The evolvement of technology has changed how businesses operate, and today it allows companies to be more transparent in their dealings and offers better reach. And a specific industry that went through a massive transformation from person-to-person to online business is the B2B industry. This article discusses many aspects of the B2B marketplace app development, B2B businesses, how it is helpful to bridge the gaps between business wholesalers, vendors, manufacturers, and retailers, how to create an eCommerce B2B app, and more. But first, let’s understand B2B Marketplace App and B2B eCommerce.
- What is B2B eCommerce?
- What is B2B eCommerce Marketplace app?
- Udaan – Leading B2B Marketplace App in India
- What Is The Difference Between B2B And B2C Ecommerce Apps?
- What Are The Types Of B2B Mobile Apps?
- What Are The Benefits Of B2B Marketplace Apps For Buyers & Suppliers?
- Why Build a B2B Marketplace App – Market-size & Industry Stats
- Here are The Leading eCommerce Markets Across the Globe:
- Top B2B Marketplace Mobile Applications Across the World
- Essential Features – B2B Marketplace App Development
- Advanced Features – B2B Marketplace App Development
- Build B2B Mobile App With Smooth eCommerce Operations like Udaan
- How to create B2B eCommerce Marketplace App like Udaan?
- What Tech Stack Is Required To Create A B2B Ecommerce Mobile App?
- Required Team Structure – B2B Marketplace App Development
- How Much Does It Cost To Create A B2B Marketplace Mobile App?
What is B2B eCommerce?
B2B eCommerce is an online transaction between two business parties. To put it simply, a company selling products/services to another company that is its customer – is carrying out a B2B transaction. B2B businesses can come in several sizes and shapes. They can span many business models and sectors, ranging from services like legal, accounting, and digital to physical products like equipment, machinery, consumer goods, etc. The worldwide digital commerce market is valued at a whopping six times the B2C market.
What is B2B eCommerce Marketplace app?
With the arrival of B2B e-commerce mobile apps came a revolution of sorts in the eCommerce world, as it allows people to do all their business dealings virtually from anywhere across the globe. The apps do business on a person’s behalf; hence the physical presence of a person is hardly a concern. These apps are primarily compatible with iOS and Android and work well across platforms. Today B2B marketplace apps are massively used as most people prefer making purchases online through their devices. B2B marketplace apps like Udaan make buyers and sellers much more efficient, and this process saves lots of time for sellers and buyers.
In the case of a physical marketplace, one business sells its products to other companies. Similarly, the B2B marketplace apps have taken it online, digitalizing the same process in the form of apps. So the companies can make regular clients on these apps and do the dealings online. One such B2B online marketplace app is India’s Udaan.
Udaan – Leading B2B Marketplace App in India
Udaan is an app connecting manufacturers, wholesalers, merchants, and vendors with small-scale business owners across India. Hence, businesses get easy access to products at a wholesale rate by using the app. This way, Udaan is an ultimate solution to all the B2 B-related issues as the platform successfully bridges the gap between manufacturers and retailers. This app solution works flawlessly on iOS and Android platforms, and users can also use its web version. It offers the best services to its users at the most nominal rates.
It was in 2016 that the former employees of Flipkart, Sujeet Kumar, Vaibhav Gupta, and Amod Malviya, created this brilliant app. Initially, it was a small-scale app mainly focused on logistics. However, it gained instant popularity in the first few months and soon received funding of $585 million from various investors keen on the idea. Until 2019, Udaan’s value was almost 2.8 billion, with the top investors being GGV Capital, Hillhouse Capital, Footpath Ventures, Altimeter Capital, Tencent, etc.
This platform has three registered offices in India, with its headquarters in Bengaluru and two other offices in New Delhi and Gurugram.
What Is The Difference Between B2B And B2C Ecommerce Apps?
For long B2C apps have reigned the mobile market, and this is why before you start creating a B2B app, it is vital to get a clear understanding of the differences. After all, both the concept of B2C and B2C eCommerce apps is entirely different. That being said, business-to-business software can learn something from B2C apps, like a focus on user experience and user interface. It is noticed that many B2B businesses neglect this aspect. Let’s talk about the critical differences between B2C and B2B:
It is all about the ‘Focus’: Keep the focus in mind as you develop a B2B app. In this respect, B2C apps can be very different from B2B apps. B2C apps focus on market share and downloads, whereas B2B mobile app strategy should be focused on earning user loyalty. What matters with B2B apps is the user lifetime value, focusing on keeping the existing clients over attracting new ones. In B2B app, brand awareness and marketing strategies are also important. However, the emphasis should be on how many unique users stay on the platform, predicting revenue and future growth.
