What Is B2B eCommerce? A Complete Guide

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Our modern world has witnessed immense technological advancements with even better improvements being recorded every passing day. 

 

Almost everything in our world has now gone digital; even business operations are not left out. 

 

Companies have now designed an online model that sees to the seamless execution of their business operations.

 

Businesses no longer have to process their inventory orders by making physical appearances or manually placing their orders in queues. 

 

All these can now be done online without hassle. Businesses have begun making use of the e-commerce model to go about their activities of buying and selling. 

 

What Is B2B eCommerce?

 

What Is B2B eCommerce

 

B2B eCommerce, otherwise known as business-to-business electronic commerce can be described as a type of transaction that happens online between two businesses. 

 

In other words, it refers to the online buying and selling of goods and services between two businesses. 

 

E-commerce suggests that orders are made and processed electronically or digitally between two companies or business outfits.

 

Over the years, the B2B e-commerce industry has witnessed tremendous progress in operations. With more advancement in technology, there’s been lots of improvement in this aspect. 

 

The recent statistics on B2B e-commerce showed that about 74% of B2B buyers make their buyers research online for prospective companies that can take care of their orders. 

 

Also, nearly 70% of B2B buyers prefer to make purchases from a website rather than source products via sales representatives. 

 

These statistics show the growing prevalence of the B2B e-commerce model with sure improvements in the coming years.

 

B2B e-commerce usually occurs on the internet through websites such as company websites, brokering websites, e-procurement websites, information websites, and specialized industry portals. 

 

The company websites serve as the primary medium for hosting B2B e-commerce transactions. 

 

By displaying catalogs and prices of various products, a company can easily advertise and sell products directly to its business customers.

 

The brokering websites operate as a middleman between those seeking to procure goods and services and those who would do the supplying. 

 

E-procurement websites allow purchasing agents of companies to send orders of needed supplies to different vendors. Sales proposals are submitted and the best vendor is chosen. 

 

For the specialized or vertical industry portals, they provide a more targeted approach than the e-procurement websites. They also provide information, product listings, and support for buying and selling banking transportation. 

 

Information websites primarily provide information about a particular industry to companies to ease their e-commerce transactions.

 

What Is the Significance of B2B?

 

Every business needs to depend on another business to do business. What keeps business owners in business are the goods and services in stock. 

 

The moment they are exhausted, you need to make purchases from other businesses to continue business. For example, a wholesaler cannot do business without the supplier or importer. 

 

So also, a wholesaler is essential to the business of a retailer. The B2B model explains a state of interdependence amongst various business outfits.

 

B2B Vs B2C Commerce 

 

B2B Vs B2C Commerce

 

It is important to note that B2B is quite different from B2C commerce. B2B commerce takes place between two businesses while B2C commerce occurs between a business and a customer or various customers. The differences between these two are summarized as follows:

 

  1. B2C operates on smaller purchase sizes with smaller purchase amounts while B2B involves larger orders with higher purchase amounts.

 

  1. Purchases are made for immediate use in B2C while they are for long-term purposes in B2B.

 

  1. The buying process is a single step and proceeds in a shorter sales cycle for B2C while in B2B, the buying process is long and involves a complex sales cycle.

 

  1. The sales process for B2C is service or product-driven while for B2B, it is more relationship-driven.

 

  1. In B2C, buying decisions can be made emotionally or by impulse while in B2B, highly calculated and rational buying decisions are made. 

 

Types of B2B eCommerce 

 

Different types of B2B commerce exist; they are involved in the aspects of manufacturing, wholesale, and distribution. 

 

Manufacturing

 

Manufacturers are in the business of large-scale production. With a B2B model, finished goods are sold to other manufacturers, wholesalers, or suppliers. 

 

For example, companies like Apple and Tecno produce phones and other gadgets and supply other companies or businesses that deal in phones and accessories.

