B2B eCommerce Challenges for FMCG
As FMCG companies come to grips with B2B ecommerce, we highlight several key challenges brands need to overcome to succeed in this dynamic space.
Despite many financial opportunities of ecommerce, some companies are still wary of venturing into the digital space and delay their transformation efforts. There are many reasons for that, but, perhaps, one of the most obvious is that the B2B sales cycle is much more complex than in B2C. It proves difficult to adapt conventional B2B negotiations, demoing, contracting, procurement, and logistics into consumer-like digital experiences. So, what should FMCG companies do to succeed?
Below, we’ll outline the main challenges associated with moving B2B operations online and suggest strategies to overcome them.
Meeting the Requirements of a Complex B2B Sales Lifecycle
B2B procurement involves a wide range of individuals, each with distinct roles and responsibilities. There are individuals conducting the research, stakeholders whose buy-in paves the way forward, financial representatives approving the expenditure, and many others. The purchasing and approvals might take up to a year or longer, which is very different from Amazon's one-click purchases.
There’s a lot to keep up with and account for, so strong back office management that delivers the information to each stakeholder (as well as the company you trade with) is critical. To succeed, you need sophisticated digital tools such as customer relationship management (CRM) software, enterprise resource planning (ERP) to combine all your data, and self-service options so that customers can access all the information they need to arrive at a purchasing decision.
Reliable search options
It’s critical that your B2B buyers find what they want regardless of your products’ complexity. By improving your B2B site search functionality, you can create a dynamic, user-focused shopping experience on your website. A cognitive search engine is a particularly powerful tool that goes beyond returning single queries with keyword matches. It indexes the entire product inventory and product descriptions, thus eliminating the risks of running into a “no results” page, and delivers contextual results by understanding your buyer’s intent.
To learn more about using cognitive search capabilities, click on the banner below.
Flexible payment arrangements can help you retain existing and attract new customers. For example, by offering finance trade options and credit solutions, you can benefit your company and customers in many ways. A credit solution like Net 30 (or longer) can improve customer loyalty and enable your company’s business growth with immediate capital.
To learn more about a variety of different trade finance solutions, click on the banner below.
Shipping and logistics
Supporting B2B Customer Relationships
To learn more about strategies to improve B2B CX, click on the banner below.
Choosing the Right Technology
If you’re looking for possible solutions, as well as the criteria for choosing a platform, you might want to check out the link on the banner below, which will take you to a comprehensive guide with examples of the best software in the market.
Thankfully, Virto Commerce can help you achieve your digital ambitions at a fraction of the price. If you’re interested, let’s talk! Schedule a quick demo now to learn more.