Different Meanings of Success: For a B2C product, success is about attracting new users, and it is done by keeping the prices lower than the market average. This way, the apps gain a new audience. It is challenging to get B2C users to pay as many free products are on the market. However, constant updates and new features help B2C apps keep their users. On the other hand, for B2B products, success is about an optimized experience and added value. Typically, B2B apps do not offer lower prices to attract business, as often companies aren’t concerned about the price difference; they instead want a product that makes their work a lot easier. B2B apps can attain great success by offering a great user experience and ensuring that it corresponds well to the business objectives of target clients.
Challenges: Even the challenges are different for B2B and B2C apps, as the problem B2C apps face is keeping the existing users owing to the competition. BusinessofApps reports that users spend 95% of their time in the top 10 apps on their phone and end up uninstalling most apps after installing without even opening those apps. Attaining quick traction is another challenge they face, and without that, there may be no downloads and fear of the app getting lost in the ocean of apps. For the B2B apps, however, the problem is much higher standards. B2B entrepreneur can’t make an MVP in one month and release it quickly to Android and Apple app markets. Instead, the B2B products are rather large and complex. Hence, they require huge investments at the very beginning. Another huge problem is getting first users. The B2B app development market is less dynamic than the B2C market, and it gets difficult for businesses to shift to other products when they already have something that works with their system.
Their significant advantages: B2C and B2B apps have their benefits, like in the case of B2C apps, they are faster to launch as the bar for entry is lower; hence, getting the downloads and getting the first users is much easier. Whereas B2B apps have more prospects regarding stable revenue, the size and frequency of purchases are way larger regardless of fewer users.
What Are The Types Of B2B Mobile Apps?
Before the eCommerce marketplace app development Here we discuss the many types of B2B apps:
B2B eCommerce apps: The same as B2C m-Commerce products, B2B eCommerce apps are crafted to sell products to customers; however, the customers are other businesses. Hence, instead of sending partners large Excel spreadsheets with products & prices and later engaging in tiresome email exchanges to take and process the orders, nowadays, businesses understand the importance of providing their partners with the same level of service from B2C eCommerce apps. This level of service is successful through Product listings, Convenient navigation, Category trees, Delivery statuses, Push notifications, Order management, easy checkout & payments, ability to order additional services. One prominent example of eCommerce B2B apps is Alibaba, a marketplace offering millions of products, from home appliances and equipment to heavy machinery.
B2B apps for Internal Operation: Apps for internal operations allow businesses to manage internal processes & procedures and also facilitate communication between departments and employees. There are many products for internal operations, like CRMs, financial management tools, corporate messengers, and many others. For instance, the Slack app is a corporate messenger that enables employees to communicate and exchange files. It’s a tool for teamwork that allows users to create topics, projects, and much more to ensure accessible and organized communication.
B2B app for work process facilitation: This type of B2B app serves tools that employees can use to make their tasks more accessible and productive. For every business, the relevant agencies will be different. For instance, warehouse workers can use software for inventory management, and delivery workers can use an app for locating delivery addresses and changing delivery statuses. Company HRs can also have their software for employee management that allows for tracking employees and managing qualifications. Often workers use products from Google or Microsoft to facilitate their work, and several large companies choose to create their software to streamline internal work processes.
External Management: This kind of B2B app help businesses in coordinating vendors, managing supply chains, and facilitating communication between different actors. The tools contain project management apps, CRMs, and online conferencing apps. One such example is Jira, which helps users manage projects, plan deadlines, assign tasks, and track their progress.
What Are The Benefits Of B2B Marketplace Apps For Buyers & Suppliers?
App Provides Easy Access to Buyers & Salesman: The B2B eCommerce mobile apps provide easy access to buyers and salesman. This way, the business processes take place smoothly.
Increased Business opportunities: The B2B eCommerce mobile search engines allow clients/resellers to connect with your business and look for wholesalers and manufacturers in the area. This boosts business opportunities as they are people who deal in the same products that can be purchased and sold once a deal takes place. With the help of targeted content, a user can get the attention of new clients.
