Home Virto Commerce blog B2B eCommerce Platform Features: The Ultimate List & Expert Review

B2B eCommerce Platform Features: The Ultimate List & Expert Review

Oct 6, 2023 • 6 min

A robust and future-proofing B2B platform is a must for those who want their ecommerce business to be the first in the market. Such a platform guarantees that the business will keep innovating and serving as a customer-first platform, with a chance to disrupt most of the competitors and take the most significant market share. 

This is one of Virto's articles about B2B ecommerce. Check out our B2B ecommerce blog to find more information, or choose your best B2B ecommerce platform with us. In this article, we are going to discuss which B2B ecommerce platform capabilities and features are crucial in 2023, outline what's important, and explore the difference between out-of-the-box B2B ecommerce and all-in-one B2B ecommerce platforms.   

Factors to Consider When Choosing a B2B eCommerce Platform

While the most crucial factors for building a strong ecommerce are the platform's scalability, customizability, integration capabilities, security, user experience, and others, here at Virto, we truly believe that there are several more important things to start with:  

  • B2B ecommerce platform cost and readiness of the company to pay for the TCO, including innovations.  
  • The risk of disruption and understanding of your goals.  
  • Platform's technical maturity. This is not about what B2B ecommerce is, but the readiness of a platform to innovate. 

We started discussing these points in our other articles and are now going to come closer to specific capabilities and features that influence the platform's suitability for specific business needs.   

Main Capabilities of B2B eCommerce Platforms

Before we move to the features, let’s start with the core technical capabilities each modern ecommerce platform must have. 

  • The first one is scalability. The system must smoothly and cost-effectively expand its resources and capabilities, ensuring preparedness for any spontaneous business growth.  
  • Modularity must enable the system to effortlessly incorporate new entities, functionalities, and algorithms into the product. In Virto, for instance, business logic is split into distinct modules within the platform.  
  • Open code. Open-source systems facilitate the easy development of new features, reduce dependency on the provider, and enhance flexibility. 
  • Headless architecture approach. Headless architecture is ideal for creating and maintaining multiple websites with ease as it separates frontends from the backend.  
  • API-first framework. In an API-based system, external systems can support any functionality, such as catalogs and pricing. Moreover, it effortlessly connects new channels, like third-party platforms and diverse stores, to the platform.  
  • Adaptability and readiness for upgrades. A flexible architecture, like Virto Atomic Architecture™, ensures readiness for any modification. Valuable, regular updates from the vendor must be seamlessly installed. Modern solutions enable upgrading key features without disrupting other processes. 

Any platform offering these ecommerce capabilities can ensure having the must-have features we are discussing further. 

Main Features of B2B eCommerce Platforms

What are the features of B2B ecommerce? Let’s move to the B2B ecommerce feature list. Here, we will describe the following B2B-specific features: 

Core B2B Features
More Features
1. Users and Customers 
  • Access controls, roles, and permissions 
  • Organizations / multi-level accounts  
  • User Management 
  • Customer Support 
  • Granular roles management 
  • B2B personalization  
  • Account-based contract 
  • Mobile-Friendly Design 
2. Business Processes Management 
  • Flexible, customizable workflows  
  • Contracts management 
  • Order approval workflows 
  • Miti-customer contracts 
  • Contract based access to catalog 
  • Contract based pricing  
3. Catalog and Inventory 
  • Catalog Management 
  • Inventory Management 
  • Multi-warehouse inventory  
  • Integration Capabilities 
  • Search and Navigation 
4. Orders
  • Order Management   
  • B2B pricing management 
  • Payment and billing options 
  • Payment and Invoicing 
  • Quoting and Negotiation 
5. Analytics and Reporting
  • Reporting 
  • Analytics 
  • Reports creation 
  • Sales forecasting 
  • User behavior tracking 
6. Security
  • Security features  
  • Compliance management 
  • Data encryption 
  • Access control 
  • Secure payment processing 
  • Data backup and recovery 
7. Marketing
  • Customer’s segmentation 
  • Content management system 
  • B2B Marketing (promotion) management and merchandising 
  • Integration with segmentation software 
  • Rule-based B2B segmentation 
  • Coupons management  
  • Email management 
  • Content creation tools 
  • Behavior trackers 

1. Users and Customers

Access controls, roles, and permissions

Business customers have different degrees of accountability. What a purchasing manager can do, a sales assistant cannot and should not be able to do. That's why it's important to ensure users have access to only the information and actions that directly correspond to their job responsibilities. A B2B ecommerce platform typically has an administrative account that can grant access to other users depending on their job function and restrict access to information not intended for non-authorized users. This way, a purchasing manager gets to work with orders and RFQs, and an account manager with invoices and taxes.

