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The 4 Most Overlooked Factors in Your B2B E-Commerce Success

March 04, 2016
Aaron Polmeer

By Today’s Industry Insider


There are many similarities between B2B and B2C when it comes to e-commerce. Some of these overlaps are easy to spot: key elements like intuitive search, high-quality product images, and the need for simple navigation.

However, due to challenges such as longer buying cycles, higher volume sales, lower price points, and multiple decision makers, the path to B2B success requires a subtly different approach than plain-old B2C strategies.

In fact, there are at least four commonly overlooked factors that — if harnessed correctly — can elevate you to B2B e-commerce domination.

Not surprisingly, each of these factors is rooted in B2C best practices. But what matters is how you augment, correct, and — in some cases — supercharge those B2C building blocks for a B2B audience.

1. Personalization

It’s a universal truth that people don’t buy from companies … people buy from people.

Personalization — or perhaps better, positioning yourself like a real person in relationships with other real people — is the number one overlooked factor in B2B e-commerce. This is because B2B businesses fear coming off as unprofessional, amateur, or “small time.”

Behind this fear lies a misconception that’s seductive precisely because it’s rooted in the very real difference between B2C and B2B transactions.

As Glenn Taylor explains, “B2B marketing, unlike B2C, is primarily account-based, which means that buyers are purchasing on behalf of an entire company. In enterprise, this process rarely involves one individual, but does make qualities of buyers at the account level more predictable.”

However, just because “this process rarely involves one individual,” does not mean that your B2B efforts involve no individuals. In other words, B2B doesn’t remove the need to address those individuals … individually.

The truth is that having a light, personalized, and casual tone in your communications actually boosts conversions and brand loyalty.

Even more to the point, Gartner predicts that by 2019, “B2B companies with effective personalization on their e-commerce sites will outsell by 30% competitors without the same level of personalization.”


Because humans not only want to connect with other humans … we all want to be treated like humans. And that means businesses buy from business they connect with — not stuffy organizations that appear cold, lifeless, and run by robots.

The primary way B2B violates personalization is by falling into the trap littering their communication and messaging with impressive-sounding words that are empty of meaning and detract from encouraging interaction with their brand.

Forbes’ list of the “The Most Annoying, Pretentious And Useless Business Jargon” — which includes impersonal phrases like “core competency,” “move the needle,” and “bleeding edge” — is a phenomenal resource to check your own communication against.

Providing a personalized experience also applies to lead generation.

For instance, Unomy specializes in building lists of targeted prospects — not just companies with their comprehensive profiles, but the names and contact details of real decision makers. This allows you to learn everything about the company in seconds and reach out to them in …read more

Source:: Kiss Metrics Blog