Higher & Better B2B: Imagine you already have a physical market presence; as you launch a mobile app, its visibility will also increase. Many renowned brands offer different paths to customers to reach out to them and purchase products from various channels. These multiple sales channels, such as a physical store, a mobile app, and a website, increase sales engagement.
Enhance Efficiency: B2B purchasers do not require the attractive cost; they need their purchasing experience to be easy and quick. And the features offered by B2B mobile apps, like in-store standardized identification scanners, spared buy information, post installments, notification messages with in-stock items, and other efficient devices, make things much simpler for B2B purchases. They have all the data needed for rehash buys in just one B2B mobile app.
Scope to reach new markets: The B2B eCommerce mobile apps allow businesses to make new customers in new markets and also expand in the existing market. It’s an online portal accessible to people worldwide 24×7 all through the year. It even allows to set up an international customer base by setting up a business on these apps.
Increased Brand Awareness: An eCommerce mobile app allows you to increase your reach tremendously. It is excellent when businesses have an eCommerce website. However, an additional platform will enable them to reach out to a new segment of customers and result in increased brand awareness. It is also an accessible medium to reach out to the target customers.
Earn Customer Loyalty & Repeat Sales: Compared to B2C, where client beat is a crucial part of working together, B2B brands depend on standard buys to endure & flourish. And people return to a versatile mobile app 2x quicker within 30 days than a mobile website. At the same time, they also burn through 27% more per session. The reason for the same is with mobile apps, clients are constantly reminded of your business, as each time they check their phone (which research states are up to 200 times an average person checks their phone), they see your app logo on their home screen. At the same time, there are powerful notification messages that remind B2B purchasers of your business and new items in stock.
Also Read – B2B-B2C Marketplace App Development
Why Build a B2B Marketplace App – Market-size & Industry Stats
For long B2B marketplace apps have been in great demand, and many new apps are being constantly introduced in the market. The apps allow to reach potential customers more effectively and generate huge profits. This is why more and more businesses are creating them, and they are on the rise.
Users today are savvy and look for more information on a product on their phones before purchasing it.
- Hence about 93% of B2B users make online purchases.
- 73% of the total number of app users look up on the internet to check a product’s price.
- 56% of businesses will likely make half of their purchases online.
- The global B2B eCommerce market valuing US$14.9 trillion in 2020 is over 5 times that of the B2C market
Here are The Leading eCommerce Markets Across the Globe:
China – USD 2,779.31 billion
JD.com: 114.3 billion
Alibaba: USD 109.480 billion
Tencent: USD 73.56 billion
Baidu: USD 16.4 billion
Vipshop: USD 15.61 billion
United States of America – USD 794.5 billion
Amazon: USD 367.19 billion
Walmart: USD 64.62 billion
eBay: USD 38.67 billion
Apple: USD 33.62 billion
Best Buy: USD 20.34 billion
United Kingdom – USD 180.39 billion
Amazon: USD 14.67.19 billion
Tesco: USD 7.59 billion
Argos: USD 5.41 billion
Sainsburys: USD 4.55 billion
Currys: USD 4.14 billion
Japan – USD 141.26 billion
Amazon: USD 12.295 billion
Apple: USD 2.731 billion
Yodobashi: USD 2.581 billion
Monotaro: USD 1.356 billion
Zozotown: USD 1.136 billion
South Korea – USD 110.60 billion
Coupang: USD 10.882 billion
SSG: USD 1.412 billion
Yes24: USD 0.433 billion
GS Shop: USD 0.407 billion
Apple: USD 0.376 billion
Top B2B Marketplace Mobile Applications Across the World
Here are the B2B eCommerce apps performing well at the moment:
Alibaba: It is, in fact, the most popular wholesale eCommerce app with its products segregated in majorly 40 categories. As an international app, Alibaba allows cross-border trades & networking. This way, small-scale traders can take their business in different countries. Alibaba was founded in 1999, and today, its app serves 240 regions, including governments, and has more than 18 million buyers & sellers.
Udaan: Founded in 2016, Udaan is among the most extensive online wholesale B2B marketplace for retailers, distributors & brands. It is specifically designed for small & medium businesses around India and brings together traders, wholesalers, retailers, and manufacturers on one platform to make online trading easier. It has its headquarters in Bengaluru, with offices in the leading metro cities and major cities across India.
