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Software for B2B eCommerce Business: Short Guide

  • Felix Rose-Collins
  • 4 min read
Software for B2B eCommerce Business: Short Guide

Intro

eCommerce can be a very lucrative business, and it does not have to be complicated. Choosing the right B2B eCommerce software solution for your organization may come with its pros and cons. We've covered the basics on this page, including eCommerce and selecting the right platform for your needs. We'll also review some popular options and their features to determine which one will work best for your unique selling environment.

What is eCommerce?

eCommerce is a retail business model in which businesses primarily sell goods and services online. It falls under the umbrella of online shopping, which encompasses any website where consumers can purchase products or services using the Internet, including marketplaces like Amazon.com or third-party retailers such as Walmart.com—but eCommerce refers explicitly to companies that focus on selling their unique products through an online storefront, rather than reselling other companies' wares.

How do I know if my company should use eCommerce software?

Suppose your company sells products directly to customers (rather than wholesaling out). In that case, you're an excellent candidate for using some eCommerce system to run your site and keep things running smoothly behind the scenes—especially if you want to grow from there.

How to choose an eCommerce platform

Choosing the right eCommerce platform is critical to your company's success. If you're prepared to invest in software that doesn't meet your needs, it can mean losing business and money.

Here are some things you should consider when choosing an eCommerce platform:

  • What kind of site do I want? Do I want a marketplace like Amazon or Etsy where other sellers offer their products alongside mine? Or do I want to design my unique storefront from scratch?
  • How much time do I have to dedicate daily to manage my website? If you run a one-person show and don't have many resources, consider using an easy-to-use, drag-and-drop interface designed for those with the limited technical ability (such as Shopify). If you're looking for something more customized or complex, consider platforms that offer more options through their back-end coding.

The good news is that there are several types of eCommerce platforms out there that allow entrepreneurs like yourself greater flexibility when building their businesses online.

What are the main types of eCommerce software?

eCommerce software comes in three forms: Open-source (free), closed source (paid), and hosted. Open-source is self-hosted by the merchant and must be set up and maintained by them. Closed-source eCommerce platforms are paid, but you don't need to worry about keeping the platform yourself; it's all done for you by the vendor. Hosted means that your eCommerce site runs on a server owned by your vendor.

The main types of eCommerce software are open-source and closed source. Closed-source eCommerce platforms are paid, but they're generally easier to set up and maintain because the vendor takes care of everything for you.

Build yourself or use hosted platforms

You can build your eCommerce platform from scratch or use one of the hosted options. For most businesses, it's recommended to use an open-source hosted platform as it requires much less time and money to get up and running.

Considering building your eCommerce software, you should know that this is a significant undertaking. It takes enormous time and resources to get everything set up correctly (and then maintain it afterward).

Dedicated open-source software tools

Open-source software is software whose source code is available to the general public for use or modification from its original design. In contrast to proprietary software, open-source software is typically more cost-effective.

Open-source software began as a concept related to computer programming and became widely known when the Free Software Foundation popularized it in the mid-1980s. The phrase was coined by Christine Peterson, credited with coining this term in 1998 during a meeting of FOSS (Free and open-source Software) activists in Palo Alto, California.

Comparison of eCommerce software solutions

The best eCommerce software platforms are designed to help you build an online store and manage its day-to-day operations. These platforms are typically hosted on third-party servers, but some have self-hosted versions.

When choosing the best eCommerce software for your store, consider whether you're looking for a basic online storefront or one that offers advanced features like order management, analytics, and inventory management. Make sure that any platform you choose integrates easily with existing technology, such as shipping services and payment gateways.

OroCommerce

OroCommerce is an open-source eCommerce platform meant to be simple, straightforward, and easy to use. To keep things straightforward for users, many of the most essential functions are tucked away in a sidebar menu — making them easy to find but not cluttering up a cluttered interface.

A few other key features of OroCommerce:

  • A transparent, one-page checkout process that's easy on the eyes keeps customers focused on making purchases.
  • A built-in sales CRM (customer relationship management) system that helps you track customers' shopping habits and preferences.
  • An integrated product catalog where you can add detailed listings for every item you sell.

Magento

Magento is a very comprehensive eCommerce platform that covers all bases. It can do everything from basic features like creating an online store and handling payments to advanced features like third-party API integration and customization.

Magento is also known for being powerful, flexible, and customizable. With Magento, you can access an extensive library of extensions (addons) that will enable you to do complex tasks such as product catalogs with hundreds of thousands of products or integrate with other systems through APIs.

Finally, Magento is scalable enough so that if your business proliferates, you won't need to worry about how much traffic it can handle or whether it will be able to scale along with your growth.

Optimizely

Optimizely is a website optimization tool that helps increase website conversions and revenue.

Optimizely's website optimization platform is used by over 300,000 customers worldwide.

They are the largest provider of A/B testing software for web and mobile applications, with over 36 million users in 134 countries.

Optimizely offers a wide range of features, including integration with Google Analytics, split testing and multivariate testing capabilities, heatmaps of visitor clicks on web pages, and mobile app screens to identify areas where visitors are more likely to take action.

In conclusion

In the end, it all comes down to your business needs. You can choose from various eCommerce platforms, each with pros and cons. We recommend researching before making any decisions, so you don't get stuck with an unsuitable platform or service provider.

Felix Rose-Collins

Felix Rose-Collins

is the Co-founder of Ranktracker, With over 10 years SEO Experience . He's in charge of all content on the SEO Guide & Blog, you will also find him managing the support chat on the Ranktracker App.

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