Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) companies are undergoing a dramatic digital transformation within their sales and distribution practices. Business buyers and channel partners alike seek the same omnichannel experience that consumers have come to expect, allowing them to research products, transact, and access customer support through a combination of digital channels and their dedicated sales representatives.
The B2B market is twice the size of the B2C market overall, and yet many consumer products companies still rely on legacy systems for their commerce strategy with channel partners. The opportunity to digitally reinvent the buyer experience has never been more attainable or more important.
Here are three ways your organization can digitally transform its channel partner experiences to drive business growth:
Despite the demand for digitally-enabled experiences, only one-third of B2B purchases are currently made online. Retailers, distributors, and channel partners do not have the time nor the desire to complete paperwork, wait on hold, or chase down their dedicated sales reps to complete orders. And in these situations, their ability to explore new products and product lines, take advantage of promotions, bundling, or subscription opportunities, and have complete transparency into their account is limited. By offering a cloud-based B2B eCommerce platform, the company can speed up purchasing processes, increase cross-sell and upsell opportunities, and keep sales reps focused on driving strategic, higher-value business.
Similar to how consumers often research products before making a purchase, B2B buyers need access to knowledge while considering an order. In fact, 68% of B2B buyers prefer to conduct research online instead of asking a sales rep. While this does not replace the need for an assigned sales representative, it is proof positive that the buying process has evolved from a linear path to a more complex omnichannel experience unique to each channel partner. Customers are now more empowered to employ self-service methods for obtaining information, making purchases digitally on their own time, and troubleshooting issues.
65% of B2B consumers say that they would change to a competitor if a vendor failed to treat their organization as unique. There are now more opportunities than ever to harness customer data to automate meaningful engagement, including personalized product recommendations, promotions, and bundling. Digital marketing isn’t just for consumers—there are valuable opportunities to maximize every channel partner relationship through more intelligent marketing strategies. By combining consumer-quality marketing techniques with a B2B commerce platform, channel partners are able to engage with your brand in ways that were not possible before.
While B2B transactions can be more complex than those of B2C, the time has come for both types of experiences to be unified and personalized. By employing these strategies within your customer and partner ecosystem, your company gains a deeper understanding of its customers (and consumers!) with consolidated data insights that you can leverage as a competitive advantage.
Salesforce provides industry-leading technology solutions to optimize channel partner experiences, including B2B Commerce Cloud, Marketing Cloud, and Service Cloud. Learn more about how Bluewolf and Salesforce are reinventing B2B customer experiences for consumer products companies.
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Bluewolf, an IBM Company, is a global consulting agency and proven Salesforce strategic partner that builds digital solutions designed to create results. Now.