Choosing a B2B Ecommerce Platform: Weighing the Risks | Practical Ecommerce

When considering a B2B ecommerce platform, it is important to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the software solution you select. There are, in my experience, three types of software for B2B companies to choose from.

First, some software solutions are primarily open-source content management systems without dedicated support teams. Examples are WordPress, Umbraco, and Drupal.

Second, other platforms are built primarily as ecommerce solutions, such as Shopify, AspDotNetStorefront, and Magento. They enable users to easily add and edit products, create categories, and have a checkout process for purchasing products.

There are many software solutions that are either strong CMS platforms or strong ecommerce platforms. But it is rare to find software packages that are strong at both.

While many CMS platforms have bolt-on ecommerce solutions, and many ecommerce platforms have some content management functionality, most are strong in one area and weak in the other.

These options can work okay for many B2C — business to consumer — shops. However, B2B companies typically have both complex content needs (spec sheets, reference documentation, videos) and specific ecommerce requirements (unique customer pricing, custom shipping rules).

The third option is software platforms that are strong in both content and commerce. These are more expensive than alternative solutions and there aren’t many of them. Examples include Acquia, Episerver, and Sitecore. (My company, I should add, is a reseller of Episerver and AspDotNetStorefront.)

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Source: Choosing a B2B Ecommerce Platform: Weighing the Risks | Practical Ecommerce

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