B2B ecommerce is growing at a staggering pace. Don’t believe us? By 2021 the US B2B market alone is estimated to be worth $1.2 trillion. Huge, right?
B2B organisations need to be getting ready now in order to compete. However, that’s easier said than done. To win big, companies need to design ever-evolving customer experiences that truly deliver.
The bar has been raised, forever.
Today, B2B buyers want the same experiences they receive on consumer channels. That means eBay, Amazon and Airbnb. And why wouldn’t they? Once the standard is set, there’s no going back.
We’ve pinpointed four emerging trends that B2B businesses need to focus on if they want to stand a chance of competing in the B2B ecommerce marketplace.
AI is here for good
The use of artificial intelligence in the workforce has gone from science fiction to an everyday necessity in the blink of an eye. Now, AI helps businesses with everything from support to analysis to automation.
Importantly, AI creates highly personalised experiences for customers. What’s more, the use of AI will continue at speed as the technology matures and machine learning develops bigger data sets (more on that below).
Everything is mobile
It seems obvious to say ‘mobile’ is a trend in 2019. But B2B companies have been slow to focus on it compared to B2C. As such, companies that create market-leading customer experiences on mobile will be well positioned for growth over the next few years.
This will be compounded by a younger generation entering the workplace who have never known a time before mobile devices. Feel old yet?
Machines are learning, fast.
As part of the AI explosion, machine learning gives businesses the power to analyse every tiny bit of customer data they have collected. Why is this so important? Well, it means companies can reliably predict future customer behaviour.
As data sets increase, so does the accuracy of machine learning. This, in turn, leads to more data and increased accuracy. Put simply, this is just the beginning. Soon, companies may know what you want before you do.
Internet of Things (IoT)
The IoT helps ecommerce companies to analyse customer needs at a granular level in order to differentiate themselves from competitors. Collected data from IoT connected devices is used to gain deeper insights about people’s habits, allowing for hyper-targeted marketing messages, tailored for individual customers, not just groups.
In summary, technology is making B2B commerce more competitive. Businesses simply cannot afford to ignore it. To be part of the trillion-dollar market in 2021, companies need a B2B Commerce strategy, today.