Global Sources: This app allows the users to discover and source from several Chinese and Worldwide B2B wholesale suppliers and manufacturers. It offers seamless sourcing within the app to its users. Its users can easily browse millions of new & innovative products from B2B verified suppliers, exports, and manufacturers across Asia and Greater China.
eWorld trade: It is among the fastest growing online wholesale B2B marketplace app integrated with innovative features specially created for traders to reach the global level and to set new milestones. They offer all the required functionalities to the buyers and sellers, helping them develop the voice of their business and help it expand across the world. It is a user-friendly portal that lets buyers quickly connect with the sellers.
Amazon Business: Counted amongst the biggest B2B platforms, Amazon allows people from even remotest villages to make their products available worldwide. It has an integrated payment platform enabling users to make payments in various modes.
Essential Features – B2B Marketplace App Development
Advanced Features – B2B Marketplace App Development
Push Notification: This is a valuable feature for B2B eCommerce app as it allows the business to constantly be in the mind of purchasers by sending alerts and notifications. It can be messages regarding new in-stock items or out-for-delivery items.
Social Login & Signup: It helps to have users registered with the app, so their information is saved in the back-end. It refrains users from entering information like payment information, delivery information, etc., repeatedly on the app. Users can sign up through social media accounts like Facebook, and the app will gather all the necessary information.
Document Scanner: The app often asks users to verify their identity by providing a document. For such instances, the app can have an in-built document scanner, so the users do not need to switch between apps.
In-App Chat & Calling: This feature offers a seamless experience to users by enabling them to make quick and free calls & chats. They need an internet connection to use this feature.
Marketing & Promotion Tool: This functionality allows users to market their products and increase sales by promoting them on the app.
AI-powered Chatbot: It is a crucial functionality that fills the gap for human presence as customer support. The artificial intelligence chatbot mimics a human and listens/reads to messages typed or said by users. It is equipped with information to be easily shared with users.
Efficient CRM-CMS: Customer Relationship Management and Content Management System are both essential aspects of any app, and the same goes with B2B eCommerce apps. This functionality efficiently manages customer relationships and content used in the app.
Real-Time Analytics: This functionality is handy for the app admin as it allows them to track the business processes and app progress in real-time. This way, necessary actions can be taken to enhance the app working in case required.
Build B2B Mobile App With Smooth eCommerce Operations like Udaan
Supply chain Management:
Inventory Management: The eCommerce marketplace app for Inventory Management will assist in tasks like barcoding, orders, pickup, packaging & shipping, inventory forecast, and replenishment & lot control.
Corporate Billing & Accounting: The app in this business category will help with invoices, managing expenses, estimations, assets, payrolls, taxes, accounting reports, and bank transactions.
eCommerce ERP Integration: In this category, the app will help with complex eCommerce workflows, pricing management, supply chain management, human resource management, and project management.
Product Information Management: In this type of business, the app will help to categorize and catalog products, compare products, product lifecycle management, and traceability.
Corporate Billing & Accounting: Here, the app helps in managing expenses, invoicing, assets, estimates, taxes, accounting reports, bank transactions, and payrolls.
eCommerce Document Management: In this aspect, the B2B eCommerce apps can be helpful with server-based & cloud DMS, real-time document co-authoring, real-time document, and sharing on all the devices.
Marketing & Sales Management: This category can benefit through B2B eCommerce apps in terms of CRM systems, customer analytics, reporting, multichannel marketing campaigns, and call centers.
Payment Solutions & Tools: For this section, B2B marketplace app help with payment gateways & portals, e-wallets, compliance, and payment security.
Logistics Management: In this aspect, the B2B eCommerce apps allow for trip & routing, cargo operations, tracking systems, fuel management, container management, and vehicle inspection.
How to create B2B eCommerce Marketplace App like Udaan?
Here are the steps you need to follow to develop a B2B marketplace app:
- Analyze the market well
- Find your niche
- Research your competitors and target audience
- Allocate a budget
- Plan out a marketing campaign
- Find a tremendous B2B marketplace app development team
- Craft a technical specification and get a detailed estimate of the project
- Create and release an MVP
- Look up the user feedback and make necessary changes.
What Tech Stack Is Required To Create A B2B Ecommerce Mobile App?
