On many B2B ecommerce initiatives, the organization’s marketing department can be found leading the charge into ecommerce. This happens for a number of reasons, including:
- Marketing needs a new way to reach untapped customers and sees ecommerce as a way to do so.
- An ecommerce site is high profile and customer-facing, leaving marketing in charge of messaging and look and feel on the site.
- Today’s ecommerce sites are graphically driven and customer-specific and marketing is often the most qualified department to lead the organization is these areas.
Regardless of why a marketing department is in the driver’s seat on ecommerce, it’s essential to recognize that marketing has very specific needs when it comes to choosing an ecommerce platform that will directly effect the effectives of the ecommerce site.
To be succcessful in ecommerce, marketing needs:
- Flexibility in how the site looks and feels. It’s no secret that marketers have a clear idea of how your organization’s brand should be represented across sales materials, presentations, and on your website. Your ecommerce site will be no exception. This means that your marketing department needs flexibility in transferring that brand experience to your ecommerce site through customizable color schemes, font choices, layout, and page flow.
- To own the updating process. For marketers, there’s nothing worse than having to submit a request to the IT department to have copy changed on a site or to upload a new promotional banner. To ensure promotions are released on time and that copy changes are made as soon as possible, it’s essential that the marketing department own the updating process.
- Easy to use interface. Most marketers I know are not programmers. To make on-the-fly updates, this means that you can’t just direct them to pages and pages of code if you want them to be able to manage the site on their own. An easy to use WYSIWYG page editor will allow anyone to make updates without knowing HTML. Providing the option to look at the HTML code will give those marketers who moonlight as code monkeys the chance to show their skills as well.
- A way to easily create robust promotions. Marketers live and die by the ability to create powerful promotions for your products. Without an easy way to create promotions, cross-sells, and up-sells, their hands are tied. Choosing an ecommerce platform that makes creating logic-based promotions easy will give them a clear boost in reaching out to your customers with highly targeted offers.
To learn more about how to maximize the success of your B2B ecommerce site, download the white paper, B2B Ecommerce Success – Seven Questions to Consider When Beginning an Ecommerce Initiative.