Life moves fast and business even moves faster in the B2B eCommerce world.

Speed is so key that 86% of B2B buyers prefer using self-service platforms to talking with a sales rep (McKinsey). That’s why companies need robust ecommerce platforms that can keep up.

eCommerce platform providers have developed incredible solutions to manage complex B2B transactions no matter the size and number of people involved. With the right platform and payment methods, businesses easily manage complex B2B transactions no matter the transaction size, time or number of people involved. The best B2B ecommerce platform delivers an excellent customer experience and greater efficiency at each stage of the process – from pricing, discounting and ordering through to invoicing and payment.

As a global payments solution, Rapyd has worked with businesses across a range of industries and appreciates the importance of finding the right B2B ecommerce portal. We’ve used our experience and research to help you select the best B2B ecommerce platform for your own unique requirements.

Features Essential for B2B eCommerce

When selecting a B2B ecommerce platform, it is important to know what criteria are the most important for your particular business. Not only do you need to understand current needs, but you must also consider future goals and scalability. Carefully consider the following features when selecting your B2B ecommerce platform: 

Ease of Configuration

Are you looking to customize or fully use all of your platform’s functionalities? Then you’ll need to make sure that your platform configuration is plug-and-play. If not, you’ll need to find the developer resources to test and manage the solution.

Compatibility with Existing Systems

Your business already relies on a range of solutions for your critical processes. When considering a new ecommerce platform, be sure your solution can integrate with existing solutions to avoid integration headaches.

Scalability and Longevity

Cloud-based solutions keep up with today’s rapidly evolving business environment. Choose cloud to avoid investing in hardware that depreciates and becomes quickly dated.

Payments Customization

Choose an ecommerce platform that allows for digital commerce payment customization. By accepting the preferred payment methods of your B2B customers you’ll ensure a frictionless checkout experience and build customer loyalty too.

Pricing Flexibility

Your platform should offer pricing flexibility for all the ways you do business. Whether you offer customers volume-based discounts, early payment, or other special pricing agreements, your platform needs to keep up with each of these payment needs.

Level of Technical Expertise Required

To fully tap into your platform’s functionality, you’ll need a certain degree of technical expertise. The question is, how much? Some solutions have one simple user interface to manage their solution and plug-ins with little technical know-how needed. Others require an advanced coding background and development skills for implementation.

Our List of the Best B2B eCommerce Platforms

Although these platforms all support the needs of B2B businesses, they differ in their functionality, flexibility, and integration with a broader commerce suite. Some offer an all-in-one approach, while others allow businesses to build a tailored solution by integrating best-of-breed technologies from several providers. In some cases, the choice of vendor is influenced by existing technologies and development and customization resources.

Best “All-in-One” B2B eCommerce Platforms

WooCommerce B2B

WooCommerce B2B enables a mode in WooCommerce that offers functionality for B2B ecommerce with an all-in-one plugin. This is ideal for businesses with an existing WordPress site, as adding it is a relatively quick and easy process. It is highly scalable and can manage complex requirements. There is some level of technical (rather than developmental) skill required to configure WooCommerce.

WooCommerce has no setup charge or monthly fees. Businesses pay 2.9% + $0.30 for each transaction made with U.S.issued credit cards or debit cards. For cards issued outside the U.S., there’s an additional 1% fee. Other payment gateways are available for international transactions and local payment methods.

  • Key features: Storefront design, order management, product search and filters
  • Pros: Those familiar with WordPress will find comfort in this platform and will benefit from its rich in-store themes. It shares many of the pros that come from utilizing WordPress, like the ease of use, hyper-flexibility, and many plugins to check out. Reporting and marketing tools come built-in. 
  • Cons: WooCommerce is not as suitable for non-WordPress websites, and it was not designed for wholesale and B2B selling out-of-the-box. It was primarily a platform built for B2B, and it shows. While it is open source and initially free, making it into a platform that is suitable for all businesses could eventually require a hefty monetary investment.

NuOrder

NuOrder focuses on simplicity and streamlining B2B processes and delivers what it promises, but it requires time to initially understand the processes and platform interface. Virtual showrooms are easy on the user, and NuOrder is the current top choice for retailers such as Nordstrom and Coach.

  • Key features: CRM, Email Marketing, Inventory Management, Mobile Access, Shipping and Warehouse Management
  • Pros: Reviewers frequently mention that the UX on the buyer’s side is exceptional. The CRM is useful in general, with good customization and reporting capabilities.
  • Cons: Inventory syncing is delayed by up to 15 minutes, causing occasional issues with overselling. On the back end, the site can be glitchy and counterintuitive. Onboarding is notoriously difficult. 

