Customer expectation is something businesses have noticed is rising steadily. To embrace change, businesses adopt digitization and innovation to plunge into the future. While few succeed in their endeavor to innovate, most businesses still fall behind.
When a business is advised to innovate, this doesn’t imply a business should do something out of the box. Innovating isn’t about progressing in discontinued fashion. That’s an erroneous belief many businesses hold.
Transformation doesn’t take place from scratch. It’s an unbreakable continuation of the same well-founded model that the business was built upon, but with streaks of reinvention and renovation added to its digital infrastructure.
Ecommerce challenges businesses deal with in today’s consumer-driven markets.
In today’s business realm, a customer is an active force, shaping and reshaping businesses worldwide. Consider, for instance, that a direct-to-consumer or DTC model of business is on-trend now.
Not adhering to it could present an unimaginable loss to a business.
Ill-conceived e-commerce strategies drive businesses and distributors miles apart.
It’s not physical distance, but a digital void that drives businesses to fritter hard-earned fortune away in the blink of an eye.
Businesses also must learn to drift as the technological landscape continues to flow unanchored.
A technology-driven inventory management system that streamlines a business’s ordering process is a lease on life.
A lifeline for any organization, not fodder for executives to spew skepticism against digitization and innovation.
A Hybrid B2B & B2C Ecommerce Platform: Why do you need it?
As said, e-commerce is in continuous flux. Its scope for innovation has put businesses on their toes!
According to a study, 81% of consumers in the next 5-years will be shopping from direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands.
That prepares B2B companies to optimize for direct-to-consumer (DTC) selling as soon as possible.
While B2C has taken a giant leap in that direction, B2B is yet to follow. The onus is on B2B to change, reorient, and reinvent, not B2C.
The time has come when B2B e-commerce should start selling to businesses as well as consumers, at the same time.
So far, the inability to do so has been detrimental to B2B businesses. Perhaps that’s why hybrid is steadily becoming a requisite for e-commerce strategy.
However, if a business has separate platforms for B2B and B2C, the realization of a hybrid platform is hard to imagine.
Consequently, businesses can see why they need hybrid e-commerce to manage B2B and B2C commerce from a single dashboard.
How’s Hybrid Ecommerce Different from B2C and B2B?
First of all, business to consumer (B2C) involves selling directly to individual shoppers. That is to say, the sales process is centered on an individual customer.
On the other hand, business to business (B2B) involves selling directly to businesses.
Here, multiple factors and stakeholders determine the outcome of the sales process. If B2C is emotion-driven, B2B is excessively logic-and-rationality-driven.
In stark contrast, hybrid e-commerce is a resultant outcome of B2C and B2B convergence.
In other words, as an e-commerce platform, hybrid e-commerce is a double-helix of B2C and B2B, where they’re intertwined like a DNA molecule.
Hybrid eCommerce strategy, therefore, forges together the best of B2C and B2B into a unified platform.
So, instead of creating two separate marketplaces, businesses can actually reap the benefits of both using a single hybrid platform.
Here’re five reasons why you should go hybrid with your e-commerce strategy.
- Separate customer portals cater to B2C and B2B needs from a single dashboard.
A hybrid e-commerce platform gives businesses an opportunity to configure customer portals separately.
This is highly needed in order to cater to DTC demands where pricing varies so dramatically.
As is obvious, pricing for businesses can’t be fixed like it is in the case of consumers.
In the former, it varies based on factors such as the volume of purchase, association of business with a B2B organization, etc.
Additionally, it is a hybrid e-commerce strategy alone, that can offer businesses multi-site capabilities. As a result, businesses can add market-specific personalization to their e-commerce sites.
- Single datastore to deliver content and data to various teams seamlessly.
Target markets no doubt differ significantly, but product information is identical across channels.
Non-availability of a hybrid platform results in inefficiencies that are detrimental to a business’s scalability.
Creating separate content and product catalogs for various e-commerce platforms are fraught with inefficiencies.
A hybrid e-commerce strategy relieves businesses of content duplication.
From a single datastore, businesses can deliver content seamlessly to various teams such as sales and marketing without duplicating it.
- Single dashboard for omnichannel viewing of customer data.
A hybrid e-commerce platform offers businesses a unified viewing experience of customer data from a single dashboard. Businesses can track customer journeys and interactions with their business.
A business’s marketing team could utilize it to gain a holistic view of B2C as well as B2B customers.
With a hybrid e-commerce strategy businesses could avoid data silos, hence streamlining omnichannel customer viewing.
- Explore B2C and B2B markets without having to re-platform.
DTC is the future of e-commerce. That’s why B2C and B2B commerce is yearning to benefit from it. Consumer-oriented brands or B2C are preparing to sell to businesses, whereas B2B is trying to explore the consumer market.
With a hybrid platform, businesses can take advantage of both markets without having to re-platform.
A hybrid e-commerce strategy facilitates digitalization. Therefore, it empowers businesses to roll out sales strategies more efficiently and cross markets.
- Stay ahead of your competition with a hybrid e-commerce strategy.
If a business plans to create a B2B platform for its B2C business, it would need to spend countless hours to configure, customize, and personalize the new store.
Businesses can do it as seamlessly as possible if they go for a hybrid e-commerce platform. Instead of creating a new platform out of scratch, businesses can just switch to another platform, begin product configuration, and start selling.
A hybrid e-commerce platform with tentacles in both B2C and B2B commerce offers businesses a common digital infrastructure with shared customer data, product information, content, and design layout.
As a result, B2B buyers could draw a B2C-like experience from B2B businesses. The same holds true for B2C businesses also, which can cater to B2B buyers.
Source: Ecommerce Strategy