For a long time, there was a popular misconception that unlike B2C selling, B2B does not need to put the customer at the heart of its strategy.
Today, B2B sellers realize the importance of a customer-first approach and that customer relationship greatly affect their businesses in the long run.
Customer-first omnichannel commerce is becoming increasingly important for B2B sellers. This is because many factors; measurable or immeasurable, tangible or intangible; are affected by it.
According to several studies, omnichannel investments by B2B players result in greater buyer satisfaction and loyalty.
There are innumerable advantages of embracing a customer-first omnichannel strategy if you’re a B2B player in the e-commerce space.
Evolving needs of the B2B buyer
B2B players are increasingly taking to e-commerce, which means sticking to a single channel is no longer an option.
According to Forrester, over 15% of B2B sales in the US will come from digital channels by 2021, a solid 15% increase in 5 years.
The good news is that e-commerce platforms can capitalize on omnichannel strategies better than any other channel.
On the other hand, technology adoption has led businesses to make purchase decisions like consumers, which means they want fast online transactions, order fulfillment, and personalized services.
Yet, B2B brands fail to offer the kind of omnichannel customer experience they need to.
Improving customer experience through an omnichannel strategy results in personalized attention which can boost revenue growth immensely.
Converting a single-channel B2B buyer into an omnichannel buyer can increase their spend significantly.
And, more corporate buyers use analytics tools to optimize purchasing, which sellers can leverage to predict purchasing trends and offer personalized services.
With the power of analytics, brands can gather and synthesize customer data to uncover behavioral patterns – a goldmine for sales opportunities.
Greater buyer satisfaction
B2B buyers today expect the same intuitive and personalized experience they receive in the B2C world.
An omnichannel strategy gives sellers the opportunity to make sure that their customers are satisfied and get what they really want.
It also succeeds in giving a B2C customer experience to B2B buyers, which further increases satisfaction with the purchase experience.
By properly responding to their buyers’ problems, sellers have the opportunity to build customer loyalty.
This means that building omnichannel capabilities has never been more important for B2B sellers. Because digital is not the only channel that a buyer touches during their purchase journey, brands must integrate data from all channels to satisfy customers.
In fact, buyers will conduct online research even when buying offline, solidifying the need for an omnichannel commerce strategy.
Meeting customer expectations is an excellent reason for B2B brands to invest in omnichannel initiatives.
Another important reason to do so is to offer a consistent customer experience regardless of the channel since the customer lifetime value depends on a seamless commerce experience across all channels.
Building an omnichannel commerce approach
Building world-class omnichannel B2B commerce requires the right technology platform, qualified commerce professionals, and a solid customer-first mindset.
Therefore, B2B brands must differentiate their offerings in the age of the customer, delivering personalization across all stages of their journey.
Using technology to tap into the power of data to delight customers is no longer an option; it’s a requirement.
Because buyers expect to be engaged anywhere they are, brands should weave individual touchpoints together to deliver a seamless omnichannel experience.
Instead of organizing channels as silos, B2B sellers must adopt an enterprise-wide digital strategy to leverage their omnichannel capabilities.
To start doing so, embrace a powerful integrated technology platform that sits between and across enterprise systems and customer touchpoints.
Discern customer needs and predict buying behavior with the right tech suite. Put your customers first!
Source: Omnichannel Commerce