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Many articles already cover how e-commerce returns affect your B2B business. But we wanted to look at it from your customers’ point of view. Therefore, in this blog post, we reveal how errors and returns impact your customers’ organizations, plus how you can overcome their challenges by optimizing your e-commerce returns management and preventing errors.
This blog post is based on the results of our B2B Buying Process 2019 Report. For this report, we commissioned Sapio Research to survey 560 professional (B2B) buyers from around the world, to uncover their preferences, needs, and challenges.
Meeting your buyers’ needs and helping them overcome their challenges will improve your customer satisfaction. Naturally, a high customer satisfaction rate leads to increased repeat orders, reduced churn, and an overall increase in revenue. So, understanding and meeting your buyers’ needs is crucial to your organization’s success.
On average, B2B buyers place an online order with their top 10 suppliers at least once a week. But their online experience is far from perfect, with 44% of buyers experiencing online order errors with their top 10 suppliers at least every 2 weeks.
This includes 19% of buyers who experience order errors weekly and 9% who deal with errors on a daily basis.
As can be observed in the table above, the errors your customers encounter are caused by several different factors. But we do see two separate categories emerge:
Our research found that each day, B2B buyers’ organizations place between 401 and 550 orders, comprising an average of 41 to 50 pieces per order. With this sheer number of orders, it’s easy to see how a slight inefficiency in the ordering and returns process can have a profound impact on your customers’ organizations.
It comes as no surprise, therefore, that e-commerce returns and errors have a significant impact on the sales, profitability, efficiency, and productivity of your customers’ organizations.
On average, online order errors and returns decrease their profitability, efficiency, and productivity by 6-10%, and their sales by 1-5%. A small percentage of buyers (5-6%) even experience a more than 25% decrease in sales, productivity, efficiency, and profitability, following e-commerce order errors and returns!
Sapio’s research uncovered that the region and industry most impacted by e-commerce returns and errors are the Benelux region (Belgium, Netherlands, and Luxembourg) and the electronics industry. More than 30% of buyers in the Benelux region experience a decrease of more than 11% in efficiency and productivity. While more than 29% of buyers in the electronics industry experience a decrease of more than 11% in efficiency and profitability.
See how your customers in your region are impacted by online order errors and e-commerce returns:
Sapio’s research found that your buyers’ top 2 key performance indicators (KPIs) are cost savings and increasing efficiency. Facilitating an error-free order intake — and consequently avoiding any decrease in profitability, efficiency, productivity, and sales for your customers’ organizations — is, therefore, key to delivering excellent B2B customer experience.
These are some of the steps you can take to prevent e-commerce returns and errors, due to both human errors and incorrectly displayed information:
Looking for (more) advice on how to meet your B2B customers’ demands? Download our 2019 report about your buyers’ behavior, current demands, and future needs.
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Buyers want to buy more online.
Download our report to find out how to meet their needs.