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EProcurement 101: A Comprehensive Guide for B2B Suppliers

Learn about the fastest growing B2B channel, eProcurement, and how to drive online business growth by integrating eCommerce and eProcurement spend management systems to provide PunchOut catalogs and automate business transactions.

eproblogimg.pngWhy is it important for B2B suppliers to understand eProcurement? Many suppliers have never logged into or even seen an eProcurement system. It’s understandable on the surface why it might be hard for a supplier to realize how the eProcurement channel will drive value for their business. Suppliers know eProcurement helps their customers control spending, which might sound like a bad thing for the person selling the products. The truth is very much the opposite.

EProcurement is the fastest growing B2B sales channel, increasing 37% annually, surpassing even the growth of direct B2B commerce. With 8 out of 10 procurement managers choosing a supplier with “excellent” eCommerce and portal capability, if a supplier cannot support the way their B2B buyers want to purchase, they risk losing out on a significant portion of their potential revenue to a competitor that can.

If suppliers understand and leverage the eProcurement channel, they can gain a significant competitive advantage. Here are three ways understanding eProcurement as a strategic initiative can enhance business value for B2B suppliers.

Become a Preferred Supplier

We’ve established that eProcurement is important to B2B buyers and that eProcurement systems control spend. If a supplier can integrate with their buyer’s eProcurement system, they can provide the fastest, easiest way for buyers to purchase with PunchOut Catalogs. When the most convenient way to purchase is also the method management prefers, suppliers will win. B2B suppliers that can help enforce the internal processes and approvals of their buyers will be selected as preferred suppliers. They will also become extremely desirable to other buyers with similar requirements.

Accelerate the Sales Cycle

Suppliers that understand eProcurement also understand the value of automating procure-to-pay processes. The value of integrating with buyer eProcurement systems does not end with PunchOut catalogs. Traditional procurement is filled with human intervention, which means the majority of the procure-to-pay process was time spent waiting on a person to do something. This could be waiting for a person to see an email, approve a requisition, send a purchase order, see a confirmation, and so on. 

When seller eCommerce platforms and buyer eProcurement systems have an open line of communication, electronic documents such as purchase orders, order confirmations, shipping notices, and invoices can all be automated. This significantly speeds up the sales cycle, meaning buyers get their products faster, and sellers get paid faster too.

Lower Cost to Serve Customer 

Selling more at a faster rate sounds great, but what if a supplier could sell more, at a faster rate, with lower internal costs to serve customers? Suppliers that understand how to leverage the eProcurement channel by integrating with buyer eProcurement systems greatly reduce human hours required to support sales and order fulfillment. They also eliminated manual data entry and the resulting errors that cost companies millions every year.

This article has summarized some of the major benefits of eProcurement for B2B suppliers, but has only scratched the surface of what suppliers really need to know to leverage the B2B eProcurement channel to drive online business growth.

Download the free eBook: eProcurement 101 for B2B Suppliers for a comprehensive look at the eProcurement market and strategies to leverage to drive business value. For more information on how PunchOut2Go helps suppliers integrate eCommerce with buyer eProcurement systems, fill out the form below, and we’ll connect with you shortly.

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