2D Sales Drawings
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Image credit – Digitalcommerce360.com
Industrial eCommerce – a 2019 Update
B2B eCommerce is big and growing faster than experts had figured – according to Forrester, U.S. B2B e-commerce sales surpassed $1 trillion last year, reaching that threshold a year earlier than a prior forecast, and will account for 17% of total U.S. B2B sales by 2023.
Last year we published a B2B Industrial eCommerce update and provided an Industrial eCommerce maturity assessment tool to help you monitor your progress. That tool still applies but of course there is more recent B2B industrial eCommerce news to share particularly about about new technologies, changing customer expectations and where industriak eCommerce leaders are focusing now.
Industrial Supplier Update
As the graph above shows, for about 32% of B2B sellers the top improvement priority is providing better and more detailed product content (ref: a B2BecNews survey of 63 B2B sellers). From our perspective on the industry we’re not surprised by that and all we can say is, “if you sell manufactured components or engineered products that get designed-in to others products don’t forget to offer 3D CAD models and 2D CAD drawings for viewing and download.” Beyond that here’s a quick eCommerce update on some of the leading Industrial players:
Latest Survey Results
Amazon Business Update
Obviously Amazon Business is now both an ‘industrial supplier’ and at $10B lasrt year, a very significant one too. We expect their rapid growth to continue – because upwards of 60% of product searches by consumers and business buyers start on Amazon. Amazon will continue to:
We’ve previously written about Amazon Business and shared our recommendations for industrial suppliers – see Amazon; Friend, Foe or Frenemy to Industrial Suppliers and 2 Industrial Suppliers eCommerce Experience with Amazon.
Implications and Recommendations
1. The industrial eCommerce results above show the switch to eCommerce continues to accelerate (Amazon Business is driving some of that acceleration) so we recommend accelerating your transition to eCommerce! If you don’t yet have an eCommerce strategy ask yourself these questions:
2. You need to decide if Amazon is a friend, foe or frenemy for you? We’ve written on this topic before – see links above for that guidance. Amazon’s product portfolio is a mile wide, but your product expertise and value proposition are probably a mile deep. Whether you decide to sell on Amazon Business or not, make sure your eCommerce activity presents your differentiating expertise (for example, with educational how-to videos, product CAD models, etc.).
3. eCommerce continues to mature so staying up-to-date with customer expectations is essential. Use our eCommerce maturity tool to help plan your next move. Either way and with the ISM January report showing activity in the manufacturing sector expanded, and the overall economy grew for the 117th consecutive month, is there a better time than now?
As always, if you have questions please ask them by leaving a comment below, click to ask a question or call for a discussion. In the meantime CDS will continue to keep developing its tools for online industrial marketing.