January 10, 2019
During the past decade, the investments made in technological advances in the area of B2C ecommerce have far outweighed the efforts directed toward B2B. Many B2B customers have come to expect the same online buying experience that they have grown accustomed to from B2C ecommerce. While B2B is still trailing behind its B2C ecommerce cousin, the functionality found today on most B2B sites is quite impressive. An effective on site search tool that delivers personalized and relevant search results has always been a critical component of successful B2B online selling. 2019 will bring additional innovations to the forefront.
Here’s what to look for from the world of on site search from B2B ecommerce in the new year.
More Reliance on Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning
Machine learning is a technology that springs from artificial intelligence. Search platforms such as Hawksearch can evaluate large volumes of data with regard to the search and shopping behaviors of B2B online visitors. From this analysis, conclusive predictions about what shoppers want to see in their search results can be made, which can significantly increase conversion rates. Machine learning is a great tool for B2B ecommerce sellers, as it further improves the quality of search result personalization and relevance.
Harmony with Omnichannel Commerce
Historically, B2B commerce was very traditional in that it relied heavily on buyers interacting with company sales representatives by phone or email. In addition, lengthy paper trails were often produced that tracked purchases, shipments and other important information. While B2B ecommerce has proven to be a very successful new sales channel, the traditional methods of doing business will continue into the foreseeable future.
In order for this omnichannel industry to continue to thrive, all sales channels will have to harmonize together. With the help of a powerful search tool that produces highly accurate and relevant search results, customers and sales reps can collaborate together on the company’s website. Embracing new technology, while still maintaining some traditional business methods is an effective way to generate new revenue and also give buyers a satisfactory experience.
Video As Indexible Content
Presenting information via video has become very common on B2B ecommerce sites, especially for companies that sell the type of products that are designed to meet certain specifications. Instead of making customers read a lot of written content on a given topic, videos do a great job of communicating information and also saving time. Hawksearch can index a video’s pertinent keywords and descriptions, resulting in the video’s link being included in search results. These presentations can go a long way in influencing conversions.
B2B Ecommerce With A B2C Feel
Many ecommerce customers today have an almost unconscious expectation that their B2B experiences will match what they have encountered in the B2C world. A powerful search tool plays a huge role in delivering satisfactory B2B ecommerce experiences by providing personalized and highly relevant search results. Many B2B websites have a ways to go when it comes to a seamless customer experience, but great gains have been made in recent years. An effective search platform, coupled with additional advancements in functionality will be the main drivers that move B2B ecommerce sites forward in 2019.
Voice Assisted Search For B2B
2019 and beyond will see an increasing interest in voice assisted search. Such products as Alexa, Echo and others have become very popular ways to interact with the web. The initial phase of voice assisted search will most likely be in the B2C space, but online B2B sellers should be aware of its eventual use in their industry as well. Search tools in coming years will be able to return relevant search results not through inquiries from a keyboard, but rather via the human voice.
2019 will be another exciting year for B2B ecommerce as the industry continues to evolve and grow. Like its B2C counterpart, B2B will want to focus on providing great experiences for shoppers and customers. Search tools such as Hawksearch will continue to greatly influence the quality of satisfactory ecommerce transactions by personalizing search results for every customer.