4 Tips to Ensure B2B E-commerce Success

B2B e-commerce is estimated to grow bigger in the next 4 years. The market is projected to reach $1.13 trillion by 2020. Many organizations want to launch their B2B e-commerce efforts, but they don’t exercise due diligence in advance of launching their initiative. This results to less optimal deployments, ineffectively structured organizations, and missed opportunities. Here are 4 tips to ensure B2B e-commerce success:

  • Choose the right platform. Choosing the wrong platform prevents you from taking full advantage of the opportunities right away. Launching your B2B ecommerce efforts can be time-consuming. The last thing you want is doing it all over again just because you made the wrong choice to begin with. To make sure you choose the right platform, define your requirements in detail. Include information about contract support, flexibility, integration, pricing and workflows.
  • Focus on user experience. Never underestimate the importance of user experience. If it is poor and your website is difficult to use, you will drive potential customers away. Make sure your site search, navigation, listing pages, shopping cart, product details and check out process are optimized to meet modern standards. Invest in building a great user experience, so your customers will keep coming back.
  • Use your sales team strategically. Don’t keep your e-commerce initiative remote to only few top executives. Align sales with e-commerce because it becomes even more powerful when integrated to your system.
  • Planning is critical. E-commerce does not just run itself like a virtual machine. You need to make internal investments on web merchandising and operations, digital marketing, content creation, technology and customer service. You don’t have to build a huge team immediately. You can outsource specific expertise such as technology. The right solution will help you accelerate your efforts to ensure B2B e-commerce success.

The B2B e-commerce market is growing larger every day. It is predicted that by 2020, 27% of B2B transactions will be conducted online. Imagine what it can do to your business. Although implementation may take a lot of time and resources, the ROI for your company is real. Do it right and you will reach B2B e-commerce success in no time. Click here to see what our B2B e-commerce solution can do for your business.

5 Common Product Data Problems and How PIM Solves Them

Have you ever searched for a product online only to get irrelevant results? Many people sell stuff, but you can’t find what you are looking for. The lack of adequate product information management or PIM is the problem. Managing products is important to the success of online selling because it:

  • Gets products to market faster, with complete and accurate details.
  • Makes products searchable so search engine can easily find them.
  • Maintains a large assortment.
  • Organizes items into collections for easy shopping.
  • Updates product data quickly and at a lower cost.

E-commerce sellers experience limitations with their shopping carts. They spend hours to prepare data for their online store, and eBay or Amazon listings. Many e-commerce carts are not designed to support unlimited digital assortments. The tools to import, consolidate and manage large amounts of information effectively are not present. That’s why PIM solutions are important. They help collect, store, format, organize, improve and share data.

PIM solves these five common problems with product data:

  1. Managing multiple excel spreadsheets. When dealing with multiple spreadsheets of product data, it is easy to make mistakes – especially relevant if they are all in different formats. PIM provides a centralized location. It allows you to maintain one master catalog for your products, manage all data in one place, and publish subsets of your master catalog. In a word, it makes expansion to new channels easier.
  2. Custom code or scripting to fix product data. Are you assigning your senior developers to write code every time you need to fix bad data from your clients? You are wasting your time. With PIM, you can build formulas, use expression language and concatenate multiple fields in just a few clicks.
  3. Wrong product information published. When you see a product listed wrong after you publish it, you feel terribly bad. It’s worse when your customers point it out for you. This can be costly and may impact your credibility. PIM puts data validation processes in place. It sets error notifications, restricts listings with incorrect or incomplete data, and verifies how products will be listed in real-time.
  4. Not grouping products for better selling. Collections or groups of products are built for sale, seasonal promotions, or for easy navigation. However, these can be a hassle – most of all if you have to filter through thousands of products. PIM automatically builds groups or collections by specified criteria to save time.
  5. Inability to customize data by sales channel. Keeping every sale’s channels requirements in line can be a challenge because they require different formats. eBay’s product field requirements are not the same as Amazon’s. PIM creates and saves reusable templates for every channel every time you create and export product listings. It allows you to market faster with complete and accurate product information.

Shoppers, nowadays, have short attention spans. They will quickly jump onto a new website if your product catalog appears to be outdated or contains insufficient product description and display. What they see in search results and after they reach your online store impacts their purchasing decision. If your competitor has a visually alluring website with the right product descriptions and photos, your customers may be easily swayed. PIM solves these common problems, so you can be the competitor who wins the sale.

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