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Trends Shaping B2B Commerce in 2022

Industries are constantly evolving, and the B2B commerce landscape is no different. The future is coming, and it’s not always clear what that will mean for your business. One thing we can all be sure of, though, is that things are going to change. In the past few years alone, we’ve seen several disruptive trends in technology shape how people work and live their lives. So if you’re wondering what the next five years have in store for B2B commerce, this blog post has some predictions on the top 10 trends shaping B2B commerce in 2022.

1. The Art Of Relationship-Building: Connecting With Customers

The days of cold calling are long gone. Technology has enabled buyers to cut out the middle man (you), which means you can’t rely on making first contact with prospects anymore. Your customers are already talking to each other online about your company, what they like and dislike, what new features they’d like to see etc., so you need to learn how to listen to connect with them. The more conversations your prospects have about your business, the better informed you’ll be about their needs and pain points. Use this information as an opportunity to develop a personalized experience that offers real value for your audience.

2 . Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning In Every Aspect Of The Customer Journey

AI is no longer just for sci-fi movies; it’s here, and it’s changing our lives as we know it. From fraud detection to virtual assistants, AI takes over the customer experience, and this trend won’t slow down anytime soon. Automated service bots will offer customers an easy way to handle simple transactions such as checking stock levels or placing orders on your website without waiting for a human response. These intelligent agents can even remember things like personal preferences and past orders, making them ideal for delivering a more tailored shopping experience as Amazon effectively. This doesn’t mean you should get rid of your support team altogether, but rather consider how automation can fit into your strategy to deliver excellent service that meets the needs of today’s time-pressured customers.

3 . Blockchain: A Game Changer For B2B Commerce

It’s no secret that more and more industries are embracing blockchain technology, which is forecast to overtake 5 Trillion USD in market value by 2030. Processes that involve currency exchange will be the first to experience this change, including invoices and trade finance, where banks offer letters of credit for importers and exporters. Your company may not deal with international trading or financial transactions yet, but it’s essential to keep an eye on what your competitors are doing before jumping into anything new.

Blockchain might provide the opportunity you’ve been waiting for to take your business to the next level. As a popular way of transferring digital assets, this technology has already disrupted the way we transfer money, verify ownership of digital goods and store records. In addition, blockchain technology is now being applied to the supply chain to improve product safety, provide transparency between companies connected in global networks, reduce transaction settlement latency and introduce intelligent contracts. If you want your business to benefit from the latest technology, it’s worth investigating how blockchain can enhance the B2B commerce experience for you and your customers.

4 . Digital Twin Technology: The Future Of Product Information Management

Like AI, digital twin technology will have enormous implications for customer experience management across almost every industry by 2025. With their exact copy or replica stored digitally, these “digital twins” are helping retailers track inventory through the stages of its life cycle so they can offer reliable information anytime a customer asks for it. For example, an online shopper can check the availability of a product without needing to contact customer service or wait for an email response.

Digital twins are expected to save manufacturers billions in lost revenue through improved supply chain management, too, with companies able to monitor their products at all times, including when they are in transit.

5 . Customer Experience Management

If you’re serious about delivering a unique customer experience that sets your company apart from the competition, then personalization is definitely on trend for 2022. As more B2B businesses recognize how important it is to engage with their audience, there will be opportunities everywhere for forward-thinking suppliers who value transparency and communication. The most successful companies are already leveraging data to get a complete view of their customers’ buying journey, allowing them to connect with potential clients before they are ready to buy. This builds loyalty through brand recognition and reputation and helps businesses identify the right opportunities for expansion in new markets.

Today’s consumers aren’t just looking for convenience and better value when it comes to shopping: according to recent research by Walker, they want personalized experiences that create “meaningful engagement,” too. Businesses can achieve this by communicating directly with customers via social media, email marketing campaigns, newsletters, and targeted ads. It’s even possible to deliver highly relevant push notifications based on specific customer interests or past buying habits, which boosts the chances of converting casual browsers into loyal customers.

