Unlike B2C brands, the B2B sector has been a little slow in adopting eCommerce. Take the case of electronic payment, which is an integral element of eCommerce. According to stats from a 2018 webinar by PYMNTS, although 67% of B2C payments are electronic, 64% of B2B payments still rely on cheques.

Several factors have been behind the slow adoption of the B2B eCommerce technology. One such factor is the initial cost of fully converting to electronic payments. This factor is so crucial that a while back, over 46% of suppliers in the United States noted that they could not afford to convert to electronic payments.

That said, things are changing, and the B2B sector is beginning to embrace eCommerce. A report by Forrester noted that the B2B eCommerce industry in the United States will be worth $1.8 trillion come 2023.

Why the Accelerated Growth?

It is simple really; the B2B sector has finally realized the benefits inherent in eCommerce. As with any technology, it takes a while for the recipients to be fully convinced. However, once the positives become evident, then all the resistance breaks down. Consider the following key benefits.

1. New Sales Channels

A powerful eCommerce website can expose the organization to new sales channels from businesses that wouldn’t have otherwise heard of the brand.

2. More Customers

B2B buyers are heading online to find manufacturers, distributors, and compare prices. If a brand can manage to find a good eCommerce website developer who will optimize the B2B site to ensure it has public-facing catalog pages and that it is geared towards driving revenue, then these B2B buyers will locate the brand.

3. Better Analytics

A powerful eCommerce site provides the ideal platform for an in-depth analytics campaign, which will, in turn, increase revenue in the future. However, for a brand to enjoy the benefits of analytics, the B2B eCommerce website developers must first ensure they integrate analytics with the brand’s ERP. That way the brand can evaluate sales effectiveness, inventory turns, marketing campaigns, engagement and product mix.

Having seen the benefits that are spurring the B2B sector to adopt eCommerce, here is a look at how eCommerce is, in turn, changing the B2B industry and what this means for the future.

Ecommerce is Changing How Payment is Made in the B2B Industry

Deloitte did a survey a while back, and they noted that the B2B eCommerce payment sector is evolving faster than anyone could have predicted. The numbers indicate that come next year, the industry will be worth $2.77 trillion in the United States alone. That means the number is higher if you include the rest of the world.

Another survey from BigCommerce notes that the old B2B model of orders and payment is changing. The survey analyzed over 500 international merchants and noted that in recent years, the majority of B2B orders are through websites, mobile phones and emails.

Website orders are at the top of the list with 80%, followed by mobile phones at 77% and email at 72%.

With regards to payment, the BigCommerce report notes that credit card payment is the most popular at 94%. Mobile wallets are also gaining ground with 26% of payments utilizing mobile wallets such as Amazon pay.

Ecommerce is Helping the B2B Industry to Mitigate Risks

To succeed, a brand must first mitigate the risks that will cause failure. One of the biggest risks in the B2B industry is investing so much only to end up with minimal sales.

However, with emerging technologies such as cloud computing, an eCommerce website development company can help you set up an inexpensive B2B site that you can scale in the future as needed. If the site is well optimized, then as noted above, it becomes very easy to leverage that site to open new sales channels, attract more customers, and perform analytics that will see you better the brand.

That way, you only end up investing as much as you can afford, and the likelihood that this minimal investment will bring massive results remains high. In turn, the risk that your brand might lose everything decreases.

Ecommerce is Fulfilling a Need for the New Crop of B2B Buyers

In the past, if a brand wanted to do business with another brand, then they would first call the salesperson. After significant discussions, the salesperson would then sign a deal on behalf of the company.

Today, the first stop for everyone is online. A report by Forrester a while back showed that over 74% of buyers research online first before making an offline purchase. Google also notes that during the B2B buying process, approximately 42% of buyers use their mobile devices first to conduct online researches.

Essentially, this new age of buyers is largely made up of millennials and millennials are digital natives. For millennials, nothing is real or authentic until it is online. Consider this interesting statistic from digital commerce: 60% of buyers will cease communicating and doing business with a B2B vendor if they find it hard to understand the vendor’s mobile app.

That proves how eCommerce and, in particular, well-implemented eCommerce is playing a key role in fulfilling the need of the current crop of B2B buyers.

What Does This Mean for The Future?

The changes eCommerce is bringing to the B2B industry will continue to take hold. In addition, new changes that are reflective of the emerging technology will also be seen. For instance, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (V)R, and Chatbot technologies are on the rise.

The chances are high that in the future, B2B eCommerce websites will take advantage of these technologies to create more powerful experiences for potential clients. Note that eCommerce development companies are already experimenting with these technologies, so it is only a matter of time.

Also, as noted above, the B2B eCommerce industry will continue to grow and in the future, it might even catch up to the B2C eCommerce industry.


The changes eCommerce is bringing to the B2B sector are incredibly positive. Admittedly, some negatives might crop up, for example, fraud. However, the positives will far outweigh the negatives.

Author's Bio: 

I, Kuldeep Kundal, the CMO of Cyber Infrastructure (P) Limited, and expertsfromindia.com is the trademark of the CIS. I have been publishing technology content for the last ten years. Being inquisitive towards technology and management strategies has impressed upon me the mantra of success is to gain knowledge to share it.