B2B customer portals require complex pricing rules and integration with customer records, among other things, to provide tailored shopping experiences clients desire.
Even though pricing is a primary touchpoint of any eCommerce transaction, there are still large capability gaps in price and discount structures. In a survey of more than 1,700 B2B companies, Bain & Company found that roughly 85% of respondents believed their pricing decisions could improve.
In this post we will cover how pricing integration between front and back-end systems can help B2B organizations advance their complex pricing strategy.
The intricacies of pricing in B2B eCommerce
B2B customers desire a transparent shopping experience that shows them the right price based on their contract and agreed upon discounts so they can continue with the purchasing process. A seamless check-out experience tailored to each individual business helps clients down the sales funnel and can even improve an organization’s overall performance.
Harvard Business Review found that top-performing B2B companies exceeded their peers in three key areas of pricing. The greatest differentiator was that companies with the largest market share employed “truly tailored pricing at the individual customer and product level.”
Presenting different prices to selected customers may sound complicated, but it’s not with the correct complex pricing integration.
What is complex pricing?
One price does not fit all in the modern shopping landscape. Depending on the customer, quantities and shipping, prices can vary – but how do you convey different pricing to consumers without overwhelming them with choices and complicated account criteria? The answer is complex pricing.
Complex pricing allows businesses to set different prices depending on a customer’s details. For example, most companies offer a retail price and a wholesale price for items regardless of volume. On a simple level, different customers can be created so when they sign in to shop they are presented with the price corresponding to their needs.
For businesses juggling different clientele and discounts, they may need even more complex pricing. In this scenario, companies can tier customers into different groups, assigning a unique pricing to each. When the customer enters their account, they will be shown the price based on their assignment. The same can be done for discount codes.
Other factors that can potentially drive complex pricing include the:
- Customer ship to location
- Ship from location
- Volume discounts
- Family discounts
Statics pricing does not take these criteria into consideration, and businesses can lose out on strategically changing their pricing to appeal to different customers.
The importance of ERP and eCommerce pricing integration
ERP and eCommerce systems work tirelessly behind the scenes to help manage a business’ online presence, but are often treated as two separate entities.
When it comes to pricing, most of the crucial information on SKUs and costs are handled by a business’ ERP system. Having this information organized and on hand is helpful, but it’s not customer facing. Instead, consumers will be interacting with a company’s eCommerce platform to view crucial product information and, hopefully, complete a purchase.
An eCommerce platform must be flexible and integrated with an organization’s ERP to support complex pricing and provide users with the most accurate retail experience. Unifying ERP and eCommerce systems can help companies create a seamless workflow between back of house operations and the customer experience.
When ERP and eCommerce are integrated, businesses can begin to create more complex tiered pricing to show the correct consumer the right place when they need it. Accurate product pricing will always be displayed depending on the customer, shipping and quantity – no more manually updating product display pages.
An integrated system means customers are receiving the most accurate and personalized pricing information to help them with their purchasing decision. It also gives businesses the freedom to tier their pricing and discounts to certain customers to manage their sales. Integration takes away the burden of manually updating each system while providing customers with a seamless shopping experience.
How pricing works with erpCommerce™
With access to subject matter expertise within our sister company Net at Work, Pixafy’s erpCommerce™ solution was created with ERP as the core value add. For B2B enterprises beginning their eCommerce journey, pricing in our default format can be a great start to optimizing their online presence.
All pricing is set in the ERP system, in our case, Sage X3. By default, erpCommerce™ does not show customer-specific pricing while browsing because it can vary based on volume and shipping. For this reason, a final price will be received from Boomi/Sage once the quantity, shipping and customer information is set in the cart.
If an item does not exist in Sage, the default Magento price will be used instead. In this scenario, a customer will be alerted to this change and given the direction to either continue with their purchase or remove the items from their order. Orders containing these items would then go back into a dedicated status determined by a configuration so that they are not automatically sent to Sage with the default pricing on them.
On the front end, the Product Listing Page and Product Display Page will display a message to customers stating: “Add to Cart to View YOUR Price.” There is the ability to change this and display pricing on pages if products are simply priced by their SKU level.
While these are mostly default options, erpCommerce™ is a highly extendable and flexible solution. Enterprises can create their own tiers and customer groups and define what pricing and/or discounts they receive. Additional features can allow customers to request pricing on certain products or add a quantity selector to the Product Display Page that updates pricing when set.
Connect with us today
If you’re ready to optimize your online pricing, the experts at Pixafy are here to help. Before any integration we will invest time into discussing your company’s business processes to provide you with the right solution. Our unique erpCommerce™ solution can work with additional ERP systems depending on your needs.
Contact us today with any questions you may have about pricing or to learn more about our erpCommerce™ solution.
Check back soon for our next installment in our Standard Touchpoint Series to learn about inventory integration.