Omnichannel: B2B eCommerce Strategies and Pitfalls to Avoid with Alex Weston, SparkLayer B2B (episode 206)

by April Buencamino-dy

Alex Weston leads the commercial strategy for SparkLayer B2B, a fast-growing eCommerce B2B offering, which helps you to manage and grow your wholesale customer base. 

Omnichannel: B2B eCommerce Strategies and Pitfalls to Avoid with Alex Weston, SparkLayer B2B

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Dive in: 

[04:51] B2B offers scalable, economical way to expand. 
[08:26] Selling to businesses requires different strategy. 
[09:45] Merchants must plan and market for success. 
[14:16] Biggest used features of the SparkLayer system. 
[17:06] 50-50 split between experienced and new B2B merchants. 
[20:34] Insider Tips from Alex! 

Building a B2B Strategy for Success 

Alex says it’s a common misconception that simply having a website is enough for B2B eCommerce. B2B buyers have specific needs and buying journeys. A successful strategy requires: 

  • Understand your B2B customer journey. Research how your target businesses typically research and purchase products. 
  • Build a B2B-focused user experience. This includes features like bulk pricing, downloadable resources for resellers, and secure logins for negotiated prices. 
  • Develop a marketing strategy for B2B sales. Attract new wholesale customers and educate existing ones about your online store. 

Understanding Customer Needs and Tailoring the Buying Experience 

B2B clients often require a completely different purchasing experience. These include features of bulk ordering, custom pricing, and advanced payment methods. Additionally, business clients might need specific tools like CSV uploads for large orders and access to detailed product specifications and inventory availability. It’s important to understand the unique needs of B2B clients and design a user experience that caters specifically to those needs. This could mean creating customized portals that offer a tailored interface with features unique to business buyers. Doing this ensures that the solution aligns with how these customers prefer to shop and interact. 

The Long-Term Benefits of B2B eCommerce 

While increased sales are a key benefit, the value B2B eCommerce offers goes beyond just transactions. Just a few advantages Alex highlights are: 

  • Building strong partnerships. Developing long-term relationships with businesses that sell your products fosters loyalty and repeat business. 
  • Valuable customer insights: B2B buyers provide valuable feedback on your product’s performance in the market. Use this information to improve your product and better serve your customer base. 
  • Brand expansion & market reach: A B2B online store allows you to reach new customers and expand your brand awareness alongside your traditional sales channels. 

Listen to Alex’s Insider Tips on omnichannel!  

Interview links 

Sponsored by…

shopify plus

Shopify recently turned the tables on me, and took me from interviewer to interviewee.

Knowing, as they do, that the most successful retailers today are those that bridge the gap between online and offline and make it a seamless experience, Shopify wanted my thoughts on how to achieve truly connected commerce, particularly in the key areas of local selling, omnichannel selling and cross border selling.

You can read my thoughts, along with other commerce experts from Germany, France, Spain and Italy by downloading the report.

Full transcript to read & download:

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