Successful customer engagement relies heavily on personalization. B2B sellers can set themselves up for success by focusing on better engaging their buyers and providing an overall better experience through the use of personalized content. Here are five simple things you can do to achieve a more personalized B2B shopping experience for your customers.
1. Group your customers. Take advantage of some important personalizations including targeted content, easy access to open orders, shop by previous orders, and a personalized navigation. Grouping customers also allows you to provide customer-specific catalogs and contracted pricing. Types of customer grouping can include geographically, by industry, by company size, or by needs.
2. Automate notifications. Most of today’s eCommerce platforms and CRMs include the ability to automate emails so you can deliver information to your customers right when they need it. Email is traditionally viewed as a way to introduce your company to new customers, share product recommendations and update a customer with order information. However, expanded automated notifications can be a real revenue booster for B2B sellers. In addition to the traditional uses of automated notifications, consider the following:
- Send notifications before customers’ supplies may need replenished
- Send information regarding a product upgrade or enhancement
- Run sales promotions that are specific to a customer group
- Send notifications about maintenance kits, a time-based notification for potentially worn out parts, or suggested maintenance routines.
3. Leverage mobile technologies. Keep in mind that today’s buying process happens at all times of the day and/or night while the buyer is on the shop ﬂoor, at a client site, commuting, etc. Nearly 1 out of every 5 B2B purchases are made from a mobile device, according to a study conducted by Google in partnership with Millward Brown Digital, so ensure your personalized B2B shopping content is available on all devices and is optimized for each screen size.
4. Enhanced product content. Robust product content, product specifications, product manuals and schematics are vital to the success of your B2B site and are often necessary to get past the pre-qualifying step for some buyers. Go beyond flat images and provide high resolution imagery for your dealer or distributor network. Expand your content offerings to include downloadable or printable specification sheets, reviews, user manuals, installation guidelines or schematics as well as product and information videos.
5. Service Portal. Don’t stop at giving your customers access to personalization. Extend personalization to your call center and support staff, as well. A service portal allows your support staff to co-shop with or shop on behalf of customers, and will empower your staff to further enhance the customer experience with real time access to customer accounts and order history.
Many small and mid-market B2B companies have the mindset that eCommerce personalization is for the B2C retailer, but as you can see, a more personalized B2B shopping experience doesn’t need to be based on complex algorithms built from large data sets. A personalized experience for your B2B customers can be engineered without investing a large amount of time or monetary resources.