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To take a business to the next level, companies should have good promotion and high visibility among fellow investors, suppliers, and potential partners. Businesses are constantly looking for ways to improve their business performance and spread the word among peers.
B2B portals can help with the matter. Investing in B2B web portal development, entrepreneurs get authentic, reliable, and trustworthy hubs for seamless collaboration with their business partners and vendors.
While the trend of building B2B portals has been around for a long time, technological advancements continue expanding and adding new capabilities to portals’ functionality. How can an effective B2B portal boost your business performance?
Although B2B portals may differ in their capabilities and requirements, they have one thing in common. A B2B portal is a self-contained platform focused on communication and interaction between stakeholders, where the primary purpose is to maintain or develop new business relationships.
B2B portals come in many types:
Companies that exchange information with their business partners to conduct operations and are interested in keeping data up-to-date appreciate B2B portal convenience and use it as a central communication channel.
B2B portals serve as data clearinghouses needed to make informed business decisions. The portal consolidates all the relevant data you can use to improve relationships with customers and partners. You see detailed records of each partner or vendor, past orders, and transactions. It opens up new opportunities for closing deals, making sales, investing, promoting business, and increasing loyalty.
Benefits of B2B portals
The B2B market is constantly growing. For example, the B2B e-commerce market size was $14.9tn in 2020, five times exceeding the B2C market. What makes B2B portals so popular?
Convenient and fast customer service
The B2B portal enables managing relationships with customers, distributors, and partners from one place. The B2B customer portal makes it possible to independently track placed orders, manage invoices, and make payments without additional help from support or sales specialists.
A B2B portal can simplify payment acceptance by integrating it with payment processors such as Stripe and PayPal. These payment processors are safe as they have strong encryption using SSL certificate, which encrypts the information between the server and the browser. By doing so, you provide your customers with additional secure ways to pay for orders online, as well as refer to their past orders and invoices without the help of an accounting department.
Personalised shopping experience
With a B2B portal, you can offer your customers a personalised shopping experience. For example, display pricing information depending on whether the customer is a distributor, retailer, or end user. Customers can view price information in their preferred currency and save items to their wish list. This way you can tailor the purchasing process to their needs.
Integrating a B2B portal with an order management system will provide complete order information, help reduce the turnaround time, manage content and catalogs, and eliminate the need to manually type in orders. A B2B portal can also send automatic updates to your customers on the status of their orders and save your customer service from having to send them separate emails. The portal can build an online community to help customers make the right purchasing decisions and expand their product knowledge.
The B2B portal allows you to manage all accounts from any device, schedule repeat orders and new purchases, and take credit purchases for specific groups of customers. This way you can directly promote offers to customers based on the account they choose.
Improved inventory management
Having real-time, up-to-date inventory information on your B2B portal will improve efficiency and reduce costs throughout your supply chain. Access to comprehensive product data can also help to respond quickly to market changes and plan more effectively for the future.
Live customer support
Since customer satisfaction is a priority for any business, companies must have fast customer support service. With a chatbot integrated into the portal, you can reduce customer wait times and decrease customer service workload. Chatbots can instantly provide support to users and answer their questions 24/7 without the need for human contact.
Business growth with B2B portals
B2B portals help to build trust and create a first-class user experience that meets user expectations. How else can B2B portals advance your business growth?
One of the most important factors for business growth in the marketplace is the level of customer response when receiving proposals. It's necessary to interact and maintain a close relationship with them: make suggestions, dispel any doubts, and respond promptly to any questions or inquiries received.
Clearly articulate the offering
A well-described product or service is easy to find and increases the chances of conversion. Putting an offer on a B2B portal, try to give as many details about the product as possible, such as specifications, images, or a video overview, to make it easier for the customer to find it. When it comes to the virtual environment, the more detailed the information, the easier it will be to choose your company as a service provider or business partner.
Set competitive prices
Below-market prices can create uncertainty or raise suspicion, as well as prices significantly above the market offering. Analyse and research the market in detail to offer your product at a reasonable price. Ensure you provide the best services and products at a competitive price to attract new customers and partners and retain the existing ones.
Personalised service is a key differentiator that helps retain customers and partners and increase loyalty. A B2B portal enables you to deliver tailored services to every partner within the agreed time frame. It simplifies after-sales service by giving you instant access to the history of interactions with every client.
The bottom line
Many businesses from different industries now have B2B web portals. A well-implemented B2B portal is an effective tool for promoting your products and services and communicating with your customers and partners. It may take significant investments but will benefit the business in the long run, taking it to the next level.
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