This is Chapter 5 in The Guide To B2B E-Commerce
B2B E-Commerce Best Practices
For a list of other B2B E-Commerce Resources.
Related B2C E-Commerce Best Practices
While I subscribe to the belief that we should be building our own B2B e-commerce best practices, we shouldn’t recreate the wheel. Consider the following general best practices
- SEO – rich snippets, static URLs, on-page SEO.
- Search – search synonyms, auto-suggest, relevance ranking,
- Multiple-level category catalogs with filtering by multiple attributes.
- High quality images with multiple view settings, 360 degree views, zoom.
- Product relationships – cross sell, up sell, replacements, parts, accessories, warranty, etc.
- Bundling, product sets, kits, and assortments.
- Product availability information, shipping options.
- Promotions – buy/get 1 free, X% over $Y amount, promotion codes, etc.
- Display support for multiple formats: 1920px wide desktop, smartphone, tablet.
- Account information – invoices, payments, order history, shipping status.
- Shopping cart – save for later, email cart, stored credit cards.
Why do we need our own best practices?
For many years, we have depended on B2C to give us our best practices. However, B2B e-commerce is different. We have different challenges and even different goals. B2B brands find it hard to provide easy to use customer experiences, while almost half believe it’s difficult to manage complex organizational structures such as different user roles and multiple business models, touchpoints and data domains. B2B e-commerce best practices give us a guide that we can follow to meet our customer expectations.
B2B E-Commerce Best Practice Checklist
Collected from eCommerceInsiders.com
- Conduct a regular product search and SEO audit on your website
- Have you mapped your priority customer personas and have you tracked to which landing page and product pages they are most likely to want to visit? Can you create email newsletter groupings that correspond to each of your main customer persona profiles?
- Can you set up your email marketing data analytics so that you can review how many subscribers open and click-through on your emails? Can you experiment with the timing of your newsletters – monthly, six-weekly, 2 months, ten-weekly – to determine if people are more likely to open emails if they come at more frequent or less frequent intervals?
- Do you make sure you have links for more information throughout your emails to engage with readers who are showing signs of greater interest?
- Are shipping and delivery details prominently explained on your product ordering pages and on your home page?
- Do you have testimonials on your website sharing customer experiences related to shipping and delivery reliability?
- Do you have a specific page with more detailed information on shipping and delivery expectations, including a reliability metric showing your previous experience in managing delivery in a timely manner?
- Do you enable customers to track their orders throughout the delivery process?
- Do your data systems review what products are being ordered by new business customers? Are these products likely to be replenished on a regular basis? What systems can you put in place to help reordering to be automatic or one-clickable?
- Are you able to to offer integrations so that business customers can order directly from within their systems, or that you forward the paperwork they need for their financial book-keeping automatically after orders are processed?
- Are your systems able to set prompts so that business buyers are able to ensure authorizing policies are automatically factored in when ordering online, e.g.. purchasing limits are signed off by the appropriate decision-maker or reminders are given if ordering amounts are above company policies?