If eBay and Amazon have taught us anything, it’s that eCommerce is here to stay. But more than that, it is becoming the number one way people buy, period. But in the B2B world, many vendors don’t offer their products online. They don’t think it will help sales because:
- Their products require consultation in the sales process
- Their products aren’t shippable or easily shipped
- They only sell to a very specific industry or just to government
- They only sell locally
But as many businesses are proving, you may need to reexamine those assumptions. In the last few years, major trends in how and what companies purchase online have expanded into products and services that once were considered only a “face-to-face” purchase.
The purchasing process is triggered for many purchasing organizations via an online product display or offering, which then leads to a sales consultation and ultimately a sale.
In fact, many larger purchasing organizations today will not even consider you unless you have an eCommerce presence. This holds true whether you sell nationally or just locally.
Larger purchasing entities – especially government organizations – have begun using their own private buying environments, or private online marketplaces. This allows them to control how they purchase goods and services.
That’s why you will see a growing number of these organizations encouraging vendors to set up one-to-one sites and online catalogs within these private online marketplaces. Smart suppliers will take a proactive approach and position themselves among the first inside these environments.
Purchasing for larger items, ‘delivered and installed’ (or configurable) items, as well as services are all increasingly being sold via online shopping solutions. Because of the built in convenience and cost savings, this trend is likely to stay. So if you want to make sure that your products are being viewed by these buyers, you will want to reconsider your online product sales strategy.
Give us a call, and we can show you how other successful suppliers are doing it. As always, there’s no obligation or hassle, and we’ll provide you a free analysis of your specific situation.