Over the past couple of years, e-commerce businesses have been on the rise. These days, almost all brands have an online shop where clients can purchase both goods and services. Statistics show that more people prefer to shop online rather than visit physical stores.
As an e-commerce entrepreneur, you need to have an excellent B2B ecommerce platform to win over your clients. The platform should feature plenty of tools that improve automation and customer experience.
The ideal platform should have all of the essential features ranging from payment gateways to automated logistic services. In this guide, we take a look at some of the things you should consider when choosing a B2B ecommerce solution.
Some people choose to host their e-commerce platform in an in-house data center. However, this can be an expensive venture, especially for SMEs. You also need to hire technical staff who will monitor the data center 24/7.
A B2B ecommerce platform with cloud-native support is hosted on a cloud. There are plenty of cloud service providers, and some of the common ones include IBM Cloud, Amazon Web Services, and Azure from Microsoft. Cloud service providers offer data security and bandwidth management services among others. Virto Commerce, for instance, uses Microsoft Azure cloud services.
An open-source platform gives you the authority to modify the codebase and integrate third-party plugins and APIs. This gives your developer team the freedom to customize the platform to deliver the best customer experience.
Most people access the internet using their smartphones or tablets. It is great to go for a B2B eCommerce platform that features a mobile-first design. Ideally, the web pages need to be lightweight for faster loading. The pages shouldn’t have too many redirects.
Research shows that most clients will leave a site if it takes more than three seconds to load. Every e-commerce site should feature a responsive design for displaying web content in the right manner across all platforms.
Handling B2B transactions can be hectic, especially if you’re dealing with clients from different countries. You need to get a payment gateway that can handle different kinds of transactions. The platform and payment feature should also deliver a smooth shopping experience.
Flexible payment options are essential on any B2B ecommerce platform. The payment gateway should handle both online and offline payment modes.
Total Cost of Ownership
How much will it cost to buy and set up the platform? These are essential questions that you need to ask yourself when reviewing different e-commerce solutions. Review if you will be paying for feature updates and third-party integrations.
We recommend going for an open-source platform where you can install feature updates at zero cost. There are plenty of open-source platforms in the market, and the great thing is that they cost less and have almost similar features to premium solutions.
A good B2B ecommerce platform should help you scale your business without affecting performance or customer experience. Make sure you review all the options available on the market before making your final choice. Better yet, you can also consult a web expert to help you select the best solution available on the market.