Online retail is booming – information about their customers has become a valuable commodity for e-commerce operators to ensure they can successfully meet growing demand. Innovative technologies such as real-time data processing help retailors analyze their customers’ behavior and tailor-make offers according to their wishes. What benefits and what opportunities does this create for B2B and B2C companies?
2020 was a record year for online retail in Germany – in part due to the Corona pandemic – and applies both to the end customer retail market as well as B2B businesses. Last year, overall e-commerce saw revenues of 83.3 billion euros, a growth of 9.2 percent over the previous year. A further increase to over 100 billion euros is expected in 2021. But what technologies can B2B and B2C companies employ to meet the increasing demand for individual customer offers?
Increasing expectations for B2B companies: Mimacom enables modern after-sales service for industrial companies with innovative online portals
Customers’ needs for online portals is growing, fueled by the cross-industry increase in online purchasing transactions. Industrial companies are, therefore also specifically tailoring their offers to their business customers and their individual needs. Mimacom offers numerous innovative solutions in this area. The B2B portal from Hauni, an internationally operating manufacturer of machinery and equipment and part of the Körber Group, is a representative example of digital portal solutions from Mimacom: Working together with Hauni, we have created a digital touchpoint for modern after-sales services. Business customers can use it not only to purchase spare parts for machines, but also to query very specific and individual information. This simplifies processes for both the company and the customer and makes Hauni a pioneer in its industry. It illustrates the increasing importance of digitization and automation of customer portals.
Individualization for B2C companies: Mimacom enables targeted online offers for end-customer retailers through real-time data processing
Over and above the development and implementation of online portals such as these, Mimacom offers the integration of further technologies, including real-time data streaming. The possibilities offered by real-time data processing are increasingly gaining importance when platforms are based on the needs of individual users. The collection and analysis of data in real-time plays a decisive role, particularly in the B2C business, where many customers remain anonymous. It enables online retailers to analyze customer behavior optimally and to react to it.
By integrating technologies for real-time data streaming, Mimacom gives companies the opportunity to create targeted service offers and allows them to enter into an individual relationship with customers. E-commerce platforms such as these enable, for example, customer interests to be identified directly and suitable offers to be generated according to cross-selling. The advantage: the end customers is offered only what they truly need. This real-time data also offers informative value when it comes to the future visitor or customer interactions. As the web is increasingly serving as the primary point of contact for research, it provides the very first data on the interests and intentions of users.
Omni-channel dashboard: benefits for B2B and B2C
Mimacom works with innovative technology partners to provide optimal support for both B2B and B2C customers. The e-commerce portal of Liferay, combined with technologies such as Kafka and Elasticsearch, offer an integral platform for a range of different needs. The advantages speak for themselves:
Centralization: The platform merges data from different sources into one omni-channel dashboard. There is no need to check different systems.
Independence: It’s not necessary to rely on third parties to view data. A significant simplification of processes.
Quality: Information is prepared in a much higher quality in the dashboard (including graphs), which makes further processing faster and easier.
Speed: The data processing speed of Elasticsearch enables data deliveries within seconds.
Viewing detailed graphs also makes it possible to observe the behavior of the actual systems and continue to develop them further. Processes can also be automated in real time by implementing modern workflow engines, making it possible to provide, for example, customized offers in real time. Real-time data not only makes it easier to get to know customers and optimize sales strategies, but also saves time and money for retailers.
Liferay Commerce: data from the purchase process provides valuable information
The high integration capability of Liferay Commerce makes it suitable for complex use cases. Real-time data supports the entire customer lifecycle.
Comprehensive sales information, including purchase location and amount, number of items, and much more
From purchase decision to payment, access to real-time data on product preferences, budget, and purchase quantity
KPIs provide additional information such as top-selling locations or the time of day
Real-time overview of total sales and information on sales targets achieved and actions required
Information on average purchase volume and amounts
Visualization of loyalty cards to view consumer information at a glance
Current figures show: real-time data improves the user experience The field of real-time data processing and the derivation of measures is an exciting one for our customers. Today, real-time data already offers a wide range of opportunities, which is why retailers and suppliers are constantly improving the way in which the customers perceive them – meaning the customer experience. Satisfaction with online retailing is consequently high. Of those surveyed, 95 percent said they were (very) satisfied with their online purchases. This high level should be maintained and further developed.
There are many good reasons for expanding business to an e-commerce platform. Trends, shopping behavior or even the location with the highest sales can be viewed directly on the basis of real-time data. If conceived well, this will expand your own target group into valuable customers.
Located in Stuttgart, Germany, Tim is our local German CEO and CRO for the global Mimacom company. He is a passionate leader with a focus on Sales and Marketing.