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5 mistakes to avoid in B2B eCommerce

min read

published on

April 14, 2022

B2B buying trends have varied hugely over the last few years. When the pandemic forced physical retailers to close their doors, B2B businesses - like everyone else - looked to carry out the bulk of their sales online. The unpredictable economy B2B businesses are facing makes it  even more important to build and run a successful eCommerce platform.

Maintaining existing processes from a traditional ERP

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is a fundamental part of most large businesses that aims to unify people, processes and technology across an organization. Yet it’s time consuming and complex.  That’s because ERP historically was built for internal processes and not built for modern sales across multiple channels.  

When businesses consider replatforming or launching a new B2B ecommerce platform, the common mistake for businesses is to keep their current ERP processes in a new platform. Classical ERP e-commerce solutions depend on multiple layers of modules to connect and send data to and through various systems. However, these integrations are still part of a monolithic system. This means that if one aspect of the system fails, the entire system follows, requiring extensive time and resources to fix.


Classical ERP e-commerce solutions depend on multiple layers of modules to connect and send data to and through various systems. However, these integrations are still part of a monolithic system. This means that if one aspect of the system fails, the entire system follows, requiring extensive time and resources to fix.

Replacing ERP e-commerce systems with API’s means moving away from this monolithic structure and to a headless architecture powered by microservices. As an outcome, this helps businesses scale as they go and without overloading a system with more layers as all data is structured and centralized in one platform with no added workload for employees.

Moving your classical ERP system into a headless microservices platform will help improve accuracy, efficiency and a better customer experience for your clients and internal employees.  

Failing to modernize your platform architecture  

A surprising number of B2B businesses have eCommerce platforms that still rely on outdated monolithic architecture. And though these self-sufficient systems do have their benefits, they generally offer an archaic, one-size-fits-all approach which makes them fiddly to adapt. The B2B businesses operating in today’s volatile and variable market need more than this. Enter an open and cloud based  architecture - a fast, flexible solution which enables easy customisation and maximum agility and scalability.  


Making the switch from monolithic enterprise software suites to MACH is a foolproof move for growing B2B businesses. As you’ll no doubt be aware, MACH is a handy acronym that collectively stands for microservices-based, API-first, cloud-native and headless technologies. Combined, the different elements of MACH architecture empower you to align responsively with the market, so you can update or replace your site’s components quickly and efficiently, without touching the back-end. That means greater freedom for web designers, improved compliance, and shortened time-to-market.

Choosing a static eCommerce platform

Whether you’re pro digitalization or not, your eCommerce platform has to be at the very heart of your B2B business if you’re going to future-proof it. There’s a whole host of different platforms out there to choose from - and some of these only offer the bare minimum in terms of features, without the capacity for upgrades or improvements. Locking yourself into a static eCommerce platform that can’t grow with your business could smother your performance further down the line, and cause considerable headaches as you try (and fail) to implement customizations.


When you’re signing up to an eCommerce platform, resist the temptation to think only about where your B2B business is right now. Instead, choose technology which can be easily scaled up or down in line with your needs - a platform that allows you to adapt quickly to industry trends or new regulatory requirements. In short, think about the future of your business, and choose an eCommerce platform that can help you secure it.

Over-engineering without deep understanding of buyers

You might already have an established base of B2B customers, but the beauty of digitization is that anyone can find and access your products or services once they’re available online. A surprising number of B2B business owners aren’t fully aware of SEO, or the qualities which Google will reward you for by giving you a shiny top spot on page 1. If your eCommerce platform doesn’t use the right language and structure, or you miss the opportunity to plant key signifiers for Google, you’ll have trouble demonstrating your expertise, authority and trust (E.A.T.) within the industry. But worse - unoptimized content can directly hamper your platform’s performance, in terms of both traffic and conversion.


While fixing any technical (or off-page) SEO issues may need to be outsourced to an expert or web developer, there’s plenty of quick fixes you can carry out to try and obey those ever-changing ranking factors:

  • Identify your core keywords and use them strategically throughout
  • Check your meta data fits within Google’s character limit
  • Ensure each page only has a single H1 tag, which clearly describes the content
  • Simplify overly technical language to make it more digestible - you might even want to check the readability score of your content
  • Add  FAQ sections to answer commonly asked questions and target featured snippets
  • Add internal links to other pages on your eCommerce platform, wherever relevant
  • Ensure images are optimized with descriptive file names and alt text
  • Avoid duplicating content where possible, as this can negatively impact your ranking

Insufficient B2B services

When you’re ordering something from a B2C site, the payment methods you see usually consist of a standard HTML form, and a buy-now-pay-later solution. But it’s not that simple for B2B buyers, who expect the same varied options they’d have when paying over the phone, or in your store. Your customers might pay via a simple card transaction, but they could also need to issue purchase orders on credit, pay by electronic check, or use an eWallet to pay via smartphone.

Choose a B2B eCommerce platform that can offer buyers multiple different payment methods, as well as the functionality for variable pricing. For example, you’ll need to factor in options for discount bulk buying, price negotiation, and regional pricing in line with local taxes and trading zones.  

Crucially, make it straightforward and convenient to place orders on your site, with clear instructions at each stage of the payment process, and the option to get in touch should something go wrong.

Transformation projects around new B2B eCommerce can seem like a huge challenge and dramatic change for businesses who never digitalized but these challenges can be much less hard to overcome with an agile technology and approach.

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About the author
Arnaud Rihiant
Founder & CEO @ DJUST

Expert in topics on B2B, eCommerce, market trends, business strategy

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