Whether you’re just getting started with B2B eCommerce, or you’ve been taking orders online for years, setting expectations for the results from B2B eCommerce is important. There is seemingly infinite data available to you, but you need to hone in on what the most important metrics to watch are that are going to affect your overarching business objectives.
Here are 4 goals successful B2B eCommerce companies set to make sure their online ordering experience is driving the results their business needs:
2 Common Goals Successful B2B eCommerce Companies Set:
- Increase Conversion Rates: Conversion rates are defined as the percentage of visitors who complete a desired action (i.e. placing an order). Average B2B conversion rates depend on a number of things, including your industry, traffic, the conversion type (purchase vs. download vs. sign-up), and more. As you start tracking, you can also start optimizing your conversion rates to help you accomplish your desired results. Experiment with things like more or less product information; promotions, special offers and coupon codes; the length of the check-out process; search capabilities; and more.
- Increase Average Order Value (AOV) or Line Item Orders (LIOs): Depending on what your buyers are ordering from you online, measuring Average Order Value or Line Items per Order helps provide insight into how much you’re getting out of every order. Often when companies are considering B2B eCommerce, they are worried that removing a the sales rep interaction will decrease average order value. The reality is that more often than not, companies experience an increase in AOV when their buyers start to self-serve and place orders online. The availability of additional product information, visibility into promotions and offers, knowledge about related products, and other cross-sell/up-sell strategies can contribute to an increase in AOV or LIOs, which in turn positively impact your bottom line.
2 Less Common Goals Successful B2B eCommerce Companies Set:
- Decrease Incoming Customer Service Phone Calls and Emails: One of the major benefits of B2B eCommerce and allowing your buyers to place orders online is it eliminates the need for sales and customer service reps to manually take orders for customers. Companies who relied heavily on large customer service teams or call centers prior to implementing B2B eCommerce often experience decreases in inbound calls about placing orders, checking on orders, or changing orders. This, in turn, allows these resources to be repurposed to more value-adding roles within customer service or sales that help retain customers, improve customer satisfaction, or increase sales.
- Grow Contact Lists and Improve Communication Efforts: One surprising result that comes from moving order online is improvement in the quality of data you have on your buyers. Existing customers are required to provide you with accurate email addresses for order confirmation and tracking information. Their address is needed in order for the products they order to be delivered. You also have new data on the types of things your buyers are searching for, spending time learning about, and ultimately purchasing. This newfound data can be used to drive more successful marketing and communication efforts that allow you to continue to see success.
Depending on your business’ objectives, there is a myriad of metrics to measure and analyze in regards to the expected results from B2B eCommerce. The above are just a few of them. Make sure to work closely with key stakeholders across your entire organization to understand those business objectives. Then align your eCommerce goals to those objectives.