In summary, this feature of B2B ecommerce should include the following features:

  • Access levels, roles, and permissions depending on a job title, responsibility, and accountability. 

2. Business Processes Management

Flexible, customizable workflows

One of the crucial B2B features you should look for in a B2B ecommerce platform is the ability to create custom workflows for both seller and buyer-related processes. Everything from onboarding new sellers or buyers to receiving requests for a quotation should be customizable and easy to modify. A B2B ecommerce platform should have flexible customizable workflows that would eliminate time-consuming tasks and make it easy to personalize both seller and buyer experiences.

Besides the described features, B2B enterprises must also think about the following:

  • User Management
  • Customer Support
  • Personalized Pricing  
  • Mobile-Friendly Design
  • Multi-Language and Currency Support 

3. Catalog and Inventory

Catalog management

B2B catalog management, personalized for customers, is among the most critical features of a robust ecommerce solution. Personalization options should enable you to show different catalogs and prices for different companies and tailor your recommendations and promotional campaigns on an account basis.

In summary, catalog management functionality should include the following B2B ecommerce website features:

  • For buyers: B2B personalized catalogs  
  • For sellers: account-restricted catalog management; required login functionality to access particular content  
  • Catalog search that connects to any search engine    
  • Personalized customer experience with personal pricing/catalogs/etc.

Inventory management

The system should facilitate the seamless tracking of stock levels, order fulfillment and predict inventory needs using historical data and trend analysis. It is vital to prevent both overstock and stockouts, ensuring that businesses can meet demand without unnecessary capital tie-ups in excess inventory.

Customization of inventory alerts, automatic re-ordering, and providing detailed inventory reports are some of the features that enhance visibility and control over the entire supply chain. This ensures a streamlined operation, reducing friction in the customer experience and potentially leading to increased customer loyalty and repeat business.

To use catalog and inventory management efficiently, companies should also consider integration capabilities to connect to any third-party system and such small but essential options as search and navigation. 

4. Orders

Order management

B2B order management significantly differs from order management in B2C. For one thing, B2C customers rarely order in bulk quantities, place repeat orders for thousands of dollars every month, or consistently order on behalf of other people – something which is all too prevalent in the B2B universe. A B2B ecommerce platform, therefore, should attend to those B2B-specific scenarios and provide the appropriate tools for sales/purchasing managers to assemble orders quickly and error-free.

In summary, a B2B ecommerce platform needs to create a convenient shopping experience for both sellers and buyers and therefore, should have the following capabilities: 

  • EDI/Punchout and dropshipping    
  • B2B order management 
  • Warranty support and RMAs   
  • Facilitated communication between sellers & buyers 
  • Saving and retrieval of multiple shopping lists 
  • Quick reorder functionality 
  • Bulk functions  
  • Payment method control (including credit/debit cards, ACH, etc.) &  
  • Purchase Order management    
  • Quotes & Request for Quotations (RFQ) 

Pricing management

Pricing in ecommerce is very complex because prices can depend on multiple factors, such as purchasing volume, quantities, discounts, purchasing frequency, and so on. Pricing can have a number of price points, tiers, and currencies, which certainly adds to its complexity. Your ecommerce platform needs to be able to account for such complexities and replicate contractually agreed-on prices electronically.  

In summary, a B2B ecommerce pricing management should be able to accomplish the following: 

  • Integration of multiple price lists with ERP and price engines 
  • B2B account-based pricing  
  • Contract-based pricing 

Payment and billing options

While a typical ecommerce business is spoiled for choice in payment methods, few B2B companies are taking advantage of the multitude of opportunities ecommerce offers, falling behind the payment technology curve. From our experience, most B2B companies still prefer dated payment methods such as a purchase order or paper check. However, there are other trendsetting players who refuse to put their long-term growth at risk and, therefore, embrace modern flexible payment options. And so should you. 

Thankfully, there is a number of technology solutions that can address the payment processing complexity in B2B and make the adoption of different payment methods quite simple. Your B2B ecommerce platform should be able to connect to different payment processing companies and payment gateways to ensure you can take advantage of different payment methods and offer your customers a better choice when it comes to payment. 

