Enterprise-grade B2B Commerce to Enhance Traditional Salesforce
B2B organizations are going through a transformation. The consumerization of B2B, where buyers show similar behavior as their B2C counterparts, has greatly increased expectations. The traditional salesperson-led business processes have shifted over to the modern digital landscape.
In only two years, from 2019 to 2021, B2B digital commerce has increased by more than 22%. And, 65% of B2B businesses now have digital as their primary channel. (Source: McKinsey & Company Global B2B Pulse, Jan 2019-Nov 2021)
As digital commerce has quickly grown in importance and prominence, here are the top 3 key features and capabilities in an eCommerce solution to bolster the traditional salesforce channel:
1. Essential features
- Content & Data management
- Pricing and Promotions Management
- Transaction Management
- CPQ functionality
These core capabilities help B2B organizations create the frictionless commerce experiences that their buyers now expect, all the way through the buying process. First by having the full customer relationship with the organization available to customers and sales and service teams, and also providing transparency on pricing, quotes, orders, fulfillment, billing, service tickets, etc.
Next, by digitizing the sales process, B2B organizations enable buyers with self-service tools, customized pricing, and product transparency.
Buyers save time with reordering, negotiated pricing, and purchasing on their own time without the need to call a sales representative. Organizations gain efficiency and have the salespeople grow the account base instead of being order-takers.
2. Channel Flexibility
- Sales & Channel Enablement
- Subscriptions functionality
During the pandemic, many B2B organizations had to pivot and add business models to survive. Whether it is adding a D2C channel or subscriptions model, having an eCommerce platform that can help an organization quickly adapt became more than a nice to have, it became existential. And having the ability to run multiple business models all on a common platform provide huge advantages in leveraging the IT resources, process and data across the different business models. The agility and flexibility of the solution helps organizations not only survive but thrive and differentiate from their competitors.
3. Operations and Support
- Partner ecosystem
- Integrations, Operations & Infrastructure
Having a strong ecosystem of solution partners is important because often times you will want a specific capability to differentiate your business from others. And it is very important to have the right partner to help set up the solution. A broad ecosystem with many experienced SI’s provides greater choice and confidence that the implementation will be successful. Customer references are also an important consideration, to see similar organizations that had success.
Integrations help extend the platform and meet specific business needs unique to your business, and to deliver a truly seamless experience.
The infrastructure of the platform is important as online orders increase, scaling to meet the demand without any disruption to the business.
In closing, there are many factors to consider when choosing a B2B eCommerce solution. According to Andy Hoar, industry expert and author of the 2022 Paradigm B2B Combine report, “SAP Commerce Cloud is particularly well-suited for enterprise B2B companies looking for an industrial strength B2B eCommerce solution with especially robust pricing and promotions capability that can be customized for particularly complex scenarios via an extensive network of integrators and partners.” SAP Commerce Cloud has a “Partner ecosystem that sets the standard for a global Systems Integrator (SI) footprint.” (Source: 2022 Paradigm B2B Combine report)
Also, “Customers spoke highly of how SAP Commerce Cloud can be extensively customized, provides a strong out-of-the-box PIM experience, and offers a pervasive partner ecosystem.”
Download the recently released 2022 Paradigm B2B Combine, Digital Commerce Solutions for B2B report.