With the unlimited options available online, customers are quick to abandon their carts when even a single aspect of the purchasing experience is less than satisfactory. In fact, nearly half of all B2B buyers have not completed a purchase online because their preferred payment method wasn’t available.
Since the majority of customer expectations are inspired by B2C shopping experiences, B2B retailers should consider making it a priority to innovate and keep up with buyer demands.
In 2020, sellers who adopt strategies to meet these evolving customer expectations and solve for the significant pain points driving qualified buyers away will pull away from their competition.
Satisfied, and therefore loyal, customers boost bottom lines. Luckily, there are several smart strategies to employ in the new year that can drive loyalty and increase share of wallet with current buyers, as well as bring in more qualified customers:
Providing a seamless buying flow, from onboarding through repeat purchase, reduces cart abandonment and creates a more user-friendly ecommerce experience.
To do so, offer buyers an efficient website experience and an updated portal for purchasing. Supplement this with reliable, 24/7 customer service comparable to what many B2C brands already offer.
The entire experience, from searching for items to completing a purchase, should be quick, easy and simple.
Just under 75% of B2B buyers would bounce to a competitor’s site if their vendor’s ecommerce store failed to meet their expectations. So in 2020, make it a priority to speed up the process with machine learning that anticipates customer needs.
Loyalty happens when it’s easy for buyers to do business with you. Update the available payment options by offering flexible methods like invoicing at checkout with 30-, 60- or 90-day terms. Providing more options leads to a higher order volume and inspires repeat purchases, i.e. buyer loyalty.
Offering payment options that boost the customer experience also means moving beyond a reliance on credit cards. Credit cards introduce accounting headaches, surcharges, insufficient lines of credit and don’t allow for payment flexibility.
Make sure that payment options are available across all channels to satisfy today’s buyers, as 98% want to have the same purchasing experience across all channels, from online to in-store and over the phone.
Maintain consistency with flexible capabilities like purchase controls, dynamic pricing and smart integrations visible at every touchpoint.
The omnichannel experience must also be fluid. The payments industry evolves quickly so be ready to adjust strategies and add the newest, in-demand payment options according to the latest buyer expectations.
Give thought to the processes and systems that support buyers’ purchasing experiences. Look for solutions that allow for quicker onboarding and offer global support to help meet more customers across all channels.
Focus on finding solutions and partners that integrate with ERP, POS, CRM and ecommerce systems in order to provide visibility and harness insight into purchasing behavior — which is critical to meeting expectations and improving the buyer experience.
By streamlining processes from onboarding through repeat purchases, your organization will outpace competitors as a preferred partner.
In 2020, anticipating buyers’ needs and exceeding expectations should be at the core of your strategy.
With the ideal mixture of diverse payment options and omnichannel processes to support them, sellers can expect to bolster their bottom line and inspire loyalty in the years to come.
Brandon Spear is the president of MSTS, a global B2B payments and credit solutions provider. Brandon leads MSTS with expertise in managing large, diverse global teams. His strength is discerning and focusing on the most important challenges facing an organization at a particular point in time and unifying all stakeholders behind accomplishing a set of specific goals. Brandon has a unique ability to connect across all levels of an organization and motivate staff with diverse skill sets, while ensuring common alignment and great results.
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