A similar trend is the use of chatbots, which are automated programs that can fulfill customer requests and answer questions on your company’s social media pages or website. By offering 24/7 support to clients through their preferred channel (e.g., messaging, email, etc.), these bots give businesses another way to stand out from the competition.

6. Rearchitecture: Cloud Vs. On-premise? Or Both?

Competing for a slice of the $1 trillion digital commerce market requires more than just good products and services. Every aspect of your company’s technology infrastructure needs to be world-class too. So if you’re looking for ways to minimize costs while improving productivity and scalability, cloud computing is the best option for most businesses today.

RFC standards and application programming interfaces (APIs) have made it much easier to integrate your company’s existing data into cloud-based systems, too, meaning that companies can transition their IT resources to the cloud over time. So if you’re only looking to implement a couple of new cloud solutions initially, such as customer relationship management (CRM) and business intelligence (BI), you could save money as well as future-proofing your company’s digital commerce strategy.

On the other hand, organizations with more complex requirements may be better off sticking with an on-premise solution instead: this allows them to secure all their software licenses and manage network access through one centralized system for greater control and accountability across the entire IT department.

While cloud and on-premise solutions both have strengths and weaknesses, there’s no need to dismiss either entirely: by choosing a hybrid approach; it’s possible to take advantage of the benefits of both without running into preventable problems down the line.

7. Blockchain Technology Will Revolutionise Fintech & Supply Chain Management

It’s safe to say that blockchain technology has been one of the most significant talking points in the tech industry over the past couple of years, with many companies now waking up to its far-reaching implications for business across all sectors. For example, by eliminating the need for costly intermediaries such as banks when transferring funds from client to supplier invoices, blockchain can help businesses save time and money while ensuring their suppliers are paid on time.

Although blockchain can’t yet be used for all types of transactions (e.g., financial derivatives), it’s still an excellent way to track and record sensitive data such as medical or insurance records. Over time, this level of transparency and accountability will become the norm when it comes to organizing customer information, which is why companies should start gaining a better understanding of how blockchain works now.

8. Data Security: Cloud-based Storage & Cybercrime Deterrence

Whether you’re using cloud storage, on-premise servers, or both, the best way to protect your company’s data from cybercriminals is by deploying a secure storage solution that uses encryption technology whenever possible. This makes it much harder for hackers to access your files without authorization.

Contrary to popular belief, cybercriminals are not always looking for your company’s confidential data for illegal purposes: many want to sell this information on the black market instead. So by making it harder to identify potentially valuable information, you can reduce the risk of becoming a victim of financial crime too.

9. Artificial Intelligence: Enhancing Customer Experiences

Investing in artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most effective ways for companies to differentiate themselves from their competitors and deliver a more efficient service to their customers. Thanks to recent advancements in big data analytics, it’s now possible for machines to process large quantities of unstructured information within seconds, meaning that AI-powered systems can learn about customer preferences with minimal human input.

One of the main constraints on implementing an AI system at present is its high cost: this makes it difficult for small and midsized businesses (SMBs) without dedicated IT staff to take advantage of intelligent systems. However, we’re already starting to see a shift towards cheaper options as virtual personal assistants (VPAs) become more sophisticated over time.

10. The Internet of Things (IoT) & Connected Devices

Although the internet of things (IoT) may not be a new concept, its value continues to grow as more devices are connected to the internet and companies start exploring utilizing this technology in their business processes. By identifying opportunities for improvement through analyzing data captured by intelligent devices, it’s possible to reduce costs while improving customer service at the same time.

For example, using IoT sensors in warehouses could help companies monitor inventory levels in real-time before making decisions about shipping or reordering stock. Similarly, telemetry systems that collect information about vehicle performance could contribute towards more significant safety standards on public roads in the future.

In conclusion, there are many emerging technologies set to impact the corporate world in 2022 and beyond. Despite this, it’s important to remember that new concepts can take years or even decades to reach their full potential. So, while companies should look at deploying these solutions as soon as possible, they should also bear in mind that some of these technologies will continue to evolve.