Web marketing for Business to Business markets

Business to Business commerce is business purchases between commercial entities as an in-between process of value addition until the product is delivered to the consumer.


One aspect of Business to Business markets that are different from Business to Consumer markets is that there are typically fewer customers, which makes the existence of suppliers well known. This implies that B2C approaches of promoting and advertising, such as banner advertising or listing in search engines becomes less important for B2B markets. Also, the existence of larger buyers is likely to imply that each is of great value to the supplier. The supplier therefore needs to understand the buyer's needs from the web site and will put effort into developing the Web-based content and services necessary to deliver these services.

There are three main types of organisational markets, industrial, reseller, and government. It is important to understand the underlying differences in terms of the goods and services involved.

  • Industrial markets – Industrial company web sites can be used to provide buyers with a high level of specific product information. To provide potential and existing clients with information, each manufacturer will publish information about new contracts, new products and testimonials from existing customers. The web provides a means of finding such information more rapidly and tends to give greater depth of information than other sources.
  • Reseller Markets – Organisations in these markets buy products and services in order to resell them. A reseller, who is selling products from many companies, may have sufficient aggregated demand (through selling products for other companies) to justify the expenditure of setting up online sales. The manufacturer may also not have the infrastructure to fulfil orders direct to customers without further investment, whereas the reseller will be set up for this already.
  • Government markets – These consists out of government agencies and bodies that buy goods and services that are required to carry out specific functions and provide particular services. Often, government purchasing requirements exceed those of large private commercial organisations.

Business to Business markets is essentially different than Business to Consumer markets. Typically, margins in B2B transactions are much narrower with much larger volumes. While brand in the anonymous international world of the Internet has become very important in B2C markets as a product differentiator, B2B is of a different nature. B2B buyers, most of the time, are professional purchasing agents and have substantive competency and resources to dedicate to product selection. Consequently, while still important in the B2B arena, brand is less of a factor than in the B2C domain.


Business to Business Markets can be classified as vertical and horizontal markets. Vertical markets focus on one industry and provide an environment for not only transactions but for job postings, industry news, technical advice, and other information services. Horizontal markets offer one type of service or product across industries, benefiting form less industry specialisation and more economies of scale.