02 May 5 Great B2B eCommerce Websites
What are the examples of great B2B e-commerce websites? Who is innovating in our space? What are the top companies focused on?
Everyday new B2B E-Commerce sites are launched. These 5 great B2B e-commerce websites have a number of things in common.
- From Grainger to Office Max, they are investing heavily into their customer experience.
- They have large complex catalogs, and are focused on getting their customers to the right product.
- Their product content is rich and detailed, and improving everyday.
- Their account management features are enabling their customers to become more and more efficient
- These site exhibit the best of the “Basics of B2B e-commerce”.
Examples of Great B2B eCommerce Websites
Quill.com is a great B2B site. They have focused on taxonomy, guided navigation, and search to make this a fantastic site.
I like how Quill merchandises as you hover over a category on their home page. Then as you go deeper into their site, they use product attributes to enable the customer to filter the search results.
The mainstay in the category of B2B E-Commerce, Grainger has a lot of functionality on its site. From search to guided navigation, their site is fantastic at getting customers to the right product. In addition, they have great account tools (as a logged in user), and have set the standard for features such as Quick Order.
MSC Industrial is one of my favorite sites. They have spent a tremendous amount of time on customer experience and optimizing their site for their customer base. Searching is extremely robust, and they have recently moved to a visual catalogue navigation like Fastenal and McMaster.
I love that in the search type ahead, when typing in part numbers it matches to MSC numbers, competitor numbers, and manufacturing numbers. I also think that their guided refinements are very well laid out. They use hundreds of attributes laid out in data sheet style. Testament to their extensive usability research that they have completed.
Long considered a standard in B2B e-commerce, McMaster features visual navigation and lightening fast response on all pages. Outside of providing a great experience, one of my favorite parts of the site is the inline add to cart and the responsive message you get after adding to cart. It tells you where it will ship from and that you still can get it shipped today.
McMaster and Fastenal have long had very product centric and visual home pages. Not of action imagery, but of the products themselves, directing customers directly into their catalogue. Great search and very rich and detail refinements in navigation. Instead of vertical navigation and refinements, they have instituted horizontal refinements in order to maximize the screen. Engineers that I have talked love this type of navigation as shown below.