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Is your website as good as Amazon

The industrial buying process has changed and to remain in contention industrial suppliers MUST adapt to customers’ new expectations. Exactly what are those expectations and what does it cost to meet them?B2B Industrial User Experience needs to match B2C

The latest evidence of those expectations may be this August 2014 study by Forrester Consulting for Intershop as reported by B2B end-user buyers now expect a consumer-like experience when researching and making business purchases online.

B2B end-user buyers worldwide were most likely to begin researching work-related purchases on search engines (35%) and manufacturers’ websites (27%).Most used forms of content when doing B2B eCommerce

The most important content are they looking for is Technical Brochures and Specification Sheets (61%), Instruction Manuals and How-to documents (46%), Videos (38%), Case Studies (31%) and Webinars (30%).

The information they find most useful when making purchasing decisions is that technical information (64%) but Pricing information is top of mind (73%) followed by Delivery Costs (53%) and Stock Availability (49%).

In our view here’s what it means for industrial suppliers.Most useful forms of information when doing B2B eCommerce

  • Industrial specific content like CAD Models of parts aren’t included in this general B2B survey so we’d add those in.
  • Most of us now search online for what we need, usually long before talking to potential suppliers. Industrial designers, engineers and buyers do too, especially when searching for configurable components and parts they need for their new product designs. Your products and site must come up when they search, searching on your site must be intuitive, they must easily find all the information they need.
  • The key is to make your customers experience of finding, selecting and buying your products as close as possible to what they have come to expect in B2C.
  • Fortunately, today, you can do all that and only spend a tiny fraction of what Amazon®, Grainger® or McMaster® spent to achieve it. B2B eCommerce SaaS solutions, equivalent to modern B2C websites, are now available. These enable industrial B2B eCommerce websites to be set up and operated at relatively low cost subscription rates with little or no capital investment. That’s why it has paid to be a fast follower!

That’s our take, what’s yours?

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