Is Your Construction E-Commerce Platform Ready to Meet the Challenge?

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Do we have to remind anyone on the planet that 2020 has been a year of incredible disruption? In addition to the human toll, all businesses across all industries have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Is your construction e-commerce platform fit to withstand even more change on the horizon?

How construction and building materials companies are impacted by 2020's digital disruption

This disruption now calls for organizations to be flexible and able to embrace digital and e-commerce solutions to keep their businesses going. The construction industry may not have relied heavily on e-commerce in the past, but it surely will in the future.

 

Source: visualcapitalist.com

 

Not long ago, contractors were meeting with sales reps, and construction materials were being sold on-site. But conditions have changed drastically in the last six months.

Now businesses in the construction sector are scrambling to rethink their approach and increase their digital transformation in the wake of economic uncertainty. In fact, according to a recent study, as many as 70% of businesses impacted by the disruption of commerce in 2020 say they will maintain or increase their digital transformation spending.  As many as 75% of construction professionals say they will do so, so e-commerce for construction materials may be the fastest-growing sector.

The construction industry will use digital transformation to move forward.

The core of digital transformation is e-commerce. Construction businesses will increase their dependence on e-commerce in response to customer demand. This marks a fundamental change in how the industry has always operated. But there’s nothing usual about these times. Businesses that lag behind when it comes to digitization will struggle to remain viable when person-to-person contact is limited. So, is your e-commerce platform up to the challenge?

Why digital, and why now?

Experts estimate that the global construction market will be worth one trillion dollars by 2030. With an online sales channel, your business can have a piece of that pie. Also, online access is what customers want and expect from businesses today. The demand for e-commerce in the construction industry is even higher than the cross-industry average, leading as many as 84% of companies in the industry to predict they will sell 100% of their products online in the future.  

The urgency around embracing innovation for distributors lies in the cross-industry shift toward direct-to-consumer sales.  If your company is not yet offering any of your products online, now is the best time to start.

Boost efficiency and profits with the right tools and technology

Boosting efficiency using smart automation and e-commerce is within reach for companies in the construction industry, even in times of disruption. But achieving this goal isn’t without its challenges, especially now.  How can you be sure your digital transformation project will be a success? Do your homework; choose the best solution and the best implementation partner.

At Sana Commerce, we strongly recommend having all your key business data available in a single system, such as Microsoft Dynamics 365. That will allow your teams to work smoothly and efficiently and keep all your product, pricing, and client data up to date across all your channels.

When it comes to e-commerce for construction materials, your customers know exactly what they want. Through our experience and our own digital transformation research, we’ve found out what features are most important to them. The top three items on their list of requirements are reduced manual data errors, lower system admin requirements, and minimal order handling for inside sales.

With ongoing growth in the construction materials market,  streamlining operations and saving time makes good business sense. A B2B web store can provide the level of automation necessary to achieve these goals, but it will only be efficient if it all works well with the rest of your construction company’s IT landscape. Effective integration between the ERP and the web store is incredibly important. The right e-commerce solution can also help you adapt more gracefully to disruption moving forward.

For more insight into the trends to look out for in construction e-commerce, download our white paper: Beyond Digital Transformation: Construction Industry Trend Report.

 

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