There have long been disagreements within the industry regarding the perishability of fast-moving consumer products and their short life cycles. Even under the best-case scenario, when customers could be serviced quickly, and goods were made on time, balancing complex logistics with consumer demands was challenging.
As a result, the sector's dependence on the FMCG B2B marketplace has increased. The forecasts made by Nielsen & Company that worldwide FMCG eCommerce sales will reach $400 billion by 2022 were correct. Yet, this was trending before COVID-19, which required a more significant proportion of businesses to go digital.
FMCG companies are adjusting their strategies in response to changing market conditions and geographies. Industry giants are selling directly to consumers rather than using Amazon's eCommerce platform. Consumers of Ben & Jerry's can have ice cream delivered to their homes, while customers of Kraft Heinz may buy directly via Heinz to Home.
B2B and business-to-consumer trade via the Internet is no longer a fad but rather the new normal. ShipBob's statistical monitoring of eCommerce trends may be used to track the course of events, beginning with the onset of the pandemic, and you can see that food and beverage items have continuously risen in general popularity. The same holds for beauty products, personal care items, and other consumer packaged goods as it does for food and drinks.
COVID-19's Impact on The Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) Sector
The pandemic wreaked havoc on fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies. Restaurants were forced to close, and consumers began to rely more on home-cooked meals and mealtimes. In New York City, almost 1,000 restaurants have been permanently shuttered. Since then, supermarkets have improved their capacity to combine eCommerce with delivery.
In continuous upheaval, consumer goods companies have been compelled to alter their products and seek out new partners. Unilever, for example, has partnered with Oyo to offer hygiene kits. Not only that, but FMCG companies also have to cope with an ever-changing supply chain, frequent disruptions, and a fickle buying public. This is a catastrophe waiting to happen. This demonstrates how FMCG eCommerce can help businesses adapt to their new normal.
Changes in Consumer Behavior
Cooking at home is becoming more popular, and individuals spend more time doing it. In the United Kingdom, online food sales have risen by 75%. As a result, creating digital shelf space is more accessible than acquiring it in a conventional store. FMCG companies may use headless architecture to focus on direct-to-consumer sales while supporting their wholesalers' eCommerce platforms.
Consumption Habits Are Evolving
People purchased items to escape dread during the early stages of the pandemic. In 2020, forecasters predicted a 5.2 percent global GDP decrease, while experts predicted a 6.7 percent loss. Recessions in the previous ten years have lasted an average of 18 months. In this case, the economy has altered quickly and dramatically. Consumer confidence has already been harmed since many are expecting or have already experienced a decrease in income. Still, using B2B marketplaces, FMCG companies can quickly scale up and down.
Supply chain disruptions and fluctuating commodity prices add to production planning, manufacturing, and pricing complexity. The destruction wrought by the August 10 Derecho storm will further restrict Iowa's maize, soybean, and commodity supply since more than 30% of the state's crops were destroyed. Prices may rise, forcing some to reduce production. Nonetheless, it’s vital not to disappoint your consumers. Before they place an order, make sure they are aware of the current inventory. Fortunately, eCommerce allows you to view everything you have for sale.
Buying Habits Are Changing
In 2018, online sales of FMCG products increased by just 20%. In a year, online sales increased sevenfold, compared to a two percent increase across the FMCG sector. As a consequence, online shopping is becoming more popular. In addition, the aim today is to leverage physical brand loyalty to motivate online purchases. eCommerce is more crucial than ever, as more and more retail and corporate consumers choose to shop via digital channels.
An Increasingly Regulated Environment
In the United States, 50 different sets of operational rules and standards must be observed. The handbook explains how to properly operate a loading dock as well as the fundamentals of business management. The usage of eCommerce may make logistics easier.
FMCG B2B Marketplaces Provide Much More Than Increased Revenue
Many B2B transactions were moved to the Internet due to the CODV-19 pandemic, as well as a change to a business-to-consumer distribution mechanism. Invariably, eCommerce can do a lot more than take orders when it comes to online sales. FMCG companies may use this strategy to respond to current and future market issues. It also provides FMCG manufacturers, wholesalers, and distributors with more flexibility and data.
Firms in the FMCG industry must be able to:
- Increase agility
- Change between business models for B2B and business-to-consumer situations, as well as those that combine the two.
- Have fresh merchandise on hand when consumers need it.
- Face the company's constantly shifting supply chain and logistics challenges.
- Ascertain that the expectations of consumers are fulfilled or surpassed.
The following scenarios also need accurate data:
- B2B customer purchasing habits
- New product and service market expansion
- The number of suppliers is growing, as is their geographic dispersion.