Pricing: After an initial free trial, there is an annual fee determined by retailer size – reports are anywhere from $7,000-$100,000 a year, depending on business size and needs.

Get Your Report

The Total Economic Impact of the Rapyd Solution

Discover the ROI of Implementing Rapyd Fintech as a Service. Download the Forrester Consulting Report.

Download Report
Rapyd ROI Report cover

Big Commerce

Big Commerce is a flexible, configurable option, based on a combination of core technology and extensive partnerships. They are known for delivering a great customer experience with an easy-to-use, customized, and extend interface. Its curated app store provides support for clients at all growth stages. However, it does involve a steep learning curve and requires a greater degree of expertise to enable successful digital transformations.

  • Key features: Multi-currency, real-time shipping quotes, mobile app
  • Pros: BigCommerce has a curated app store and excellent A/B testing capabilities. Customer service is excellent, and many report that BigCommerce provides great value for the cost. 
  • Cons: There is limited support for vertical-specific needs, and weak inventory and promotions offerings. On top of that, some of the website designs and templates are unwieldy and difficult to manage, and some mention their tutorials are outdated.
  • Pricing: After a 30-day trial, there is a $2,000 onboarding fee and then a recurring fee of $299 per month 

Best Platforms Part of a Suite

Salesforce B2B Commerce

Salesforce offers businesses a breath of support and resources. There is extensive functionality that leverages third-party capabilities. This may be one of the best routes for companies that have Salesforce CRM in place and are looking to build an end-to-end customer engagement solution. Salesforce could be a good option for those who are already using products in its wide ecosystem 

  • Key features: Merchandising tools and one-touch payment options, integration with Salesforce CRM and ecosystem
  • Pros: Easy integrations with other salesforce products and comprehensive pricing, orders, and customer data. It has many features, is very detailed, and can help you in every part of the sales funnel. It has good integrations with other software, but you need a team to make it happen faster.
  • Cons: There is a steep learning curve and a high cost for this platform. Because it is so detailed, it is sometimes difficult to have quick information in the palm of your hand, especially when desiring dashboards and reports.
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing.

SAP Commerce Cloud

SAP is also a large enterprise solution, although with more limited integration options. It has a greater focus on building out the SAP Customer Experience Suite. This is a strong option for businesses looking for a complete single-vendor solution. 

  • Key features: Catalog and search, product recommendations, discounts and promos.
  • Pros: SAP has true omnichannel capabilities and highly personalized customer experiences. It is adaptable, suitable for internationalization, and reliable. Out-of-the-box features are intuitive and useful. 
  • Cons: Some customers desire deeper integration with other SAP Customer Experience Components. It requires expert implementation and training. Its community is less active than solutions like Magento. It can also be slow, and lacks standalone functionality, which decreases its overall ROI. 
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing.

Oracle CX

Oracle CX is a comprehensive solution that integrates with its ERP and financial offerings – ideal for existing Oracle customers to build an end-to-end solution with a single vendor.

  • Key features: Site development in familiar frameworks: JavaScript, HTML5, CSS3, and NodeJS for cross-platform development targeted to multiple platforms
  • Pros: The API-based approach makes it easy to integrate with other solutions, like Shopify. It is a generally easy and user-friendly tool, so it is one of the best eCommerce platforms for companies without many developers to implement and maintain their solution. 
  • Cons: Oracle CX Commerce has difficult to navigate documentation, making set-up and maintenance time-consuming. Support could be improved, and the UI is known to not be as friendly to developers. 
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing.

IBM Digital Commerce

In June 2019, IBM Digital Commerce was acquired by HCL Technologies, so the connection to IBM is a bit of a misnomer. This is a large enterprise ecommerce platform for companies with complex needs. The program emphasizes streamlining and documentation to deliver a more personal customer experience. Getting up-to-speed on the platform does require time and expertise and may not be ideal for businesses looking at a platform for the first time. Many reviewers mention that companies need a full developer team dedicated to customizing and maintaining the platform.

  • Key features: Flexible catalog management, multi-site implementation, headless commerce
  • Pros: Because the program is a large enterprise ecommerce solution, its complexity and scalability are hard to beat. Support is known to be readily available and helpful, and out-of-the-box features are robust and easy to implement straight away.
  • Cons: There are steep technological challenges for larger customizations, and the backend tech could use modernization. The catalog load and application is huge and takes a long time to fully understand.
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing. Pricing is customized based on the needs of the organization.

Best Platforms for Customization

Magento

Magento Commerce, owned by Adobe Commerce, is a robust enterprise solution and is best suited to companies looking to customize the solution to differentiate on customer experience. It is not “plug and play”, but it is feature-rich and can be tailored to specific needs and scale with the requirements of your business.

