You know that the future of e-commerce is already here, but you are torn between the e-commerce platform to choose. Your first and the most challenging part is choosing the right e-commerce platform for your business. If you choose the right platform, it will be a good investment worth your time and money, but if you make the wrong choice, it can end up with a lot of consequences. It’s better to use your time well when comparing platforms, requirements and understand how your company is going to grow if you decide to choose a specific e-commerce platform.
But first, there are things which you should do before taking that step.
Understand your drivers
Due to the Amazon effect, most businesses are purchasing services and products online. They are now expecting to get consumer level experience from the other companies. Companies are now getting customer and market pressure for them to invest in e-commerce platforms because:
- They want to participate in various marketplaces such as Amazon and Alibaba
- Be in a position to place orders directly from their mobile phones
- Empower their sales team to become strategic and decreasing manual work
These are some of the broad drivers of B2B e-commerce. Your company might be interested in something different but if you don’t understand well the needs of your company you might make the wrong choice.
Also, 27% of all B2B transactions are expected to shift online by the year 2020. You need to have moved your business online by then if you want to create efficiencies and meet customer expectations.
Conduct a realistic self-assessment
If your company is not ready to deal with e-commerce, it won’t matter if you know why you need the solution. You won’t possess the support and resources which are required to get the job completed.
Answer the following questions
- Have you evaluated your current resources?
- Have you identified your system requirements?
- Do you have a comprehensive and objective platform selection process? Do you understand the strategy of your company and the competitive differentiators?
If you answered no to a large percentage of these questions, then you are not ready to have an e-commerce platform. But if your answer was yes to most of the questions, then you are ready to choose a B2B platform.
You should not just choose a B2B e-commerce platform just for the sake of it. You should follow the above three steps and answer the question to determine whether you are ready to select an e-commerce platform for your company.