 

Wholesale

 

Wholesaling works by purchasing products or items from other businesses (e.g. manufacturers) and reselling them to other businesses (e.g. retailers). 

 

These products are usually procured at cheaper prices from manufacturers or distributors and sold at a retail price to retailers. 

 

Wholesale B2B e-commerce follows an all-digital process from pre-ordering or ordering to delivering. 

 

Distribution

 

After the manufacturer completes the manufacturing process, it is either the manufacturer sells directly to the wholesalers or end customers or engages the services of a distributor. 

 

The duty of the distributor is to advertise the goods and products of the manufacturer and get them across to intending business buyers. 

 

He or she also takes care of the logistics involved with delivering the products in the shortest possible time, this is usually done online, especially within the B2B e-commerce model. 

 

Common examples of companies that are involved in B2B e-commerce include the famous Alibaba which is one of the largest and successful commerce sites in China. 

 

The Alibaba website is best suited for B2B e-commerce unlike Amazon since different businesses can easily go to the website and get vendors that are wholesalers from whom they can make bulk purchases of desired products for their business. 

 

Amazon is more or less suited for the B2C e-commerce model. 

 

Other companies like Microsoft and McKesson also operate within the B2B e-commerce model as they supply software and health care products to other companies that market the same. 

 

Are you a business owner looking for a trustworthy and reliable e-commerce company to partner with in getting your desired products, look no further as Globallyfulfill is available to serve you well. 

 

Globallyfulfill is an eCommerce dropshipping company that will partner with your company and swiftly attend to your clothing and apparel needs. You’re just a step away from your B2B e-commerce needs.

 

How To Start Your B2B eCommerce

 

How To Start Your B2B eCommerce

 

There are 4 stages of starting your B2B eCommerce. Here are they:

 

1. Startup stage

 

All you need here is a creative idea to work with. Your creative idea should identify the particular product (s) you intend to deal with. 

 

You can then go ahead to launch your business by setting up your workspace. You will also commence your business activities whether it’s manufacturing, wholesale, or distribution. 

 

While starting up, there might be challenges with managing cash reserves, establishing a market presence, reaching appropriate target audiences, and facing competitors; be rest assured that you’ll pull through. 

 

Every big B2B eCommerce establishment today started small and had to overcome challenges to get to where they are today; never forget this. 

 

2. Growth stage

 

The growth stage is also called the survival stage. This is where your business overcomes the challenges faced in the startup stage and begins to record some good progress. 

 

Profits become better at this stage and give you an avenue to pump more funds into your business. You might need to have a good marketing strategy to boost sales. 

 

Establishing an online presence for your business is very important to help it thrive. This stage is also not without some challenges. They include challenges relating to handling more customers. 

 

Customers would increase at this stage and you might need to get more hands to help you or structures for automation in place to deal with the challenge. 

 

Other challenges with this stage include increased competition and having to manage increased revenue. Sticking to your core values and business plan would go a long way to resolve these challenges.

 

3. Expansion stage

 

As you begin to gain more ground and establish more presence in the B2B e-commerce business, growth becomes more pronounced. 

 

A common challenge in this stage is increased competition. 

 

One important way to overcome this challenge is to gain more ground in the market by targeting a wider market audience and expanding into new products and services.

 

4. Maturity stage

 

This is a delicate stage in your B2B e-commerce business; it is possible your profit margin gets smaller compared to the ones recorded in the expansion stage. 

 

At this stage, a likely challenge is saturated markets. It’s never the time to relax but to explore more viable products and expand more into new markets. 

 

You also might consider branding to make your business stand out from the saturated market. 

 

Globallyfulfill is the right company to help you with that. With Globallyfulfill’s excellent branding services, you’re sure to hit the market with better products and make better sales. 

 

Conclusion

 

B2B e-commerce is a viable business model that eliminates the problems associated with B2B commerce. 

 

It provides a seamless execution of business orders and deliveries. The B2B e-commerce model is easy to set up and has numerous advantages over the B2C model. 

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