July 8, 2020

Optimizing the B2B shopping experience
for a post-COVID-19 marketplace

Author i95Dev Admin

The coronavirus outbreak has all but disrupted the B2B eCommerce space by causing unprecedented surges in demand and bringing to the fore evolving supply chain challenges.

The WTO report eCommerce, TRADE AND THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC reveals that the coronavirus outbreak has resulted in an increase in business-to-business (B2B) eCommerce. It also noted that the pandemic has highlighted the need to bridge the digital divide, both within and across countries, given the pivotal role the digital economy has played during the crisis.

Brands that plan to succeed in a post COVID-19 world have to start thinking ahead. Rather than ambling along tamely, they will now have to commit themselves to restrategizing long-term objectives, goals, KPIs and budgets.

Today’s B2B consumers demand the same customer-centric digital commerce experiences they’re treated to in their consumer lives. Staying on top of your game will require more than smart advertising and low prices. Now more than ever, businesses hoping to achieve competitive edge must prioritize customer experience.

  • Offer personalized, collaborative and customer-centric experiences to generate brand loyalty and increase sales for both manufacturers and distributors
  • Align all functions of the business architecture – marketing, sales, & eCommerce

A study by Gartner discovered that 81% of executives believe they’ll compete on customer experience alone in the not-too-distant future, but only 22% have claimed to have developed an experience that exceeds customer expectations.

As brands look to survive the COVID 19 pandemic and steer their businesses to minimize losses, here is a cursory look at important digital customer experience trends to consider:

  • A Salesforce study suggests 70% of business buyers expect an “Amazon-like” buying experience from their vendors, and 74% of business buyers expect vendors to provide personalized experiences
  • According to Gartner’s “The New B2B Buying Journey”, customers who perceive the information they received from suppliers to be helpful in advancing across their buying process were 2.8 times more likely to experience a high degree of purchase, and three times more likely to spend more

Improved Search Experience

  • 71% will seek out a competitor if finding a product or solution is anything less than convenient
  • 73% of B2B buyers say they want a personalized, B2C-like customer experience during the research phase, including fast response times and 24/7 availability—on the same platforms that they use as personal consumers
  • Offer a consistent search experience across all distribution channels

Voice Search

  • Leverage conversational search to guide buyers through complex purchasing decisions.In the year 2020, 50% of all the searches on the internet will be based on voice and 30% of all the searches will be done using a device without a screen. According to juniper research, 1.5 billion devices are acting as digital voice assistants, and are predicted to grow to 8 billion by the year 2023

Artificial intelligence

  • Reassess current buying experiences and leverage AI & Machine Learning to make customer experiences more seamless and meaningful.
  • This includes introducing bots that can assist both your internal teams and consumers and streamline returns processes
  • Use predictive analytics to offer tailored recommendations and increase buyer confidence

Update eCommerce platform

  • An omnichannel approach helps you provide B2B buyers with shopping experiences that mirror their B2C experiences and cater to their individuals needs
  • Manage demand-supply disruptions effectively by preparing the website to handle heavy volumes of traffic and sales

Partner with i95Dev to future-proof your business
i95Dev is a next-generation e-commerce company specializing in designing, developing and maintaining B2B/B2C omnichannel eCommerce solutions powered by Magento. We enable you to fully integrate the customer experience, rather than settling for modest, ad-hoc improvements.

Our work extends beyond eCommerce development. As leading systems integrators we support complex eCommerce integrations with various ERPs, POS, CRM, Accounting, Mobile and Social Applications.

If your business is reeling under the aftermath of the impact of the COVID-19 crisis, there is no better time than now to prioritize the path to swift recovery and future-proof your business for long term growth. If you’re ready to embrace a new paradigm and look at ways you can deliver more engaging consumer experiences and invest in new technology ecosystems to be more efficient and cost-effective, get in touch with us today.

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