B2B e-commerce: half of Dutch businesses order products online
Ede, October 29, 2020 – B2b e-commerce is on the rise; the percentage of the employed labor force that placed or approved a business online order in the past twelve months grew by nine percentage points compared to last year to 48%. Office supplies and computers remain popular categories, but larger and specialist products are also often purchased online. This is apparent from the B2B E-commerce Market Monitor 2020, published today, a large-scale study into the behavior and preferences of business online orderers that Multiscope conducted on behalf of Thuiswinkel.org, PostNL, De Nieuwe Zaak and Currence among 3,899 Dutch employees.
“Just like among consumers, we now see that the number of business online buyers has risen sharply in the past year,” says Wijnand Jongen, director of Thuiswinkel.org. “Although the impact of the corona crisis has not been explicitly investigated, there is a good chance that it has had an influence, also because the research shows that the online share of orders has increased in many product categories.”
The role of digital is growing within the B2B sector
Within most B2B branches we see that the share of online is increasing. The largest growth is seen in the construction industry, where 60% of buyers placed at least one online order in the past twelve months (compared to 44% in 2019). This puts construction ahead of business services as the industry with the highest percentage of online buyers. Other sectors with strong growth are the hospitality industry and trade.
Just like last year, online business buyers mainly order office supplies and computers online. It is striking that again this year the large and more specialized goods are often ordered online. Think of raw materials and semi-finished products, which are ordered online by almost half of all buyers. But also to machines and installations, which were ordered exclusively online by almost a third, compared to a quarter last year. The role of digital in the chain is increasing.
Business buying experience better than expected
The picture is often that in b2b the customer experience lagging behind the B2C sector. Still, for more than 70% of business buyers, the buying experience is the same as that of consumers and almost a quarter have a better business experience. Convenience is increasingly playing a major role in online ordering, both through a personal offer, through the method of payment and the way in which the order is delivered.
Invoice and iDEAL most popular payment methods
When asked about their preference for payment method for a business online order, 38% of the respondents indicated payment by invoice and 36% paid via iDEAL. This is followed at a great distance by the credit card (9%), AfterPay (5%) and PayPal (4%).
There is, however, a difference in the preferences of business buyers and the method that is most often used. 40% of the business buyers indicates that the most commonly used method is not their preference. For example, 26% actually pays per invoice and 50% with iDEAL. The main reason for these differences can be found in the seller's offer and the policies in place within the buyer's company. Despite these differences between the preferred and the actually used methods, the business online buyers are generally satisfied with the range of payment options; 67% is satisfied to very satisfied.
61% compares webshops on logistics aspects
Logistics plays a decisive role in the growth of B2B e-commerce. 61% of the business online orderers compares providers on logistics aspects such as delivery speed, the location where delivery can be made and shipping costs. The most important delivery aspects are low delivery costs and being able to track the product; almost a third of the business online orderers indicate that they find this important. Return options are also important; 77% makes the choice of the webshop depend on the return conditions. In addition, 20% will cancel the order if there is no possibility to return. Remarkable, since the B2B sector does not have a right of return like the B2C sector.
While sustainability is not one of the top five aspects of delivery for everyone, more than a third (37%) of all business online buyers consider sustainable delivery to be important to a greater or lesser extent. For 34% this may come at the expense of the delivery time and 18% would be willing to pay a little more for this. Light users are more often willing (38%) to wait longer for the delivery if it is delivered sustainably than heavy users (20%).
Submitted press releases are not the responsibility of the editors