Over 65% of B2B Businesses Are Unsatisfied With Their eCommerce Technology According to New Research From commercetools and Master B2B
Press Release

Over 65% of B2B Businesses Are Unsatisfied With Their eCommerce Technology According to New Research From commercetools and Master B2B

commercetools speaker image Sara Krypel
Sara Krypel
PR & Communications Manager, commercetools

  • Composable commerce is on the rise in the B2B economy as businesses increasingly identify gaps and inflexibility in their omnichannel experience

  • Over 80% of B2B buyers prefer to order or pay through digital commerce, yet roughly 30% of B2B sellers are not confident in their eCommerce platform’s ability to deliver 

  • The report provides guidance to businesses on how to advance in order to achieve success in B2B eCommerce, as over two-thirds (69%) of buyers said they would rather gather information online by themselves than interact with a sales representative

Over 65% of B2B Businesses Are Unsatisfied With Their eCommerce Technology According to New Research From commercetools and Master B2B

MUNICH, GERMANY, August 1, 2023  – commercetools, the leading provider of composable commerce, and Master B2B today published Establishing Your Baseline: Assessing B2B Digital Maturity. This report provides a model enabling businesses to assess digital maturity and also examines the state of the over $7 trillion business-to-business (B2B) digital commerce market. The report, surveying both B2B buyers and sellers globally, found that a striking 60% of B2B businesses will be in the market for a new eCommerce platform within the next two years. 

Given the seismic shifts in the global business economy that forced digital transformation acceleration, the research shows that B2B sellers who understand their digital maturity and the economic cost of not delivering are taking action. Only one-third surveyed believed their current digital commerce tech stack is capable of providing the modern digital experience B2B buyers base decisions on today.

Ultimately, B2B buyers and sellers have the same demands and expectations as B2C buyers and sellers. Everyone needs the same level of flexibility and scalability in order to meet their customers where they are, and where they want to be. Composable commerce is the enabling factor for B2B businesses — no matter their size, segment, or level of maturity. True composability enables these experiences because of the unparalleled technical agility it grants.
Dirk Hoerig

Co-Founder and CEO, commercetools

Seamless Experiences Matter

B2B buyers are flocking towards the most efficient experiences which today often include digital components. Over 80% of B2B buyers prefer to order or pay through digital commerce specifically because of the ease and convenience that those touchpoints provide. These capabilities significantly influence decision-making throughout the buyer’s journey. They’re demanding that negotiated prices, live customer chat, and the ability to check their order status in real time all be available online. 

While convenient checkout is key, advanced product discoverability is also critical to the increasingly digitally-native buyer. Over two-thirds (69%) of buyers said that they found gathering information online on their own to be superior to interacting with a sales representative during the discovery process, while over half (51%) said they need to research their purchases online before they’re able to make a purchase offline. This indicates the need for B2B companies to invest in creating consistency in their omnichannel experience by ensuring pricing and inventory are aligned online and offline. They also need to monetize services and domain expertise better so that customers will not be tempted to research with one organization, and then buy someplace else that provides a better experience. Businesses must ensure they’re meeting customers where they are, making sure any channel with product information must have the ability to convert buyer interest into a transaction. 

B2B customers have grown accustomed to the immediacy that is now associated with modern shopping experiences, however, they’re not experiencing them in the B2B commerce economy. This technical immaturity is directly correlated to negative customer service experiences, which cause customer loyalty to decline, and decrease the likelihood of converting customers.

Data is a Strategic Asset

63% of respondents said that data cleanliness was the biggest impediment to their B2B eCommerce growth this past year, only to be outranked by budget constraints. Maturity in B2B eCommerce will only occur after businesses make a significant and ongoing investment into data cleanliness, as they need the insights to propel themselves forward, stay ahead of the competition, and grow the bottom line. Given this emphasis on data as a stepping stone to digital maturity, 77% of companies surveyed said that they’ll be investing in data cleanup this year. 

Evolve or Die

B2B organizations have become far more nimble, agile and responsive to B2B customers, however, they still lack the digital maturation to be successful in 2023 and beyond. While reactive strides were made in 2020, they’re largely still under-investing in certain roles. In fact, 62% of B2B sellers said that the lack of qualified eCommerce team members was a significant barrier to their growth. The same goes for leadership, who are predominately still not sufficiently digitally native. 

I believe that digital success comes from the top down. You cannot simply transform a single piece of your business to be digital, you have to transform every piece, including your leadership. If you want to be a successful digital organization, everyone at your company needs to be a “tech person,” and everyone needs to be up for the digital transformation challenge.
Kelly Goetsch

Chief Strategy Officer, commercetools

With a top-down emphasis on digital transformation, B2B organizations must also look to evolve their metrics for success. The report found that many companies are too fixated on the hard metrics for B2B eCommerce, and aren’t putting enough emphasis on capturing the business-critical soft metrics, such as customer satisfaction and retention. 

Size and digital maturity separate B2B companies from one another — distributors from wholesalers, manufacturers from manufacturers, and distributors from manufacturers. The most digitally mature companies are driven by the priorities of their customers, not by internal needs, and are constantly looking for ways to take advantage of new technologies and ecosystems to further evolve their businesses. 

The digital maturity assessment established in the report from commercetools and Master B2B serves to help B2B companies determine where they are in each dimension today and develop a roadmap for accelerating their digital maturity as quickly and effectively as possible. “We’ve heard repeatedly from B2B eCommerce practitioners that they'd like a way to quickly and authoritatively benchmark the progress they've made in their companies," said Andy Hoar, Co-Founder of Master B2B. 

"And we're certain that this tool will be incredibly useful to every B2B eCommerce practitioner thinking practically about where to put their investment dollars in the coming years," added Brian Beck, Co-Founder of Master B2B.

commercetools’ leading B2B commerce platform, commercetools Composable Commerce for B2B, enables businesses to future-proof themselves from unexpected market forces, increase revenue-generating opportunities, maximize operational efficiency, focus on customer-experience-driven growth at scale, and leverage a best-in-class partner ecosystem. Customers like Normet, Dawn Foods, Just Eat Takeaway and Cimpress have chosen commercetools to transform their digital commerce experiences and unlock innovation.

To learn more about commercetools and download the full report, please visit commercetools’ resources page

About commercetools

commercetools founded the headless commerce concept, and is the industry-leading composable commerce platform enabling brands to adapt and lead evolutions in digital commerce. commercetools provides its customers with the agility and tools needed to innovate and iterate on the fly, merge on and off-line channels, take advantage of new markets, drive new and higher revenue-generating opportunities, and future-proof their eCommerce business –– without incurring technical and operational risks.

Today, commercetools is trusted by some of the world's most iconic brands including Audi, Danone, Eurorail, NBCUniversal, Sephora and Volkswagen Group, and many more. To learn more, visit commercetools.com.

commercetools speaker image Sara Krypel
Sara Krypel
PR & Communications Manager, commercetools

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