A great B2B eCommerce website is paramount for growing businesses. Simplifying business transactions between retailers, wholesale distributors, and manufacturers is the main reason why such a site is needed. But going from knowing that you need to do it, to actually doing it, can be challenging.
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B2B vs B2C
First, let’s define the difference between a B2B and a B2C site. From an eCommerce standpoint, both business types rely on online transactions between a seller and a buyer.
In essence, both types of sites have the same processes running in the background. While B2C caters directly to consumers and usually offers products, B2B is more service-based. Still, there are many more similarities than differences.
B2C sites have the advantage of highly visible customer feedback. They can rely on their buyers to offer up feedback about the products they buy. The internet is full of such reviews. You can always search for video, blog, or product reviews uploaded by people that actually use a particular product.
A B2B site doesn’t have this luxury. But this doesn’t mean you can’t be creative about how you present your business. Incorporating testimonials, reviews, and acknowledgment messages from your clients is an important differentiator when building your landing page.
The following are 10 tips for creating a memorable eCommerce website:
1. IT is Key
Before even thinking about selling your services, you’ll need to do a bit of research. Knowing your business’ needs inside and out will determine the exact tech you will be using to build your B2B eCommerce website. You’ll want to make sure that the site you’re building can handle a plethora of requests. From secure transactions to other key features, you’ll need to look at what functionality you want your site to have. Doing this will align your business with continual growth.
2. Build a Brief
Knowing your values and business goals could be the most important factor in starting, developing, and growing your business. So taking the time to build a business brief is a must! You’ll need to think of your own requirements as well as those of your customers. Depending on your eCommerce platform necessities, you can forecast how your visitors will receive what you’re selling.
3. Customer Interaction
The way your customers interact with your site will either lose their trust forever or have them coming back for more. UI/UX design, defining what your customer needs might be, as well as foreshadowing future issues, are all important aspects to think about when building your B2B eCommerce site.
User Interaction (UI) and User Experience (UX) are like two sides of the same coin. They both refer to the front-end development of your website. Translation: how your customers interact with your platform and the feeling they are left with after the interaction. Elements like mobile performance, SEO, and site security are all things you need to consider. If your B2B customer makes a buy and leaves your site satisfied, he or she will likely visit again.
4. The Right Platform
Most B2B websites use Magento 2 as their go-to eCommerce platform. Magento holds the majority market share in eCommerce. Coming up behind is BigCommerce, Shopify, and PrestaShop. Either one of these can work well for you. It just depends on your particular business needs. We recommend Magento because it is the most developed and integrative platform so far. It is super easy to use and quite flexible.
5. The Right Dev Team
The world wasn’t built in a day. And neither will your site be. As such, arming yourself with patience is of high importance. Finding the right development team is key at this stage. You’ll want to partner up with people that show the same amount of interest, passion, and dedication as you do. They’re the ones that will take your vision and turn it into reality. So clear and open communication is a much-needed value for you to share with your dev team.
6. Site Theme
Sites like Themeforest, Colorlib, and Templatemonster offer a range of free templates for eCommerce businesses. If you want the best, you might have to spend a little money on a customizable theme that comes with all the elements your site needs. Needless to say, your development team can take the theme and work it into the awesome platform you envision having.
7. Integrate Your Site
The look and feel of your site need to work flawlessly with how the site runs in the background. Integrating design and functionality is an important step in helping your business run smoothly. Magento contains a multitude of elements, like payments, marketing, shipping, and more.
8. Super SEO
SEO is not dead! If nothing perishes and just changes, the same thing can be said about SEO. You can hire your own in-house SEO experts or work with an agency that specializes in SEO. These experts will need to be well aware of SEO best practices. They’ll make sure to fill in the metadata so that your site is visible to search engines.
9. Soft Launch
Now that your site is ready for launch you might get tempted to go all out. Yes, one of the main purposes of a website is to gain visibility, but a spotlight launch might not be the right choice. A soft launch means that your development team will have the chance to fix any issues and bugs quickly.
You can consider the first few weeks a trial run. This will give you the chance to identify errors and measure how your visitors interact with the site. The next step is to optimize your platform. This will ensure lower click-away rates.
After this trial period is over, your marketing team should take center stage and launch their strategy unencumbered.
10. Update and Debug
Regular updates are necessary for your B2B eCommerce website to continue to run smoothly. Constant debugging and quality content updates will keep you at the top of search engines and in the hearts of your buyers. You might want to add other services along the way, to keep your brand fresh.
A B2B website needs to have a B2C feel. In the end, the user is the decision-maker, and the decision-maker is a customer. Keep in mind that behind the clicks and purchases or cart abandonment there is a person. So tailor your strategy accordingly!