- Mobile app platform: Android, iOS
- Web Technology: DotNet, PHP, or eCommerce platform like Magento
- Cloud Environment & CDN: Cloudflare, Amazon
- Email marketing: Mail Chimp
- SMS, Phone Verification: Twilio, Nexmo
- Push Notification: Push.io, Twillo
- Payment Gateways: Braintree, Paypal, and more
- Real-time Analytics: Google Cloud Data Flow, Apache Storm
Required Team Structure – B2B Marketplace App Development
B2B marketplace app development like Udaan takes up a lot of time and effort, and the development of a great app requires the contribution of a great team, including:
- Project Management
- Android/iOS Mobile app developers
- Front-end developers
- Back-end developers
- UX/UI designers
- Business Analyst
- Quality Analysts
Begin Your B2B App Development with an MVP
As most organizations do, instead of rolling over a complete product you can release a minimum viable product that would be the prototype of your application. Thus instead of investing the team’s energy and efforts in something that is a bigger risk, prepare an MVP and see how exactly your application would look and function.
Let a few people from your team check the MVP model and the features and functioning. If all works well then you can roll over to build the real product and take it to the market for the launch.
Pay Attention to the UI/UX Designs
The book is often judged by its cover, especially on the digital platform. Make sure that the UI/UX Design team that you work with offers you amazing and interactive designs that can engage customers. Often a good idea is spoilt by a bad face. Most companies look forward to having an engaging interface for B2B companies to make navigation easier and sales higher.
Thus, another important element that you need to focus on when working on your B2B marketplace app development is how it looks and works.
How Much Does It Cost To Create A B2B Marketplace Mobile App?
Several factors determine the cost of B2B marketplace app development; they can be:
Choice of app development platform: When choosing a single platform to create an app, it costs less than developing it for both iOS and Android platforms.
App features: The number of features included in the app also affects the app pricing. The more features integrated into the app, the higher it will cost.
App Complexity: Another factor affecting the app cost is the complexity of the app. If the app is integrated with complex functionalities, it will cost more than a simple app.
Developer’s Geographical Location: It is known that the developers in USA and Europe tend to charge a lot more than the developers in India. The hourly development rates differ as per the region where the quality delivered is exact. Hence, businesses often choose developers from India owing to the excellent quality offered at reasonable prices.
Now speaking of an estimated b2b marketplace app development cost, it is sure to cost somewhere between $15000-$25000 to create an MVP B2B marketplace app like Udaan. However, if want to have a full fledge B2B e-commerce app integrated with industry top APIs then development-cost will go rise as high as $50000-$150000
B2B Marketplace App Development Partner – Make Right Choice
As you decide to build a B2B marketplace app for your business, you need a team that is well acquainted with the methodology and market proposition of your idea. Make sure you partner with an organization that holds experience in marketplace app development. Not sure how to find the right app development partner?
Here are some basic tips that you can follow to find the right app development partner for your marketplace business.
Ask for Referrals
You can connect with the previous clients of the organization and ask about their experiences personally. In case there is someone from your circle who can help it would be better instead of speaking to a complete stranger. Look for referrals before you decide to hire a team on your own.
Check for the Portfolio
Once you are sure about the design and features and other details of your project you would need a development team that would turn your idea into a working reality. Search for mobile app development teams and shortlist a few that can help.
Check the portfolio of the company and see if they have worked on similar projects. Also, check for the technology and the development methodology that the app development team uses.
Read Feedback and Review
Make sure to check for the feedback and review of the team you have chosen for your marketplace app development. You can see what the clients have to say on websites like Clutch and GoodFirms.
It is important that the client experience of the organization is good as it would reflect in the quality and timely delivery of your product. Also, if there would be some points of conflict you can clear them in advance and proceed with your functioning.
Consider the Location
Another significant thing that you need to take care of when looking for is the location of the development team. It would impact your budget and also the technology and work ethics. Sout-east Asia has become a hub of mobile app developers in recent years. If you hire a mobile app development team in India, you can get an amazing product at a competitive price.
In case there is a difference in the time zone between you and your team, simply ask them if they are comfortable working and communicating at odd times.
These are some basic yet effective ways to select the right development partner for your B2B marketplace.
Conclusion: The bar of entry for the B2B app market is much higher than for B2C apps, which is why they need more time for development. It is challenging for a B2B marketplace app to get its first users; however, once it gains traction, stay assured that it’ll bring in more revenue and regular orders compared to the B2C apps. And to ensure that the app users remain and become loyal customers, focus on app security, excellent user experience, faster issue resolution, reliability, and good architecture, as that is what makes an amazing B2B eCommerce app.