What Is B2B?

Business-to-business, or B2B as it's more commonly referred to, is a market focus where a company's products or services are marketed at and sold to other businesses, as opposed to being marketed at and sold to consumers, which is commonly referred to as business-to-consumers or B2C.

FedEx is a great example of a B2B company. The delivery service offers companies and other business entities a fast, affordable way to ship products to consumers. Though end consumers interact with them, FedEx's clients are actually businesses.

Recently, B2B commerce is shifting from offline to online, as three in five respondents of a recent survey say. This is likely because virtually all (97%) B2B retailers currently sell products and services online.

This shift doesn't come easily, though. Nearly half (46%) of the aforementioned survey's respondents said it was difficult to bring their clients online. Just over half (54%) of B2B retailers said part of the challenge was creating a user-friendly interface and translating offline processes to online ones.

Despite the difficulties, though, many B2B companies feel that the shift is not only necessary, but advantageous. Nearly half (44%) of B2B retailers said that the shift could improve customer retention and loyalty, and another 44% said that it could pull offline sales online.