It's time for B2B vendors to change the way they attract, interact with and sell to customers.
That's a sentiment shared by a number of industry professionals and analysts, who have seen a massive change in the way procurement specialists prefer to deal with vendors. B2B sales and marketing are increasingly Web-based, mainly due to attitude adjustments from the companies buying products and services.
Earlier this week, an article in the online publication Manufacturing.net examined the need for organizations in the B2B sphere to move more of their operations - particularly those pertaining to customer interactions - online. Bob Barr, the article's author, calls this a digital strategy and says vendors that don't keep up with trends such as eCommerce will be left behind.
"While B2B organizations were aligned by product or channel in the past, they're now run by the customer, who is now at the center of delivery and driving sales," Barr wrote. "The question for manufacturers is now how to leverage sales and online platforms in response to what they do in the business. In order to drive success, organizational change management in the effort to spur evolution of the traditional sales channel and product-focused systems must take place."
Essentially, vendors selling to other businesses have to ditch their traditional strategies in favor of online operations. This includes all aspects of the sale, meaning that payment processing must be considered an online practice too. Obtaining a payment gateway that processes B2B payments is required, because standard gateways won't cut it. Businesses need a solution that can process Level 3 data with line item detail, as this will ensure that they pay the lowest possible interchange rate.