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B2B is short for “business to business” so it means one business selling to another business (rather than a consumer).

e-commerce is when the order is placed on a website rather than via the phone, email, or in person.

Thus, B2B e-commerce is when a business is selling to another business via a website.

It’s the fastest growing type of e-commerce, Forrester estimates that B2B e-commerce will top $1.1T and account for 12.1% of all B2B sales by 2020.

In fact 46% of manufacturers predict e-commerce will be their primary sales channel by 2020. So there’s plenty of opportunity.

Many wholesalers and manufacturers are adding a B2B e-commerce sales channel to their business because of this opportunity, and this opportunity is being driven by the customers.

In fact in 2014 Forrester surveyed 100 US firms that had implemented B2B e-commerce over the previous 7 years and found that 31% of the revenue those firms had got via e-commerce was new business.

B2B e-commerce is increasingly a sales channel your customers expect, and it also provides an opportunity to find new customers.

By the end of this module you will:

  • Understand what is meant by B2B e-commerce
  • Be able to evaluate if it is an opportunity for your business