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Posted by Peter Sheldon on October 7, 2013
Today, we released our inaugural Forrester Wave evaluation of B2B commerce suites. In a sister blog post, my colleague Andy Hoar, with whom I coauthored this report, explains why client demand for this research has exploded over the past 12 months, with manufacturers and distributors grappling with how to better serve their sales channels through digital experiences. In writing this report, Andy and I have spent the past six months evaluating the B2B commerce capabilities of dozens of vendors. Despite casting the net wide, our research found that although it’s common for vendors to provide “B2B lite” functionality for their clients — such as supporting unique pricing for employees — only a subset of the broader commerce platform vendor community can truly cater for complex B2B business models with support for distributors, resellers, partner networks, employees, retail stores, and direct B2C all from a single platform. To differentiate the wannabes from the bona fide leaders, Forrester rejigged its established B2C commerce suite scoring criteria to emphasize:
The High-Level Findings From Our Evaluation:
So, Which Solution Is Right For You?
Picking the right vendor to support your growing B2B commerce channel is not a task to be taken lightly. The goal of our research is to help our clients identify the solutions in the marketplace that can truly support their unique and often complex needs when running B2B commerce sites across brands, divisions, and markets. It is important to remember that this research is intended to be a starting point only. Andy and I encourage clients to review the detailed product evaluations and adapt the criteria weightings to fit their individual needs through the Forrester Wave's Excel-based vendor comparison tool. We also encourage clients to leverage their Inquiry access to learn more before embarking on a selection process.