- Getting the most incredible product and message delivery for the best scenario possible.
- On a case-by-case basis, increasing the per-order pricing
Choose The Best Platform for Your FMCG B2B Marketplace
B2B marketplaces are growing increasingly popular among company leaders due to the many advantages offered. First and foremost, convenience, as well as central payment options and flexibility, are significant advantages. According to Gartner, 70 percent of commercial transactions will be B2B by 2023. There are many factors at play.
It doesn't matter whether you're thinking about autonomous operations, vertical markets, or horizontal marketplaces when it comes to starting a business. You'll need a well-designed marketplace to sell your goods. When searching for a B2B marketplace, it's vital to seek a platform with a wide range of capabilities.
Undoubtedly, businesses must be enticed to join B2B markets by providing valuable services. Customers and vendors have varied needs, and FMCG sellers want to be able to customize the customer experience. As a result, companies must make timely and secure payments, which involves buying products from various vendors.
By improving the user experience, you may attract additional B2B marketplace suppliers. Merchandisers would want to see a retail setting with price tables, product catalogs, and a variety of customization possibilities. B2B vendors also want the ability to automate quote generation.
Customers in the B2B sector also want a simple buying experience that allows them to buy from many providers at once, manage returns quickly, and keep their data organized. Further, B2B buyers want to see a structure that corresponds to their company's internal organization.
Take Time to Evaluate The Seven Most Widely-Used B2B Marketplace Platforms for FMCG
There are few players in the B2B marketplaces since they are still emerging. Frequently, organizations looking for a solution to manage an eCommerce site are looking for a platform that can handle both the front-end and back-end. These are the top seven B2B markets to consider if you're searching for a B2B marketplace:
Mirakl focuses on the back-end of B2B and B2C marketplaces, but not the front-end. They have an advantage since they have pre-built APIs and links to the front-end buying experience. Salesforce, SAP Commerce Cloud, and Magento are just a few of Mirakl's corporate connection choices. They also offer operators and sellers product administration and reporting, data tools, and monitoring.
IZBERG is a popular choice for companies looking to expand their presence in the EU. IZBERG, like Mirakl, is a platform that only enables back-end commerce via linking companies using APIs. IZBERG may be utilized in the B2B or B2C arena, in addition to the B2B and business-to-consumer sectors. Invoicing, payments, and other B2B (B2B) needs are all handled by them. The benefit of IZBERG is that it can support both physical and digital products and services.
AppDirect, unlike IZBERG and Miraki, offers both front-end and back-end functionality. AppDirect places a strong emphasis on digital services. Another benefit of AppDirect is its ability to connect to third-party goods through API. AppDirect began as a download site for applications, but it now offers almost any digital goods. In terms of helping and controlling merchants' products, AppDirect is the industry leader. AppDirect also provides customers with user-friendly apps.
OroCommerce was created to address the requirements of companies that do commerce with other enterprises. Oro allows FMCG companies to manage many eCommerce sites from a single control panel. Oro also supports B2B2B, B2X, and B2C transactions, as well as any additional transactions you can imagine.
Further, Oro includes a customer relationship management (CRM) system for suppliers and operators, in addition to the aforementioned platform. Oro offers comprehensive reporting and workflow features. Moreover, Oro is open source, but it also has a scalable API and a third-party integration capability. Without question, the Oro marketplace platform is the most well-known B2B solution on our list.
Marketplacer can handle both consumer and B2B transactions. The market is first and foremost a vendor hub and a gateway for operators. In addition, the software includes separate front-end and back-end modules that may be used to book events and services and receive digital products. It's also compatible with Magento, Shopify, WooCommerce, and other eCommerce platforms.
Omnify is an expert in the field of online retail. Controlling product, service, and reservation systems, as well as B2B and business-to-consumer interactions. Omnify is compatible with Shopify, Magento, and SAP in addition to WordPress. They also handle product and vendor evaluations and quotation creation and therefore offer a highly valuable service.
The fact that Spryker has a higher-than-average number of active B2B and B2C eCommerce licensees demonstrates its strength. They may get access to new markets by using their PaaS marketplace solution. You can utilize the Spryker platform even if you don't already have a Spryker eCommerce site.
The marketplace at Spryker is built on a headless architecture that allows for front-end flexibility, administrative management, and essential onboarding features. Spryker also allows several sellers to sell the same items with the same UPC numbers, as well as auction-style business models.
Without a doubt, B2B purchasing is increasingly shifting online. B2B FMCG suppliers that respond quickly may acquire an advantage over their rivals and claim first-mover designation. Those who hesitate may find themselves irreversibly behind in a relatively short time.