News – eCommerce and Digitization Grows For Many Businesses Says Alibaba B2B SurveyRamon Ray
Selling online is not new. eCommerce platforms such as eBay (founded in 1995), Shopify (founded in 2006), , Big Commerce (founded in 2009) and more have been around for years. Of course all the social platforms are moving to make selling online even easier from within their platforms.
The recent Alibaba B2B SMB Survey highlights that many small businesses are still relatively new to selling online and the past 2 years have been their first serious forway into e-commerce.
In addition to selling online, many are also upping their overall operations to make them more digitized.
Hard Times Bring Innovation
While hard times and a distressed economy are not good, these times force us to re-evaluate our businesses.
The pandemic and wars bring new challenges for businesses AND for leaders to constantly innovate and evolve.
All businesses were forced to re-look at their operations and see how they could pivot to react to and support their customers in a new environment.
For many, they knew they had to “sell online” and adapt to better e-commerce solutions and strategies.
However, the pandemic has forced them to move fast and with more purpose. Furthermore, many are re-looking at their suppliers, their supply chain, and even new market opportunities, including global expansion.
From the Alibaba B2B SMB Survey
Results from the latest survey of 2,401 U.S. SMBs conducting B2B business found nearly three-quarters (74%) are optimistic about the economy, which surpassed the pre-pandemic level of 62%, despite the current supply chain, inflation and labor market challenges.
Many are also expanding their digital commerce and exploring international channels: about half (47%) of U.S. B2B SMB trade is now through ecommerce, a nearly 12 percentage point jump in two years, and 70% of SMBs are conducting international B2B trade, compared to 59% in December 2019.
Digitized SMBs far outperformed businesses that are still operating offline in terms of sales and sourcing: 61% of digitized businesses saw increases in sales in 2021, compared to just 34% of those who are not online.
Digitized SMBs are expected to invest more in growth in 2022: Digitized businesses are more likely than non-digitized businesses to make investments in 2022, including hiring more full-time employees (48% vs. 32%) and increasing capital expenditures (49% vs. 33%).
Digitized businesses are better equipped to go global: 39% of digitized businesses expect to grow exports in 2022, versus just 13% of those who rely on offline channels.
Digitized SMBs are significantly more confident about the future of their own business: 91% of digitized businesses are confident in the future of their business, compared to 80% of non-digitized businesses.