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eB2B - Relationship building in 2018

Make your B2B eCommerce experience work hand in hand with your sales team.

B2B Online is approaching in early May. We would like to share some advice for B2B Digital Transformation. Be sure to visit Thinkwrap Commerce at B2B Online at booth #311 if you would like to discuss your current and future business needs with one of our experienced professionals.

One of the hallmarks of the difference between B2B and B2C sales is the human relationship between the buyer and seller. B2B salespeople work hard to establish rapport with their customers, who expect a personalized approach. While research indicates that 70% of B2B queries being made on smartphones by 2020, industry leaders are looking for ways to translate that 1-1 relationship expectations into digital, and more specifically, mobile.

Some B2B salespeople regard digital tools such as mobile as a threat to their ability to forge meaningful relationships with customers. If anything, as SAP Hybris points out, it's another tool in their repertoire to make buyers' experiences more efficient, more customer friendly, and more profitable.

For these reasons, we'd like to share some ideas for making the desktop and mobile shopping experience more personalized or user friendly, empowering your B2B salespeople through applying a flexible, omnichannel approach. By utilizing technology effectively, customers will feel well taken care of before you even start talking to them


Using the customer's name

If a customer already has an account on your eCommerce platform, why wouldn't you use their name? This is a standard across retail eCommerce, whether mobile or otherwise. According to invesp, "59% of online shoppers believe that it is easier to find more interesting products on a personalized online retail store". This applies to both B2C and B2B buyers, with 80% of B2B buyers expect an eCommerce experience that mimics their B2C journey.

Simply showing a person's name on a shopping bag makes the buying experience more personable, allowing your customers to feel like the website "knows" them. A simple, "Hi, Ben!" adds a human touch to this technology, and is a cost-effective way to add personalization without needing much more than the information customers are required to share when creating an account.

Personalized Recommendations

Just like for B2C sites, it is now imperative that B2B eCommerce buyers are offered a personalized catalogue of items tailored to their past search or buying history. By using tracking along with AI, you can figure out what your buyers might want to buy - the more they buy, the more data you have to make recommendations, and build loyalty. This is done with a product recommendation engine - something Thinkwrap has built in to our FLASH commerce accelerator. Done well, along with other personalization features, it translates into 95% customer retention according to Forbes.


Customer friendly UX/UI

This should pretty much be standard in any eCommerce site. Why would someone shop with you if they don't enjoy the experience (and there are other sites that can offer this)? According to this study, you only have 50 milliseconds to make an impression on consumers, which translates into whether or not they want to buy from your brand.

If you can make that impact, you have to follow through with an experience that is comfortable, accessible, and easy. This includes good design, rich product information, and a well thought out navigation system, among other attributes. UX and UI on desktop and mobile are also different. The Interactive Design Federation outlines this in their article on Mobile Usability Research. The main point to take away is that mobile, is, well, mobile. Due to being able to move around, the interaction with your site may differ based on context, which is a big reason to want to specifically design an experience around mobile. 


Languages/Country preferences 

eCommerce allows us to access customers around the globe. However, when you've only been doing your business in English, or in one region, it can be difficult to make the leap to a multilingual site. Luckily, there are ways to integrate tools or solutions around this business problem, and Thinkwrap has built an integration for website translations into its FLASH accelerator.

Intercultural UX/UI design is an important facet of any internationally-minded digitalized business. As Prototypr blog points out, remembering Hofstede's dimensions of culture can help you determine factors like how much information to provide, what type of information, and what other critical factors might influence a buyer's decision to purchase. If you are focused on international expansion, recognizing these cultural differences is key in providing a personalized experience.



Personalization is key in B2B eCommerce for a simple reason. It means your customers feel appreciated by you, before a salesperson meets with them. After you have established a relationship, they can also continue to fulfill more routine orders through your site, without using valuable salesperson's hours that could be better targeted towards customers with compex issues.

Whatever your B2B Digital Transformation needs are, Thinkwrap is here to help you from end-to-end - from your early digital strategy, all the way through to launch and hosting.  If you ever have a question for our experts, we're a click away.



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By Aisling McCaffrey

Aisling is our Demand Marketing Specialist, and loves working with both technology and humans. She studied International Business (concentrating in Marketing) and has spent several years living and working in China, mostly in Shanghai, where she became passionate about global innovation and how the use of social media changes in different cultures. Aisling likes to keep up on internet trends - from business to memes - and is always looking for new ways to learn or entertain herself.

Tags: Omni-Channel Commerce, B2B, eCommerce, User Experience, B2B Digital Transformation Series