Digital investments a competitive advantage in B2B

Just before summer, we launched our survey Nordic Digital Commerce in B2B for the seventh year in a row. The study is based on responses from 920 people from Nordic companies and shows that the digitization of commerce within B2B continues to grow steadily, with clear advantages for both companies and customers.

- Companies that do not follow the digitization trend risk offering a bad customer experience and losing customers over time. The pandemic caused a sharp increase in digital investment in most industries. Within B2B, development has had a somewhat slower pace, but our report shows that over half of the B2B companies surveyed have either started – or accelerated – their sales in digital channels. The report shows that despite the recession, few are slowing down: 72 percent indicate that their investments are unchanged and only 4 percent indicate that they intend to reduce their investments in digital commerce. 13 percent instead plan to increase their investments.

- The trend towards digitization in B2B sales continues to grow steadily and is not expected to slow down. It is therefore important for product companies to find the tools that make a difference to their efficiency and customer experience. The digitization journey is often started with the aim of simplifying internal administration and internal efficiency.  

This year's study shows additional benefits of digital investments:

- Increased digitization of commerce often results in the customer getting a better experience and relationship with the company, for example through self-service services or easy access to important information when they themselves need it.

Increased focus on customer insights and knowledge exchange

We see that this is in line with a more general trend, where a larger number of B2B companies spend more time and resources on increasing insights into the customer journey and mapping the customers' needs. In the past, such measures were more ad-hoc, but more and more companies now have this as part of a systematic way of working.

This is a breakthrough: despite tougher times, the report show increasing number of companies that are making an extra effort to understand customers' needs and habits in their customer journey to use these insights as a basis for adapting their offer. Working in this way with a clear focus on customer insights ensures that the companies' investments will benefit both their own company and the customers.

This year's survey also shows an increased willingness to share knowledge about challenges and results, which in turn is rooted in increased experience with digital as well as a willingness to both discuss and understand challenges. 

- Litium has always had a stated goal of increased knowledge exchange on the market and we are incredibly happy that so many people are taking the initiative to share insights, lessons learned and experiences. This year we received so many ideas, open comments, and tips that we could make a whole chapter around the respondents’ tips and advice for other companies – it will benefit us all over time.

Balance between cost control and investments

It is important to aim for a balance between cost control and investments, especially in times of recession. It's about making well-balanced priorities and investing in investments that actually make a difference, for example by increasing efficiency or improving the customer experience.

- You may not be able to do everything you want, therefore it is important to have a clear strategy and understanding of your customer's needs and changes over time. Taking into account that customers today have more changing demands, it is crucial to start this work as early as possible. It's about being flexible and quick to act when new opportunities arise.

It is also relevant when it comes to recruiting and retaining employees. In the same way that consumers demand digitized processes and services, the employees expect the best possible tools to be efficient.

- You gain in the long term by preparing now for a future boom. By doing the necessary groundwork now, you will be ready when the market turns. Think about what is most important to you and make sure to start acting. Those who do not invest will find it difficult to catch up with those who have already started.


Read the report

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