential to attract buyers that offline can never. The limitations of the websites is purely restricted to the extent and effectiveness of the digital marketing efforts of the company!
Enhanced operational efficiency
A B2B website also provides businesses with the opportunity to streamline their operations like inventory control and shipping. Also, it assists in ironing internal sales processes with integration with ERP tools. Furthermore, website integration opens up more opportunities to automate legacy tasks and operations.
5 best practices for B2B website development
The performance of your B2B website hinges on adopting key practices that are more likely to yield favorable results. Let’s see what are they:
Curating a well-defined buyer journey
The performance of any business relies on understanding its target audience, mapping the user journey, and curating the logical flow of events on the website ― from the buyers’ first touchpoints right till the transaction is completed on the website. The more intuitive the process the higher conversions will be there on the website.
Make the website SEO-friendly
Unlike physical brick-and-mortar stores, virtual businesses will only be visible to the buyers if they appear on popular SERPs, and more. Hence the business must be SEO friendly.
Consistent Brand Experience
The overall design of your B2B website communicates an overall impression to the user. The styles, fonts, colors, logo, and other design elements fuse to build your brand. Moreover, the consistency in these elements across the website is equally important.
For B2B website design, things like appropriate use of white space, minimalist elements, and a professional overall theme help to build the overall user experience.
Include the right B2B features
B2B users operate very differently when compared to the B2C space. Here the decisions are triggered less by emotions and more by ROI, business relations are significant, transactions can be of higher value/volume, and sales processes are likely to involve negotiations.
To suit such needs, prioritize including features such as Request For Quote, Buyer-Seller direct communication channels, hide prices, part payments, and more.
Consider Using Turnkey Solutions
While B2B website development is complex, there are some turnkey solutions available in the market that allow entrepreneurs to get started right away with their B2B website. This can save them both time and resources. Among such solutions, Yo!Kart B2B stands out as a leading solution that has been purpose-developed with the right B2B features, offers multiple pre-integrations that assist business agility, offers high performance with industry-leading security, and gives businesses freedom by being a self-hosted solution.
According to Gartner, 80% of B2B Interactions Between Sellers and Buyers will happen via Digital Channels by 2025. Hence, as more opportunities emerge for entrepreneurs to get started with their own businesses, B2B website development gives them the tools to enter an industry that is ripe with increasing interest, both from B2B buyers and sellers. Hence, investing in a website is a pivotal step for your company’s success. Creating a successful B2B website includes figuring out what your business needs, goals, and budget are. These needs in turn are best identified by conducting thorough market research.
A well-planned B2B website can give businesses inroads into a sector that is on the rise and is expected to do so in the years to follow.