What Are Trends In B2B Ecommerce In 2021?
⏱ Reading Time: 8 minutes
Off the top of your head, try to remember how many times you’ve recently read the phrase “in these unprecedented times…” How many times did you, yourself, write it?
The truth is, many have wanted to avoid saying it out loud as if that would somehow stop it, but Covid-19 changed the world forever.
Every country has felt the economic impact of the pandemic. And many more brands, even well-known entities, suffered because of it.
2021 is well underway. But what is waiting for us around the bend? Which brand identity services could we employ to keep our business not only afloat, but dominating the market?
The World of Ecommerce Will Undergo a Global Shift
The global pandemic exponentially accelerated the rise of eCommerce and user’s personal online experience. Business priorities shifted and conventional sales had to take a back seat. Online personas became new rock stars as the digital red carpet rolled out.
The eCommerce market has become a business haven. Almost every B2B company had to take their business fully online, since what we perceived as everyday life until 2020, became unrecognizable.
There are various types of eCommerce :
- B2C – business to customer
- B2B – business to business
- C2B – customer to business
- C2C – customer to customer
B2B eCommerce refers to transactions conducted between two legal entities. Every company whose customers are other companies operates according to the B2B model.
Today, people are more actively searching for the necessary commodities on the web. From ordering food and the various specter of products online, to normalizing remote work, eCommerce technologies drastically reduced the difficulties that come with self-isolation.
This is where B2B eCommerce comes into play.
Picture 1. Future eCommerce trends
B2B Ecommerce Digital Sales Will Transition
In response to a massive influx of prospective clients, the online market tends to be oversaturated with many of the same services, products, and even similar brand voices.
Because of the new “gold fever,” B2B eCommerce companies are looking to be able to provide their clients with the best possible online experience.
The fact that shoppers switched to digital sales is expected. It’s old news by now. However, B2B and B2C models got closer than ever before.
Both B2B buyers and sellers prefer online transactions and remote interaction over the traditional face-to-face sales interactions.
Ecommerce can take different forms, involving different transactional relationships between legal entities and individuals. Such as:
- Auctions, etc.
70% of B2B customers actively master online cooperation, buying goods from different world markets while the rest communicate directly with suppliers.
Brand Identity Will Need To Improve
Many eCommerce businesses recognize the “new normal” needs such as convenience, affordability, safety and ease of purchase, etc. But just a few are truly able to upgrade, or even maintain their brand identity services in order to consistently spotlight the products and/or their benefits.
Your brand is far more than a name, logo or color scheme. It’s your very identity. Brand agencies and brand identity services are there to emphasize who you fundamentally are.
Brand identity services such as brand messaging, voice, design and social media positioning became some of the most important aspects of any eCommerce business. And just like with every facet of eCommerce, brand identity services evolved.
Previously, brand awareness had the ability to tip the scale. Now, it has conversion potential.
Niche B2B Online Marketplaces Will Increase In Popularity
By all means, massive platforms such as Amazon had tremendous profit in 2020. In fact, Jeff Bezos (who currently owns an 11.1% stake), saw his net worth jump by more than 50%!
But as the name suggests, the platform where you can find everything from A to Z isn’t necessarily tailored to the personal user experience and interest.
Other than more specific product offers, what differentiates niche platforms are their brand identity services – they also speak to a narrower audience.
And by keeping client data and contact after conversion, niche eCommerce businesses get to know their audience by actually using it. In this age of personalization and optimal customer experience that’s all that matters.
The Buyer Experience Will Influence Revenue
With a new wave of small-and-medium-sized businesses, standing out among the crowd is harder than ever before.
We already highlighted the need for brand agencies that provide brand identity services, but only a unique idea can set your business apart from the competitors.
Various studies agree that consumers will make bulk purchases in 2021, which is a huge opportunity for any business.
For sites, that means exponentially increased demand and profits. But since prospective customers are presented with more choice, there are more hurdles to overcome.
For example, they will compare the price-quality ratio between different outlets. The case for choosing one over the other will also be the convenience of the buying process, delivery and the original functions of the application.
An online business that wants to enter the B2B marketplace has to understand the consumer logic and develop services founded on the original idea.
Picture 2. Customer experience statistics
The Ecommerce Marketplace Will Enlarge
Since AliExpress and similar platforms entered the market, many individuals forwent their preferred retail services.
A similar thing happened in the B2B marketplace. What does that mean? In short, domestic buyers started buying their goods abroad, which is heading toward cheaper global manufacturers.
This ongoing process gives the opportunity for a rise in the global competition among numerous manufacturers, which in turn leads to a more flexible and affordable brand for a regular B2B buyer.
Dropshipping Will Expand
Drop shipping is not exactly a new retail fulfillment method and distributors have utilized it for many years, but the drop shipping trend accelerated in 2020 for a couple of reasons.
Global lockdowns and similar measures in the first half of the year caused irreparable damage to eCommerce supply chains. It may have been instrumental in wholesale businesses’ investment in restructuring their fulfillment infrastructure.
eCommerce demand naturally skyrocketed, forcing retailers to turn to suppliers for aid. Many retailers went under and many filed for bankruptcy.
Those who continued working turned to online sales and drop shipping for their financial situation, which made conventional ordering strenuous and unprofitable.
The question about the cost-effectiveness of drop shipping comes up every year, but 2020 gave us a definitive answer. It is, and it will most likely continue to be cost effective and worth it in the long-run.
Wholesalers and traders are changing their habits due to the pandemic. the situation will remain unchanged for a long time. B2B eCommerce has a great tendency to grow as a result of the continuous and accelerated growth of drop shipping.
Picture 3. How does dropshipping work?
New Payment Options Will Emerge
Besides a variety of marketing strategies, brand identity services and logistics, B2B clients value intuitive financial tools when it comes to their daily task-solving.
This is especially true for small and medium-sized businesses. With the outbreak of Covid-19, all categories of B2B buyers began to actively master a wider arrangement of modern payment systems.
With new channels, integrations and buying experiences, the arrival of new payment options, including new forms of B2B financing, is only a natural step forward.
In 2021, we can expect B2B companies to drastically streamline their accounts receivable infrastructure. For once they should turn away from direct, manual processes and accommodate payments to new trends.
This should address several problems present in the current system(s), such as digital transaction fees, transaction visibility, payment delays, etc. Thus, we’ll be another step closer to the retail, B2C model options.
Ecommerce App Development Future Trends
The average adult spends a whopping five hours a day on their phone! For that reason, all major platforms have already been optimized for the smartphone format. The order for application development spiked and most of these are mobile phone apps.
From basic features like product catalogs to more advanced features such as product delivery monitoring, B2B businesses are able to maintain their systems more efficiently and on a fly.
However, most of these functions are already applicable on most platforms. What can a B2B customer expect in a near future? Which emerging trends are getting ready to enter the eCommerce market stage?
It’s just a matter of time once the voice purchases, augmented and virtual reality, or much simpler electronic document management to be fully integrated into various B2B processes.
These trends are becoming increasingly relevant among the platforms that already started implementing the aforementioned features, and although they are still a minority, these pioneers will surely bear fruit of new(er) technologies.
The phrase “the future is now” may be worn out, but it’s no less true
By all accounts, 2021 is going to be the modern economic equivalent of discovering the “New World.” It will most likely be a defining year for eCommerce sites. Hop aboard!
Tomas is a digital marketing specialist and a freelance blogger. He is focused on new web tech trends and digital voice distribution across different channels
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