Would you run smarter if you could?
In a recent report on the state of manufacturer ecommerce, Digital Commerce 360 asked 138 manufacturers to name their top priorities for new features and functions in B2B ecommerce. The #1 answer was “Advanced analytics,” with 41.5% of respondents calling it a top priority.
In B2B ecommerce, knowledge is power. But what kind of knowledge will give you the exact power you need to improve your business? In other words, what metrics should you use to monitor the health of your B2B ecommerce initiative?
In this article, I’ll give you examples of several common goals surrounding B2B ecommerce. For each goal, I’ll provide a metric you can use to measure success. Depending on your market, you may benefit from some (or all) of these.
Goal 1: Get more existing customers to sign up for ecommerce
This is the most common starting point for manufacturers and distributors who launch ecommerce. Unlike a B2C business, you’re not necessarily trying to attract new users. Rather, you have an established customer base, and you’re trying to move them off of phone/fax/email onto ecommerce.
Metric: User registration relative to overall customer base
Measuring adoption among existing customers is fairly straightforward. Take the number of ecommerce accounts you’ve signed up and divide it by your existing customer base (your total list of sold-tos from SAP).
- (587 ecommerce signups) / (1000 total customers) = 58.7% adoption rate
Goal 2: Equip Sales/CSRs to prioritize your highest-value ecommerce customers
In B2B, not every customer is created equal. Some will buy from you once or twice a year. Others will place large orders frequently. You’ve heard of the 80/20 rule—it definitely holds in B2B ecommerce. Often, 20% of your ecommerce customers account for 80% of your revenue. Your Sales and Customer Service teams need to prioritize and nurture those accounts on an ongoing basis.
Metric: Lifetime value of ecommerce customer
This metric tells you how much a single customer has generated for you over the life of their relationship with you. In other words, it’s all their ecommerce orders totaled up. This metric helps you prioritize customers because it focuses strictly on revenue.
Goal 3: Segment customers by order frequency (for improved email campaigns)
How often do your customers come back to the ecommerce store to place another order? Chances are, there’s quite a spread in the data. Some customers may come back on a regular rhythm, perhaps weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Others may come back seemingly at random. Running a smart ecommerce store means identifying growth opportunities among your customers. You can start by segmenting your customers by order frequency, then crafting email campaigns to reach out to low-frequency customers.
Metric: Order gap (average time between orders)
A good B2B ecommerce solution should track order frequency by account. This will tell you how much time elapses between orders for any given customer.
Goal 4: Learn how your highest-converting customers get to your site
There are many paths to your ecommerce website. Organic SEO (Google search), social media, email campaigns, and referral links can all send traffic to your site. But not all traffic is created equal. In fact, many traffic sources are low- to no-value. If you’re trying to increase conversion rate on your site, you need to consider which traffic sources are the highest value so you can focus your marketing efforts there.
Metric: Conversion rate by traffic source
Conversion rate is simply the percentage of visits that completed an ecommerce purchase. In Google Analytics, you can break this out by traffic source to see which source has the highest conversion rate.
Moving forward: Case study
Want to learn more about B2B ecommerce analytics? Download this case study on LORD Corporation. You’ll learn how native integrations within Corevist Commerce allow LORD to replay actual user experience to gain actionable insight into customer needs.