The most important task of the B2B ecommerce platform is to ensure it also has payment and invoicing features and quoting and negotiation capabilities. 

5. Analytics and Reporting


One of the many advantages of ecommerce solutions is the ability to keep track of important business-critical KPIs, gather valuable data, and analyze market conditions. Hence, a customizable reporting engine is a must-have feature in any given ecommerce platform.

In summary, a B2B ecommerce platform should have a customizable reporting engine with the following capabilities:

  • Track any metric 
  • Segment the results to narrow them down  
  • Integrate with third-party reporting engines and data analytics tools 
  • Have an intuitive user-friendly layout (dashboards, etc.) 
  • Have an exporting feature 


Analytics in a B2B e-commerce platform encompasses the aggregation, analysis, and interpretation of data related to customer behavior, purchasing patterns, website traffic, conversion funnels, and overall sales performance. Effective analytics tools enable businesses to derive actionable insights that inform strategic decisions, enhancing operational efficiency and optimizing marketing strategies.

The ultimate aim is to utilize analytics not just as a reactive tool, but proactively - predicting trends, preparing for market shifts, and perpetually aligning offerings to customer needs, ensuring sustained growth and customer satisfaction in the long run.

With the need for reporting and analytics, companies will strive to own report creation features, sales forecasting, and user behavior tracking opportunities. 

6. Security

Security features

A secure trading environment is a must for B2B ecommerce platform users. The transactions often involve significant monetary values and sensitive business data, so security features must safeguard users against numerous threats such as unauthorized data access, data breaches, and various forms of cyberattacks.  

Compliance management

Compliance features should assist businesses in adhering to tax regulations, data protection laws (like GDPR or CCPA) of any region. The platform should be able to automatically update compliance features to accommodate changes in regulations, ensuring businesses can maintain compliance without manual intervention.

To ensure the platform is safe, businesses must also engage with data encryption, access control and necessary regular backups. 

7. Marketing

User segmentation

To understand segmentation, let’s consider the following example.  

To achieve granular differentiation between different users and personalize the platform’s content accordingly, the Virto Commerce ecommerce platform uses user group attributes.  

A user group is an abstract entity that links a customer (or a group of customers) with personal products, prices, promotions, landing pages, and dynamic content. The primary purpose for introducing user groups is the personalization of ecommerce data for each customer.

User groups can be created and managed within the Virto Commerce system and integrated with third-party business software for efficient customer segmentation through APIs.

The user group segmentation is achieved through the application of relevant tags: by tagging products and price lists and assigning those tags to customers, you’ll ensure the customers can only access those products and prices that are relevant to their contracts.

You may want to watch our webinar on user groups for customer personalization in Virto Commerce to see the hands-on example of assigning different tags to customers and how this affects what your customers see when they log into their accounts on your ecommerce platform:


The tags can also be imported and exported from the external system (ERP, CMS) through APIs to work across the whole ecosystem and automatically apply to the correct entities with their respective contractual obligations.

In summary, segmentation (which can be implemented differently by different ecommerce solutions) achieves the following purposes:

  • Distribution of personalized content, including account-based pricing, promotions, and catalogs 

Content management system

To ensure that B2B buyers have enough supplemental information regarding their products, you need to provide as much information about your offering as possible, including product and services descriptions, warranty, technical specifications, high-quality images, videos, certifications, marketing sheets, and so on. The information you provide serves several purposes: first and foremost, it educated your users and allows them to arrive at a purchasing decision faster, second, it helps search engines discover your website and improves your search rankings. To be able to provide such information, your ecommerce platform needs to have a robust content management system that allows you to have complete control over the platform’s content and layout.

In summary, a B2B ecommerce platform needs to have a robust content management system with the following features and capabilities:

  • Allow full control over content, layout, embeddables 
  • User-friendly and intuitive 
  • Responsive and adaptive 

Marketing (promotion) management and merchandising

Although there’s no ‘one size fits all’ approach to B2B ecommerce, the common trend among B2B buyers to prefer a higher level of user experience is obvious. In order to provide those experiences, your platform needs to cater to users’ demands and expectations and personalize the displayed content accordingly.  Even though the goal for such personalized experiences in B2B is distinctly different to B2C – to help assemble orders accurately and faster rather than sell more or for a higher check – personalizing content for B2B clients is just as important. Personalization doesn’t end with showing contractually-agreed on prices and catalogs per respective accounts but also incorporates dynamic content and personalized recommendations like bundle products or substitute parts.

