b2b marketing
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How to Incorporate eCommerce Sales into Your B2B Operation

B2B companies will reach $12 trillion in total revenue by 2020; in 2012, the number was only $5.5 trillion. That’s a steep increase.

There are many factors that are causing this, but one of the main reasons is because of online opportunities. Online B2B marketing is definitely a big contributor to the hike in overall revenue.

If you run a B2B operation, it would be a silly mistake not to take advantage of online marketing. But there are still a great number of B2B businesses that are reluctant to jump into online marketing.

Today, we’re going to talk about how you can leverage eCommerce if you run a B2B operation.

Design a Great Customer Experience

This example of great user experience is from a project we recently completed for MainEntree.com.

The buying process for a B2B transaction is starkly different than B2C. In B2C sales, customers will need great product copy, good site design, positive reviews before they will feel comfortable making a purchase. B2B, on the other hand, is far more complex. Depending on your business, you may need to provide information on freight options, inventory status, and order history before they make a purchase. Your customer shouldn’t have to go out of his way to find this information, nor should he be forced to call a sales rep to complete an order.

80% of B2B companies that are integrating eCommerce believe that customer expectations have changed due to B2C customers. So, everything that you would do for a B2C transaction will have to be applied in B2B marketing for eCommerce, while also fulfilling the various requirements for B2B sales.

Again, this means that you’ll have to follow a hybrid model if you want to see any success.

A Dynamic Checkout Process

rfq-exampleThe B2C checkout process is fairly simple, as payments are often exclusively made with a credit card. B2B transactions are far more complex. Prices are often not fixed, meaning that you have to provide a request for quote (RFQ) system. An RFQ system will have the buyer fill out a form that will detail their exact needs, and the sales team will need to send a response.

While some clients will pay-in-full with a credit card, some will want to make payments on the order. Payments can be made through a scheduled invoice.

Depending on your product, your shipping options will need to be complex. B2B products can be heavier than the average B2C product, which means that shipping costs will be higher. Along with a quote for the product, a shipping quote may be attached to the transaction.

The ideal B2B checkout process can be described in one word: flexible.

In B2C, businesses generally want to go as quickly as possible. You want the customer to “buy now”. In B2B, this often is not possible. In B2B, the sales process is often slow-burning, with customer-to-seller interactions (sales and support calls) extending the process. Your checkout process needs to be able to fit all of the unique needs of your customer base, or else you will be missing out on a lot of sales.

Customer Registration Is Near-Mandatory

In B2C marketing for e-commerce, guest checkouts (where the customer doesn’t have to register to complete the checkout) has its merits. In B2B, it’s almost always a better decision to make customers register on your site before a transaction is completed. B2B customers are definitely long term, and it will make more sense to give them their own account logins to view their order history and review transaction details, while also giving them the option to reorder quickly.

Informational Content Is Your Best Weapon

We’ve already addressed the fact that B2B sales are fairly complex. Because of this, you will need educational content to guide your customers through the buying process.

You will need:

  • Clear videos that can explain complex concepts (about your product, your industry, etc.) in simplified terms. These videos can consist of how-to tutorials, webinars, and demos.
  • Blog posts, whitepapers, and ebooks that go into deep detail about the effectiveness of your products.
  • Important data or specs that your customers will need to know before they make a final decision.


B2B companies shouldn’t be reluctant to dive into e-commerce. Online sales allow businesses to extend their reach, multiply their revenue, and become a more solidified presence in their market.

Are you ready to discuss your next web project with the leader in website development and digital marketing? If so, contact Zen Agency today! We are a group of WordPress and WooCommerce experts.


Joseph Riviello

Looking for a seasoned WooCommerce expert and digital marketing strategist with an unwavering dedication to client success? Meet Joe Riviello, the CEO of Zen Agency, with over 22 years of experience helping e-commerce businesses scale through holistic marketing strategies. Joe Riviello is a seasoned WooCommerce expert, digital marketing strategist, and CEO of Zen Agency with over 22 years of experience in the e-commerce industry. He is a passionate business development professional committed to helping businesses reach their full potential through various holistic digital marketing strategies. Joe's expertise lies in creating a seamless user experience for customers while delivering strong business results. He has worked with several high-profile clients across various industries, including retail, healthcare, and finance, helping them achieve their business goals through digital marketing solutions. Joe's journey to becoming a CEO started with his passion for technology and user experience design. He has always been interested in how technology can solve business challenges and improve customer experiences. Throughout his career, he has focused on creating e-commerce websites and digital marketing campaigns that provide an exceptional user experience while delivering strong business results. As the CEO of Zen Agency, Joe is responsible for leading the agency's strategic direction and ensuring that clients receive the highest quality of service. He is a natural leader who inspires and motivates his team to achieve their goals and deliver exceptional results for clients. Joe is a recognized industry leader and has spoken at several conferences on topics related to digital marketing, user experience design, and business strategy. He passionately advocates for data-driven marketing and believes that every business, regardless of size or industry, can benefit from a holistic digital marketing strategy.

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