Magento Commerce is suitable for mid-market and large enterprise clients. It’s one of the best enterprise eCommerce solutions available for companies with rapidly evolving needs and those that differentiate on leading in customer experience.

Its Progressive Web Apps (PWA) studio makes it easy for companies to design progressive web apps that deliver an app-like experience to the growing population of mobile shoppers.

  • Key features: Magento PWA Studio, on-premise and hosted solutions.
  • Pros: Magento Commerce is one of the most robust, flexible, user-friendly, and scalable platforms in the ecommerce market. In terms of features, no other platform holds a candle to Adobe Commerce. It is a powerful solution and one of the best eCommerce platforms for marketing, user experience, and business efficiency.
  • Cons: Developing Magento Commerce is high-cost. There is a steep learning curve and it can be time-consuming to develop and move through the layers of capabilities. It also requires powerful web hosting, so businesses may need to invest in an upgrade, increasing cost. 
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing.

Commercetools

Commercetools’ strength is in its platform architecture but requires customers to have strong technical capabilities and an existing business process management system. They provide cloud-native APIs for large retail companies and enterprise clients as an alternative to a fully custom build. It is a developer-friendly solution that utilizes a microservices approach. It is version-less, elastic and extremely cost-effective.

  • Key features: Easy customization/adaptation, complex cataloging, great UX.
  • Pros: Significantly less expensive than building a solution in-house, Commercetools is also highly elastic. The cloud-based nature of it results in smooth auto-scale and auto-update capacities. This is one of the best ecommerce solutions for online stores that deal with a varying but heavy load that needs flexibility depending on the circumstances.
  • Cons: Commercetools relies on customers’ existing enterprise BPM system for workflow management and there is limited availability of out-of-the-box integrations. A company that decides to use Commercetools has to have a strong technical team, as it is incredibly complex by nature. There is no personalized end-user experience you can build with Commercetools. Businesses must build a storefront and content management system elsewhere.
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing.

Elastic Path

Also requiring development expertise, Elastic Path is designed for developers looking for a solution they can customize for very specific business models and create unique commerce experiences. An early leader in headless commerce, its hypermedia REST API gives developers the flexibility to build almost any eCommerce experience they can dream up, with virtually no limit on what partner solutions it can be integrated with.

  • Key features: Omnichannel support and store search
  • Pros: Incredibly flexible and customizable, Elastic Path offers true multi-channel sales. It is one of the best B2B ecommerce platforms for an enterprise that needs something with the ability to quickly launch into new markets while rapidly developing features to meet unique needs in those new markets or locations. 
  • Cons: Requires a developer-focused culture and is difficult for businesses with less-robust technical teams to utilize. The program’s complexity is a double-edged sword, as its possibilities are limitless but it can make changes unwieldy and time-consuming.
  • Pricing: See vendor for pricing.

What Are the Benefits of Choosing the Right B2B eCommerce Platform?

Choosing the best B2B ecommerce platform for your business gives you a launchpad to accelerate growth. B2B digital commerce can provide access to new customers online in domestic and international markets.

Expanding your portfolio of products is easier online and can be managed with greater efficiency and at a lower cost. However, any success is dependent on building from the right platform. Your B2B ecommerce solution must align with and support your business needs both today and tomorrow.

With many alternatives available, finding the best b2b ecommerce platform requires careful consideration. The best B2B ecommerce platforms deliver an excellent customer experience and greater efficiency at each stage of the process – from pricing, creating discounts and processing customer orders to invoicing and payment.

Sources

  1. https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/marketing-and-sales/our-insights/finding-the-right-digital-balance-in-b2b-customer-experience
  2. https://www.forrester.com/report/US+B2B+eCommerce+Will+Hit+12+Trillion+By+2021/-/E-RES136173#

Your All-In-One Solution For Local and International B2B Payments and Payouts

Power your B2B ecommerce initiative with a customized checkout experience that lets business customers pay with their preferred methods.

Payment and payout methods that drive global businesses:

  • Accept global ACH, cards, virtual accounts and cash payments
  • Disburse funds using wires, global ACH and even issue your own cards
  • Better manage the complexity of your international receivables with payment methods that can help lower your days sales outstanding (DSO). 
Learn More
Cheerful Mid Adult Man With Beard Using Laptop In Kitchen And Smiling Depicting Investing Apps
Business People Discussing Payment Gateways Adyen And Checkout.com
Business Woman Holding Papers Discussing Global Payments

Subscribe Via Email

Thank You!

You’ve Been Subscribed.