Modern communication and a positive shopping experience – B2B e-commerce will follow in the footsteps of B2C

Millennials are increasingly entering the business world, report shows
B2B e-commerce – e-commerce, young entrepreneurs and employees are driving a series of changes in online B2B commerce. The user experience related to the purchase process is gaining importance, including the adjustment to the preferences of buyers, also in the field of communication. As a result, the B2B e-commerce sector will become more and more similar to the B2C sector.

New generations, new expectations

Generation Y is an increasingly important group among entrepreneurs and employees. Familiar with digital realities or even unfamiliar with pre-internet reality, they integrate perfectly into the digital environment, and at the same time have specific expectations of it. They have gained experience in e-commerce as consumers, on platforms that compete to provide shopper comfort and positive impressions. Millennials now expect the same standards in B2B commerce.

The most important trends – as well as the characteristics of millennials – have a global reach. Young entrepreneurs have not been used to non-transparent and visually unappealing websites since the beginning of the Internet. They also expect complete information and value online communication. There will be a constant number of these people, which is why B2B e-commerce needs to catch up to the standards known to consumers of B2C e-commerce in this matter – forsays Małgorzata Nesterowicz, director of the service sector and family businesses at Santander Bank Polska.

Global Domestic Market Trends

It is no different in Poland. As the report shows B2B e-commerce – e-commerceprepared by Santander Bank Polska and Mobile Institute, the most important phenomenon for Polish B2B e-commerce is the growing influence of millennials, caused by the pandemic
e-commerce, as well as the growing importance given to the customer’s shopping experience.

What trends do you see in B2B e-commerce (online business shopping) in your industry? N = 546 companies

Source: Report B2B e-commerce – e-commerce

The B2B market is beginning to be characterized by more and more phenomena better known from the B2C market. Shifting shopping habits and expectations from the B2C world to B2B processes is actually the norm, especially for young people. 39% of companies surveyed notice that millennials and businesses prefer to shop online. In the world of the so-called new normal, the overall cooperation experience is increasingly more important than the product itself. B2B companies must therefore put in place solutions and processes that are increasingly adapted to these new needs of digital generations, which not only makes it possible to maintain current business relationships, but also to establish new ones. At the same time, it is worth taking advantage of the opportunity presented by B2B e-commerce and reaching new markets and optimizing existing business, after all, the Internet has no limits – explains Justyna Skorupska, head of the B2B e-commerce content group at the Chamber of Electronic Economy.

Of the businesses surveyed, a whopping 39% noticed that Gen Y and Z business customers don’t need to contact a salesperson at all. 38% believe that the pandemic has finally proven the universal relevance of the e-commerce channel in the B2B sector; in the sub-group of companies selling online to businesses, this percentage reaches 52%. In turn, 28% of all entrepreneurs believe that client experience it is just as important in B2B e-commerce as it is in B2C. The same goes for the belief that, in the B2B channel, the importance of modern and more direct communication is increasing, including on social networks.

Customer habits developed in the B2C industry prove to be valuable advice for B2B sellers. Obviously, to meet the standards of consumer platforms, investments are necessary. But those who do it effectively will not only be ahead of the competition, they’ll also simply gain tools for even more effective sales. The digital possibilities in the field of personalization of the offer or communication have the same potential in B2B commerce as in B2C and it is worth using it to the fullest – notes Maciej Nałęcz, sector analyst at Santander Bank Polska.

Online presence alone is not enough

Experts involved in the preparation of the report B2B e-commerce – e-commerce indicate that online sales for businesses have not yet experienced the most dynamic growth. Then, however, competition between sellers will also increase and simply launching online sales will not guarantee success in digital.

Already now, business representatives notice that companies are starting to buy mobile (20%), manufacturers are trying to reach the end customer directly (19%), and the omnichannel approach is gaining more and more importance (16 %). This is accompanied by pressure to shorten delivery times (noted by 24% of companies) and the lowest possible prices (21%). Therefore, it is not enough to transfer a paper catalog to an online store. Modern multi-channel platforms will be needed, allowing customers to buy conveniently, providing adequate recommendations and, if necessary, providing support at each stage of the transaction, as well as after its implementation.

At the purchase stage, “self-service” will be increasingly popular, not contact with the seller, but a transparent presentation of products, an intuitive purchase process and precise offers. All of this can be provided by modern e-commerce tools. The human work should be focused on advice and customer support as well as additional things, such as useful content on the website. Professional customers are as loyal as private individuals, but that has to be earned. Patterns can be provided by B2C e-commerce – summarizes Małgorzata Nesterowicz, director of the service sector and family businesses at Santander Bank Polska.

Full report B2B e-commerce – e-commerce prepared for Santander Bank Polska by
The Mobile Institute under the patronage of the Chamber of Electronic Economy is available at www.santander.pl/raportecommerceb2b.

The report was produced under the patronage of:

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