You’ve decided to launch your first B2B ecommerce site or are replatforming an older site to improve site performance and customer experience. With approval from the powers that be, you’re ready to start on your project!
Or are you?
Have you thought about your ecommerce initiative in terms of a comprehensive ecommerce strategy or is your plan of attack a list of tactical to-do items?
If you aren’t considering the impact of ecommerce on your business from a strategic perspective you’re likely to run into trouble later.
The Benefits of a B2B Ecommerce Strategy
The benefit of a well-thought out B2B ecommerce strategy is simple. It serves as a framework for your ecommerce efforts, guiding your choices and providing continuity. A successful B2B ecommerce strategy:
- Starts from the top down. Secure executive support before proceeding.
- Keeps your ecommerce goals in focus. With a clear strategy, you are less likely to be distracted by the newest technology development or changes to your competition’s site.
- Prevents “scope creep.” It’s easy to get caught up in adding “just one more little thing” to your site before it launches. This practice adds weeks, months, and many dollars to your project–and likely keeps you from focusing on the core functionality you need for your site.
- Allows you to approach your project in phases. Remember all those “wouldn’t it be cool if” ideas from the last bullet? Repeat after me: “We will add that to our plan for Phase II.” Rolling your project out in phases gives you an easy way to incorporate new and exciting technologies into your ecommerce site without derailing your current progress. It also allows you to budget for additional functionality, which is likely to have a price tag attached.
The start of every ecommerce initiative is exciting and opportunities abound to add cutting-edge functionality to your site. Taking time to assess your organization’s goals for ecommerce and how it fits into your corporate plan is essential BEFORE you start the project. Creating a strategic ecommerce plan for your B2B ecommerce site will ensure that you launch the best site possible in the shortest amount of time while staying in budget.
Wondering how to get started? Check out 8 Steps to Creating a Comprehensive Ecommerce Strategy.
To learn more about the importance of a strategic plan for B2B ecommerce, check out the 6-minute interview with Linda Taddonio on the same topic.