Factors for Choosing the Right B2B e-commerce Platform

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We are in such an era in human existence that there are country borders but no barriers to trade. The world is a global village for sellers. You can get what you desire without settling for anything with just a few clicks.

It goes without saying that as the e-commerce sector grew, so did competition for customers. As a result, there are thousands of B2B eCommerce options accessible to us today, and each of them claims to be the greatest in its particular way.

What is B2B e-commerce?

Most of the e-commerce platforms you would have heard of would be for your groceries, dog food, shopping, and essentials. All of this falls under the B2C e-commerce platform. Many of us have only encountered these retail shops, but e-commerce platforms are open to consumer-facing websites. B2B e-commerce is business between companies, where the buyer is not the end consumer. B2B e-commerce software solutions are a powerful tool for doing business.

B2B e-commerce is just like B2C e-commerce but has more complexities, requiring an advanced platform to run the business. However, with the help of the internet, it has the potential to become highly automated. For example, a sourcing manager might submit a request online and receive this information instantly, regardless of the time of day, instead of calling to request a price.

Factors to consider when picking an e-commerce platform

With the increased use of the internet, everyone wants to go global. There are no restrictions to whom you can sell and where. There are hundreds of e-commerce platforms available with highly advanced features. We have listed some essential points for you to consider before you invest in any e-commerce platform.

 Design Flexibility

A B2B model could combine two or more individual businesses. For example, you could be a manufacturer supplying to wholesalers and retailers. This business model combines two different segments making it a unique company. Hence you want the design of your website to be as unique as your business. A good B2B website would allow you complete flexibility on the characteristics and layout of your website.

 Location of the server

A vendor can host his website either on-premise or cloud-based. Hosting it on-premise means the vendor would have the solution installed in his data center connected remotely using the internet connection, and the e-commerce platform would maintain the server. Cloud-based is hosted on a cloud by the service provider. On-premise hosting is more expensive but provides more control over the data. Cloud hosting is easier to set up and less costly, but you would also have less control over your data.

 Type of product

There are various products to be sold in the B2B segment. You could be supplying physical goods like books, equipment, and garments. Or digital products, eBooks, software, and online courses. You could also offer services like selling healthcare packages or software to large companies. The business models birthed by the internet, subscriptions, and memberships are also a part of B2B e-commerce. Lastly, the classic B2B function of wholesale business.

As you have noticed, there are various segments of B2B business, and you should select an e-commerce platform that would support your business in the best possible way.

 Pricing management

Unlike B2C pricing, B2B pricing is volatile. This makes B2B transactions more complex than B2C. A good platform would allow you to offer customized pricing depending on the customer, order volume, tiered pricing, order frequency, and location. Traditionally, these businesses had the functions of requesting a price quotation and, later, a negotiation. The platform should be able to support these traditional functionalities. Other essential features for price management are minimum order quantity and variable pricing.

Payment gateway

Everyone runs a business with the ultimate motive of earning money. Your platforms should support the various ways you can accept that money. As said in the previous point, the pricing structure of a B2B business is flexible and complex, and your payment options should also reflect that. Payment gateways should be easy to use and have high security as it is a data-sensitive function. Make sure you include offline payment choices like credit cards, NEFT, IMPS, RTGS, and other internet options alongside your various payment methods and installment payment plans. You would want a payment gateway that is easy to use, secure, and supports the payment mode you want.


Your website should have the ability to handle ten or even 100 visitors at the same time. The scalability is wider than the number of visitors alone but should also give the freedom to scale on your number of products or categories. You would need a B2B solution that can scale along with your business as it expands. If the scalability is limited, you would quickly outgrow the platform and have to start over. This would disrupt the progress you would have made on the previous forum. Sadly, this can lead to a cycle of constant platform switching.

 Content Ownership

For any business, its content is of utmost importance. The content is the source of the revenue, and you would not want to risk its integrity in any form. No matter where your website is hosted, you would like to have complete control over the content of the website. Choose an e-commerce platform that would share this same principle. Many platforms are easy to use but can take down your website without warning due to the slightest violation of their terms and conditions. This would result in a loss of money, time, and laborious work.

 User experience

What is more important than a good user experience? Firstly, if a potential buyer or client finds your website challenging, they’ll probably quit and shop with a rival instead. Secondly, while deciding how to rank sites, search engines take user experience into account. Finally, while setting up an e-commerce website, you aim to ensure that users get maximum benefits from visiting your website. Some factors to consider for a good user experience are site speed, easy-to-use search option, content organization, easy checkout, and mobile optimized website.

 Customer service, marketing, and shipping

Customer service is different from the user experience. Good customer service would increase your goodwill and, in turn, increase customer retention. In comparison, a good user experience would increase the number of visitors to your website. Marketing is the bridge between customer service and user experience. Marketing helps your products reach new customers and increase sales. The combination of these three would help your website and business to grow.

Once you start selling products through your website, you will need a good shipping strategy to fulfill the orders. Depending on their tier, region, or other considerations, you should offer your top clients various delivery options. Your chosen platform should make all your customer service and shipping strategies possible.

Ease of use and management

Time is money for both the web developer and the customer. You want a platform that asks for a manageable amount of time investment and is simple. The right e-commerce platform would be easy to use and manage. One of the biggest challenges in a B2B website is product information management. A highly functional platform would give you product listing and catalog management features for easier business management.


Launching an excellent B2B e-commerce website takes time and effort. This article provides a broad view of factors to consider while choosing the perfect B2B platform. However, we still advise you to go to a B2B e-commerce platform developer to get your platform designed as per your requirements. You can also take help from a list of the best website development agencies in India for developing your website.

About Carson Derrow

My name is Carson Derrow I'm an entrepreneur, professional blogger, and marketer from Arkansas. I've been writing for startups and small businesses since 2012. I share the latest business news, tools, resources, and marketing tips to help startups and small businesses to grow their business.