The restaurant industry has been making huge shifts in recent years, especially in the digital arena. And if you’re a restaurant supply wholesaler, providing your restaurant customers with the most innovative and efficient platform for ordering their supplies and equipment is quickly becoming a critical part of staying ahead of the competition.

But just having a website isn’t enough anymore. Customers (and people everywhere) expect to be able to do business and make their purchases as easily and conveniently as possible. This includes restaurants looking to order from vendors, and having the right kind of ecommerce platform is crucial in the fast-paced restaurant and dining industry.

While ecommerce platforms are nothing new when it comes to B2C business (think Amazon or Zappos), the B2B e-commerce experience has some hurdles to cross. For a long time, placing orders manually has been the norm. But the industry is catching up with technology. If you’re looking for an ecommerce platform for your B2B business, you’ll want to be certain you know what to look for and what your customers actually want.

Anyone can tell you that B2B sales is different than B2C. If you’re a restaurant supply vendor, you’ll have certain requirements when selling to customers. Your e-commerce platform will need to meet their specific needs. Let’s take a look at the kinds of functionality that your ecommerce platform should have.

Payment Options

A restaurant will typically buy larger, sometimes recurring orders in order to meet their inventory requirements. An ecommerce platform needs to have flexible payment options for restaurant owners – to pay one or multiple invoices, or maybe just part of their payment.

And you’ll want to make sure your platform has the capability to allow customers to make these payments through not just a website interface, but also through a mobile platform. Online customers (and your own restaurant customers) will shop across different devices. Your content should be responsive and display across multiple devices.

Standard Package Ordering

Sometimes your various restaurant customers will make similar orders — setting up your platform so that they can quickly select a standard package order (instead of having to add specific items themselves) and checkout easily will prevent headaches and help them do business better.

Repeat Orders

Often customers will need to purchase the same order on a regular basis. Setting up your platform so that they’re able to select the same order on a recurring timeline makes their job easier, so they spend less time placing an order and more time running their restaurant.

Ultimately, your B2B ecommerce platform should aim to help your customers run their businesses more efficiently because you help yourself by helping your customers. Choosing the right eCommerce platform for your business does take time and some research, but it’s an investment in your business, and will keep your customers happy — and coming back to place more orders.

If you have further questions about an ecommerce platform for your restaurant supply business, give us a call at 214.380.4184 or contact us here.