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B2B Online Marketplaces and Their Relevance

May 17, 2021

5 min read

If you are getting started with your business, regardless of it being a brick-and-mortar shop or an eCommerce store, you must have heard the words B2C and B2B. These are some of the buzzwords of the business world that you need to know about at all costs. If you’re wondering why that’s because these concepts lay the foundation of your business plan.

So, for example, if you are selling your products directly to the end customer, you’re participating in a business-to-customer work scenario. Similarly, if you’re selling to another business, you are in a business-to-business or B2B environment. While B2B and B2C are pretty alike, the most significant difference is the target customer. For B2B, sellers have to cater to the needs of a business rather than an individual, which also makes this area of business a lucrative opportunity. 

Today, with the rapidly increasing digitization, more and more sellers are venturing online. While B2B is a growing market space, eCommerce is helping it reach the next level. Statistics suggest that b2B eCommerce will reach an astonishing $1.2 trillion by the year 2021. Even though traditionally indirect spending was not very reluctantly performed through online purchases, things are shifting towards a more positive trend, paving the way for B2B marketplaces. So, if you’re thinking about leveraging the growing environment with your unique idea, now is the right time. Take a look below to know more about B2B online marketplaces and their relevance-

What are B2B Online Marketplaces?

B2B online marketplaces are nothing but digital environments where sellers can sell products to business customers. You can also consider it as the Amazon of business audiences. Anyone interested in selling products to other businesses can register on such marketplaces. Like ordinary digital stores, there is no end to the number of product categories one can offer to sell. 

More or less, the features of a B2C marketplace apply to B2B as well. This means that the digital platforms serve as a mediator between the seller and the business customer. The latter can buy products, make transactions, click and view images, among others. Similarly, these marketplaces strive to enhance customer satisfaction and make the process of buying and selling transparent for both parties.

Another one of the main features of the marketplace is its ease of access. B2B marketplaces are hassle-free where buyers choose to select products in a simplified manner and lucrative discounts, whereas sellers think of ways to grow their business. B2B sellers don’t have to undergo the burden of marketing their business conventionally in this process.

 In other words, while there is internal competition among the marketplace sellers, they don’t have to take extravagant steps to advertise on different platforms. In most cases, a B2B marketplace does it automatically. However, they might have some algorithms that evaluate your selling methods in terms of prices, delivery timings, etc., before highlighting it to the customer. 

The Relevance of B2B Marketplaces

With the wave of digitization taking over, more and more businesses are taking online platforms to look for products. This process has been further accelerated by the pandemic, where eCommerce has emerged as one of the critical industries catering night and day to customers’ requirements all over the world.  

Choice of Vendors

Like B2C, B2B marketplaces offer transparency to their customers in terms of price and product awareness. Moreover, the competition on the platform provided opportunities to the buyers to negotiate with their existing sellers or look for new options. Due to the added convenience and better rates, business customers might also look forward to expanding their product categories in many cases. The choice of vendors can make the business more competitive and provide better avenues for growth.

Quicker Delivery Options

Like any other eCommerce store today, B2B marketplaces work hard to provide customers with faster delivery at lower costs. Many of these vendors on the marketplace partner with third-party logistics providers for more courier options, more immediate delivery, and lower rates on bulk shipping options. This is also helping them scale their logistics and IT capabilities. Asa result, customers are receiving faster deliveries of their required products. 

Monetary Savings

While it depends on the niche of products that one is buying, online marketplaces in the B2B industry have enabled more savings for the buyer and seller. For the buyer, the logistics cost in finding a new supplier through a directory, negotiating for rates, and monitoring their spending and compliance was a tiresome task. Similarly, the cost of marketing, finding the right customers, and enhancing their selling capabilities have become less challenging, with more significant savings for the seller. 

Spending Insights

With B2B online marketplaces finding their way to business customers, fit companies’ advanced analytics capabilities have improved. This includes monitoring their indirect spending in a better and more effective manner. Additionally, this results in streamlined purchases that are valuable and useful for developing products, catering to business necessities, among others. 


B2B marketplaces have taken the existing buyer-supplier relationship to the next level. While it is retaining its essential elements, it is also making it more convenient. No doubt that product-based marketplaces might find it a little challenging to take off, they’ll eventually find a place in the rampant growth of the B2B industry. 

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