How retailers can exploit the potential of digitization – eCommerce Magazin


B2B companies have that The potential of digitization recognized for their business model, however, they are still far from fully exploiting it. in the B2B commerce it’s no longer just about offering an online shop for business customers.

B2B commerce: digitization is becoming a compulsory discipline

Companies also have to consider how processes – which still often take place manually – can be automated and digitized. In addition, there are the changed behavior and the increased demands of B2B procurers on the purchasing process. B2B retailers now expect the same shopping experience as in the private sector as B2C shoppers.

A Digitization strategy for e-commerce becomes an obligation for companies in order to remain competitive in the medium to long term and to stand out from the competition. It is no longer enough to just put a print catalog online. Companies need to integrate B2B commerce into their overall digital strategy – without making this part more complicated than it is. The rule is: think big in processes, but then in develop small components.

Full flexibility in B2B commerce

A large number of companies that focus on B2B customers now offer their business customers digital procurement options. However, these are often based on rigid, outdated systems that cannot keep up with today’s requirements for an online presence. Bringing together data on a trading platform with thousands of products from different sources, manufacturers and partners is a major challenge for B2B traders.

A scalable and flexible software solution is indispensable in order to design systems made up of technologies, data and processes in such a way that they can adapt to new market requirements at any time and grow with new business areas and communication practices.

Business customers expect an individual shopping experience

What has long been required in the B2C area is still receiving too little attention on the B2B side: content that can be personalized and an individual approach. It is often forgotten that the B2B customer also wants real and human interaction. Buyers from the B2B sector often adapt the shopping experience they are used to from their private end customer behavior and want a solution that is tailored to their needs. The existing customer data – if they are intelligently linked and used – also offer huge potential for a personalized customer journey and excellent user experience in the business environment.

From legacy system to state-of-the-art online presence

Digital trading in the B2B area can be far more complex and volatile than in the B2C area, since digital ecosystems are necessary that can be flexibly adapted to new requirements. Microservices-based and headless commerce solutions enable seamless migration from a legacy system with little to no downtime. Since the front-end and back-end are fundamentally decoupled, new functions and products can be added seamlessly and system development can be provided without buyers perceiving this as a disruptive factor in their customer experience.

With the flexible API architecture of commercetools The latest AI technologies, ready-to-use commerce services and third-party systems can be quickly and easily integrated into the respective ecosystem.

Also read: Digital customer communication protects against the negative consequences of the corona pandemic

B2B commerce
The author Hauke ​​Rahm is VP Customer Success at commercetools.