In summary, a B2B ecommerce platform should have the following marketing management capabilities:

  • Promotions and marketing campaigns for B2B and B2C
  • AI-powered personalization 
  • Product, customer, and shopping cart promotions 
  • Coupons 
  • Personalized banners 
  • Upsell/Cross-sell functionality
  • Rule-based recommendations 

​​​​​​​The modern ecommerce system must cover all the marketing capabilities possible, from email management tools to behavior tracking and analytics. 


More Features of B2B eCommerce Platforms

It seems that we have covered the core of B2B ecommerce features. However, there is always some room to grow. Another simple thing every ecommerce platform needs is the ability for customization. 

Here, we mean that the modern competitive market requires companies to grow quickly. This means innovation is needed more often than you could think. And innovations come with system flexibility. 

The modern B2B ecommerce platform must be able to improvise. We may provide a full list of the existing features, but the business will always need more. Newer unique features that their competitors haven’t implemented yet. Good examples of such “extra” features are AI tools, machine learning, sudden integrations and new ways of data management. 

This is why the list of the features we provide here is not perfect and still needs additions that appear every day. 

Out-of-the-Box B2B eCommerce Solutions

Now, it's time to discuss which B2B ecommerce platforms are able to provide it all. Let's start with the common B2B ecommerce solutions that provide features out of the box.

The idea of such solutions is to offer a certain set of features with the initial version of the solution. For example, when the company purchases SAP, it will definitely get a set of features straight after the solution is implemented. A good example is some B2B wholesale ecommerce platform offering features for wholesalers. 

The only mistake businesses make when choosing the B2B ecommerce platform is looking at the number of features "in the box." In reality, this kind of solution may work well for those businesses only who are not afraid of disruption but are ready to purchase a huge, well-known solution.  

Unfortunately, many of the out-of-the-box vendors who offer a huge set of features cannot offer the necessary flexibility and readiness to innovate. This is why choosing the vendor that offers "a box" of solutions, the first thing to do is to ask about the capabilities "outside" the box rather than counting the features included. 

All-in-One B2B eCommerce Platforms

All-in-one ecommerce solutions are another kind of platforms that offer "all features ready." They usually consist of many separate programs built for different needs: ERPs, CRMs, marketing tools, and more.  

The tricky part is that such vendors usually claim that the platform can "cover it all" as it includes "every occasion" features. In reality, such solutions usually offer an ecosystem that works well inside of it. Once you need any new feature, the solution will most possibly not be able to integrate with any third-party software. This means the business will be trapped in the network of one particular vendor. 

Which Features Does the Virto Commerce Platform Offer?

So, if the OOTB platforms do not offer the needed flexibility and all-in-one solutions may trap you inside, how do you choose the platform that will work?  

First, you need to ensure that besides offering OOTB features, the platform can develop new ones. The second step is to realize if it can work in the cloud and integrate with third-party solutions well. After two of these steps, you can move to the list of features offered. Let's see at the features of Virto Commerce:  

  1. In terms of Users and Customers, Virto Commerce B2B ecommerce platform offers a convenient interface, multiple users, and a simple and clear B2B account structure that is easy to track and control.   
  2. For Catalog and Inventory, Virto offers a high level of scalability to expand catalogs and a flexible inventory management system that keeps tracking every step of the sales clearly.  
  3. Orders and customer communication: Virto Commerce includes a unique contracts management system with the capability to build separate marketplaces for particular customers.  
  4. Analytics and Reporting embrace a robust system of reporting and tracking any action on multiple levels.   
  5. Security features include flexible permissions and SOC-II certification, guaranteeing the highest level of security.  
  6. As for the Marketing side, Virto Commerce offers deep personalization at all stages for vendors, partners, distributors, and end customers.


Though we have collected core features in this article (and haven't discussed dozens more), we truly believe that the first thing to do before diving into the features is the realization of the business's real needs. Include here the risk of disruption and readiness to pay for innovations, and the choice will be much clearer.

Nevertheless, after these initial steps, choosing the correct features is crucial. To collect your perfect set of features without excessive ones and with the capability to constantly create missing ones, choose a modular open-source platform. This choice will guarantee you will have a chance to avoid disruption and will future-prove the whole business strategy if it aims to take the biggest piece of a market.

In case you need to learn more about exact Virto Commerce features and capabilities, reach our expert team or order a free demo. To read other articles about choosing a B2B ecommerce platform or find out some B2B ecommerce examples, follow the Virto Commerce blog

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