There was once a time when eCommerce fulfillment was almost 100% retail and etail businesses. Slowly but steadily, business to business, also known as B2B enterprises are jumping into the market and are becoming a larger part of the fulfillment world.
Fulfillment Clients are becoming more and more experience-oriented. When it comes to B2C, short for business to consumer and B2B fulfillment clients, it is very important to be aware of the differentiating factors that have an influence on their experience.
The main difference between B2B and B2C is the target audience and the number of items being sold. Typically B2C targets their audience through any outlet that is direct to the consumer, such as online or a magazine where it is easily accessible to order from. Also, the product being bought is on a small scale of 1-2 items. Where as B2B, the items sold are at a much larger scale such as cartons or cases full and there is no consumer involved, the business is the consumer. The business consumers are usually distributors, retailers or other types of businesses that outsource products. Depending on the merchandise, if it’s a consumer product the business has to determine the best method to reach their audience.
Expectedly, the client who sells direct to the consumer and the client who sells to other businesses, each demand a high level of service, specific technological and reporting needs. But, it is the fulfillment partner that can create the exceptional customer experience (either consumer, or business) that gains the competitive advantage.
Over the years, consumers have evolved from a product-led to a consumption-driven economy. In today’s competitive environment we must create an all around great client experience. Although much discussed, the concept is often misunderstood. Information has been gathered by different businesses, and the following information has been derived:
1. Helpfulness in resolving their problem or challenge
2. Value for the client’s time
3. Customer recognition – the client’s customer
4. Promised fulfillment
5. Personalization – are you a part of your client’s team?
The factors that have a fundamental impact on the business to business client are:
1. The extent of personal contact
3. Implicit understanding of their needs
4. Pro-activity in eliciting customer’s objectives
5. Pro-activity in follow up
6. Promised fulfillment
Note that only Promised Fulfillment makes it to both lists. Whether business-to-business or direct to consumer, achieving a great client experience is the cornerstone of client satisfaction.