B2B sellers have not traditionally paid much attention to streamlining their eCommerce experiences because most corporate buyers seemed comfortable with traditional — albeit lengthier — processes in which they placed orders, waited for invoices in the mail, and then wrote and mailed back paper checks or logged onto digital payment portals to complete transactions.
These methods no longer satisfy many business clients today, however, and B2B transactions are increasingly occurring over digital platforms. In fact, 57% of business buyers are making more purchases on eCommerce sites, according to the Next-Gen Digital Payments Report, a PYMNTS and Transcard collaboration.
A shift toward digital commerce in the B2B space has been on the horizon for a long time, and the pandemic is accelerating such trends. This shift could prove lucrative for vendors that are well-positioned to cater to digital purchasing demands.
Catering to the Rising Demand
eCommerce purchasing experiences that are too complicated or time-consuming run the risk of frustrating procurement professionals and leading them to abandon their shopping journeys. B2B vendors seeking to cater to the rising demand for digital purchasing options may therefore wish to examine the tools and solutions that are removing frictions from consumers’ online shopping experiences and applying them to their own B2B platforms.
For example, consumers are used to browsing eCommerce marketplaces and tapping embedded payment options at checkout for seamless purchasing experiences, and B2B sellers could be wise to take a page from the C2B payments playbook by bringing similar payment features to their B2B eCommerce platforms.
Consumers have shown considerable interest in using click-to-purchase buy buttons to quickly complete eCommerce transactions. PYMNTS research found that buy buttons can significantly reduce checkout times, with consumers spending an average of 99 seconds on checkout when leveraging the feature compared to 176 seconds when not using it.
Enabling Straightforward, Streamlined Transactions
Many eTailers appear to believe that this kind of embedded payment option can encourage sales and reduce checkout frictions, and additional buy button capabilities have recently emerged that could provide greater streamlining and security globally. Major card brands introduced Secure Remote Commerce (SRC) in 2019, a capability that allows shoppers to click a “universal” buy button to pay online or in-app using the preferred cards they hold with any of the participating brands. This function spares shoppers from having to enter card details each time they make a purchase, making payments more convenient and secure while helping merchants reduce cart abandonment risks.
Corporate clients making purchases from B2B vendors value straightforward, streamlined transaction experiences that can keep them from facing weeks-long, multi-step purchasing processes. Traditional procurement flows in which corporate buyers place orders with suppliers, wait for invoices in the mail and use paper checks or online payment portals to finish their transactions can be burdensome and overly complex — especially as more companies explore digital purchasing options during the pandemic and begin to appreciate the conveniences they offer.
Clients may ultimately favor suppliers that offer embedded payments options that allow them to pay via suppliers’ websites or B2B marketplaces and can deliver more satisfying experiences.