The constant evolution of digital transformation continues to influence and reach a growing number of companies. Therefore, it is not surprising to observe a Increase in companies with enterprise market (B2B)-focused business models choosing to sell online. But you still have to overcome big challenges like paymentssomething B2C companies should no longer think about with such fear.
A German university conducted a study on payment methods in B2B online retail to find out what consumers’ preferences are in this area (the respondents were German buyers). The main conclusion is this Shoppers want more simplicity and automation when paying via bank transferbecause although it is preferred by the majority, they also believe that it is the process that requires the most effort.
The study begins with a comparison of the business volume between B2B and B2C companies in Germany. While B2C online trade achieved sales of around 87 billion euros in 2021, B2B online trade is estimated at 352 billion euros in the same year. Hence the trade B2B online generates around four times more sales than B2C trade.
What are the preferred payment methods for B2B?
The payment methods offered by B2B companies in the online channel are very similar to those offered by B2B companies, but buyers use them differently. The most commonly used payment method is bank transfer, available in 71% of stores where respondents shopped. This is followed by other payment methods such as PayPal (42%), company credit card payments (38%) and advance payment (28%).
Although buyers are generally happy with the most popular payment methods, there are clear differences in the way they rate them. The purchase option by invoice is considered reliable and cheap, but also less easy, versatile and quick. For this reason, users are demanding simplification and automation of payment processing for credit purchases in order to reduce processes. On the other hand, what attracts buyers who use credit cards and PayPal is the simplicity, flexibility and speed; However, in these cases they are also concerned about reliability and possible additional costs.
The option “Buy now, pay later” It is starting to make inroads into B2B to enable payments by automatically generating invoices with customizable payment terms. Business customers receive the ordered products immediately, but have up to 120 days to make payment.