The Amazon Business 2021 B2B E-commerce in Evolution Report provides useful B2B insights and trends from US procurement experts. The research explores the fast evolution of B2B e-procurement over the last several years by surveying 250 B2B buyers and 250 B2B sellers across sectors and encompassing organizations of all sizes.
The study provides procurement executives with important, practical insights from key procurement leaders as they begin or continue their transformation path.
E-procurement is no longer enough
“Our 2021 B2B E-commerce in Evolution study emphasizes that merely utilizing e-procurement is no longer sufficient,” said Todd Heimes, director of Amazon Business. “In the end, we believe that companies have a great opportunity to leverage e-procurement technology that will assist them in overcoming operational difficulties that reduce efficiency and waste funds. Adapting to buyer needs will help seller companies to remain relevant with their B2B clients. With our technology and experience, we at Amazon Business are committed to assisting buyers and sellers as they traverse the next chapters of their transformation journeys.”
According to the research, the worldwide pandemic has spurred attempts to digitize procurement, with 38% of buyers indicating that they made more than 50% of their organization’s purchases online in 2020.
The fact that 56 percent of small and medium businesses (SMBs) said they more fully digitized their purchasing process as a result of COVID-19, compared to only 42 percent of enterprise commercial companies, suggests that smaller businesses were lagging behind larger businesses in terms of digitisation prior to the pandemic.
Procurement’s Top Priorities for 2021:
The report underscores the larger role corporate responsibility is now playing in procurement.
- Improving efficiency 40%
- Cost reductions 34%
- Improving sustainability in purchasing 39%
- Supporting local businesses within their community 37%
- Notingly, 46% of commercial business respondents reported supporting local businesses as a top priority and 39% of comercial businesses reported supplier increasing diversity as a priorty, indicating the growing importance of corporate socifal responsibility in the commercial sector.
- 83% of buyers say they plan to increase their purchasing budgets reserved for Black and minority-owned businesses in 2021, of which, 48% are planning to increase their budgets by 20% or more.
Per industry, the report shows the top priorities for 2021 are:
- Education – Reducing costs (48%)
- Government – Supporting remote work (50%)
- Healthcare – Increasing efficiency (52%)
- Commercial – Improving sustainability (49%)
Healthcare is a highly regulated sector with rigorous product standards, so it’s not surprising that 32 percent of healthcare respondents stated obtaining suppliers that could match their demands was their biggest pain issue in 2020. In case you missed it, we recently spoke with Stephany Lapierre, Founder and CEO of Tealbook, about this particular issue and how their supplier intelligence platform might assist.
“We created a beautiful, user-friendly interface that provides our clients with access into the vendor master as well as transparency and visibility across all of their vendors. Reporting, supplier searches, and other lightweight capabilities provide staff with the knowledge they need to better manage things like supplier variety and respond to changing situations more quickly, improving agility,” said Lapierre.
Allowing purchasers to engage with data on a big scale and efficiently yields better results. She cites Tealbook’s work in the United Kingdom as an example. Working with the UK government, Tealbook added 56,000 new suppliers (mostly in India, the UK, and the US) as well as 22,000 Good Manufacturing Practices for health care certificates and over 250,000 additional ISO certificates in an effort to provide the UK with comprehensive supplier resources of PPE during the Covid-19 outbreak.