In today’s increasingly digital world, we’ve become used to brand new innovations designed to save us time, money and unnecessary hassle. Online ordering is a prime example of this. With the advent of the internet, people were enthralled by the idea of ordering goods online, and many customers now exclusively shop in this way.
For B2B companies, the process of ordering online has been a little slower to catch on, but such companies can now easily take orders and process requests online. This has opened up a new world of opportunities for growth. And this growth is a force to be reckoned with.
Over the coming years we can expect to see a huge upsurge in the numbers of B2B businesses taking orders online. Frost and Sullivan have predicted that B2B ecommerce will hit $6.6 trillion by 2020, as more and more companies take note of the impressive opportunities that ecommerce provides. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key benefits of online ordering for B2B organisations.
Companies that had long relied on telesales ordering processes will see a huge benefit from moving their ordering online. One of the main advantages is the amount of time saved. With online ordering functionality in place, a company will no longer have to dedicate such a huge proportion of its time to taking orders over the phone. Telesales team members will then be able to focus on more important tasks which require a personal touch, for example managing customer accounts and nurturing new prospects.
The cost implication of online ordering is negligible, once a website is up and running. Whilst there is some investment needed initially to set up a website capable of taking orders and managing customer order processes, once these functionalities are in place businesses tend to see a huge cost saving. That’s because team members no longer need to spend so much time on the phone with customers, and only need to step in should a customer encounter a problem or need a question answered.
Convenient for customers
Online ordering options aren’t just great for businesses. They’re far more convenient for the vast majority of customers too. Customers appreciate the fact that they can place an order whenever they like, and don’t need to wait for a business to open before they can phone in to advise a team member of their requirements. Customers can place orders from any device, and from anywhere in the world. Businesses can even use their online ordering options to make waves in new markets, and expand internationally.
It’s a great idea to enable customers to register online and set up their own accounts. Not only will this provide your organisation with valuable data on their preferences, it’ll be more convenient for them too. Customers can easily see previous orders, and place repeat orders in just a few clicks. They can also add items to their basket whenever they have time, and go back to the site to place an order once they’ve finished shopping. Make shopping as easy as possible to boost customer retention.
Fuelling new opportunities
According to a study by B2B research firm Clutch.co: Less than two-thirds (64%) of small businesses have a website. That means that two thirds of businesses are missing out on hugely valuable marketing opportunities.
Stand out from the competition by using your website to advertise offers, and let customers know about loyalty schemes or any other promotions you’re running. You could even recommend similar products to customers, or provide them with more information on similar items that they might like.
Websites are a hugely valuable way of communicating with large numbers of customers, and exploring new marketing strategies. Analytical tools enable brands to create targeted campaigns based on customers’ actions, bringing in great results in terms of engagement and profitability.
Ecommerce is undoubtedly the next big thing for B2B businesses, so now is the perfect time to start thinking about ways to move your ordering process online. Thankfully, the Evolve team is on hand to assist you throughout the process, from planning and designing your website to seamlessly integrating ecommerce platforms and ERP systems. Talk to us today to start designing your online ordering process.