Building Better B2B

Since 2005, I’ve been thinking about Business-to-Business (B2B) Internet solutions and how we could make them better. About that time, I wrote a series of thoughts, which are being re-published here. And guess what – I’m not even sure that they need to be updated much!

I’m not claiming to have all the answers, but I’ve decided that it’s time to start “Building Better B2B”

The way I see it, the following needs to be addressed:

Building Better B2B needs soup-to-nuts integration

The B2B sites out there are generally in a pretty rotten state – yeah every company worth it’s salt has a big web site, some even have online ordering etc., but it just doesn’t hang together

Building Better B2B needs to counter the “been there, done that” mentality

There’s a huge amount of comfort in “we have all that” and no awareness or interest – either at management level or within the ranks – in how well it’s done, whether it’s being updated or if it’s (measurably) profitable

Building Better B2B needs to link “web stuff” with business goals

There’s little awareness of web-related KPIs (how does PageRank work, are more visitors a good thing, how do I know) and certainly no linkage between those KPIs and the Business KPIs (revenue, costs, profit – to name a few)

Building Better B2B needs to educate the people making the business decisions

“Web 2.0” isn’t even recognised as a buzzword, never mind as a playing field for (potentially) useful technology – “What? You want us to CHAT with our customers?”

Building Better B2B needs to address “Internet Angst”

There’s a huge fear of rocking the boat – “Our sales partners wouldn’t like that”, “We don’t want ‘C’ customers”, “You can’t sell widgets the way amazon sells books”

Building Better B2B needs to debunk some of the mystery

“It’s not rocket science” – which is probably why the Rocket (aka Widget) Scientists just “don’t get it!”
In the “Building Better B2B” series, I’ll be exploring lots of ideas that address each of these issues. Why don’t you join me on the journey?