B2B Portal: A Business Platform to Ultimate Productivity Improvement

If somebody tells you that your present corporate website can be converted to a B2B portal which will help you significantly improve your company’s productivity in both of the two primary factors: Revenue Growth and Cost Saving, and that the portal can be launched in a matter of months with a very reasonable investment, what will be your reaction? Read on to learn how corporations all over the world are missing an opportunity, which can revolutionize the way they manage their businesses.

What is a B2B portal?

A portal is defined as an access point to World Wide Web. A portal is a combination of web pages, features and services which become a primary destination for users. The word was first used to describe the sites of popular Internet access providers or search engines such as AOL, MSN and Yahoo! At a later stage, the word “portal” evolved into something bigger covering business websites, where a corporate portal or enterprise information portal acts as a base for employees, customers, suppliers and other associates of a company to access corporate information and web services. A B2B portal is a distinct kind of website with features to conduct electronic business and manage significant parts of corporate business processes.

Benefits of having a B2B portal

Today, B2B portals are not just a fancy idea! They are an absolute necessity for all enterprises of any type and size. The advantages of having a quality B2B portal are massive. Implementation of a true high quality B2B portal could have immediate impact on company productivity.

Revenue Growth

Revenue Increase from Existing Clients

Existing clients get faster and easier access to product information, quicker response to their requests, get better customer support and are able to buy products online.

Revenue Increase from Value Added Services

Once a B2B portal is set as the primary sales channel, spared resources can be used to create more value added services for clients. Some of the services that the portal may offer also could be utilized to generate more value.

Cost Savings

Order Processing Cost

If the B2B portal integrates supply chain management solution, it will reduce the cost of processing orders drastically. Studies show that similar solution can reduce cost of processing a purchase order from US$ 70 down in average to US$ 6 only.

Sales and support costs

Automated sales and customer support features integrated in the solution is capable of reducing overhead costs up to 30 percent.

Inventory keeping costs

Clearer visibility and forecasting ability thanks to various features of the B2B portal may help companies considerably reduce inventory keeping costs.

Other key benefits include:

Low customer acquisition cost

Effective portal branding on the Internet will help to attract customers from new sources. The cost of acquiring customers through online channels is always cheaper than other traditional methods.

Improve customer service

Ability to have constant interaction with customers through the B2B portal helps companies serve customers better. The B2B portal solution allows tracking the whole ordering process from payment to delivery and brings greater efficiency in customer service.

Reduce sourcing time cycle

The customers can select products from the integrated marketplace of the B2B portal and either sends purchase orders or directly buy products using the shopping cart. Buyers handle all their procurement related correspondence from a consolidated working page, which helps them react instantly and reduce time in document processing.

Community participation

Company buyers and sellers can create communities surrounding the B2B portal’s discussion board. This helps getting valuable feedbacks on time, building new partnerships using the networking ability of a community, and disseminating important information to members easily.

Real time access to current product information

Current information of a product is vital for an accurate buying decision. Updating product content and other information using customized forms as it is necessary, the company can help buyers and other associates to take critical decision promptly.

Control rogue spending

Consolidated and automated procurement and approval method stops maverick buying in a company.

Main components of a B2B portal

Supply Chain Management

Supply chain management solutions can deliver great values to company’s existing systems. Implementation of these solutions will help achieving incredibly high return on investment and will have tremendous impact on company’s business, which include: better productivity, faster order processing, greater visibility, the elimination of maverick or unplanned purchasing, etc.

Marketplace

This is the venue where the enterprises can post their products for sale. A sophisticated shopping cart will be integrated into the electronic marketplace in order to automate the buying process.

Auction

Electronic auction system can use both English and Dutch auction methods. For convenience the auction component can be integrated into the electronic marketplace.

Online auction helps liquidate surplus goods easily.

Reverse Auction

This solution allows the company to automate electronic procurement, where suppliers compete for business real time online.

Storefront for Participants

Each associate of the B2B portal will get a Storefront that may reflect profile of the company, its products, services or other information.

Forum

A Forum or a Discussion Board is an organized, on-line interactive message board where participants conduct discussion on a set of topics by posting questions, comments and responses.

Internal Messaging System

Elaborate Messaging System allows a participant of the B2B portal send and receive messages from other participants and the company. Since the messages do not leave a secured server, participants would not be worried about sending sensitive information over the Internet.

Classified

Catalog based bulletin board allows company associates to post important notices in various predefined formats.

Directory of Companies

This is a listing of all registered associates of the B2B portal either by business category or by alphabetical order. An advanced search engine tool is incorporated in order to find a company based on data provided.

E-catalog

E-catalog — a hierarchy of product and service categories based on UNSPCS, a global products and services classification method that covers the broadest collection of industries and commodities available today, and designed to facilitate e-commerce transactions by providing geography-independent common nomenclature system.

Product Content Adding System

Product adding mechanism based on either easy-to-use wizard or simple but detail forms allows users to integrate products or services with accurate and up-to-date information.

Product Notification

The system can generate an alert and send by email to a user, who requested to inform once a particular product or service gets added to the E-catalog.

Numerous other features could be incorporated to an existing B2B portal depending on requirement, such as: News Aggregation using RSS feed, Contact Management, Electronic Journal, Press Room, Document Repository, etc.

Time needed to set up

Using ready made B2B Portal components from a provider like Rusbiz.com a medium size portal can be built or integrated to existing website within three to four months.

By developing a B2B portal ahead of your major competitors you can give your business a significant boost and make your company stand out from the crowd.

Top 10 Tips to Follow for Great Business Productivity

Productivity means a combination of intelligent planning and focused efforts. Maintaining the productivity throughout the work is a great challenge and bringing the best of our work within the timeframe is crucial. Productivity can be continuously improved and by following some of the basic tips, one can achieve the target more easily and continuously.

Below stated are a few simple but effective tips that you need to follow, if you are running a business and want to attain more productivity out of your efforts and efficiencies:-

1. Fine help / Delegate tasks accordingly- taking a large task alone is not possible. You must need some kinds of help from others. In order to get help from others, you need to trust your colleagues/subordinates in helping you to complete your work. If you tell your colleague about the deadline of the project, then they will take it very seriously.

2. Do not dwell into unnecessary meetings- time management is the most important part of getting the maximum benefits of your work. Try not to waste time behind unnecessary stuffs. You must know to shortlist the most and least important meetings and conversations to carry on your works.

3. Create to-do lists- as we said, time management is the greatest factor, creating a checklist of the to do work is really important. This helps you to plan accordingly and will help you to maintain your speed of work to bring the maximum output within the limited time zone.

4. Take breaks- working at a stretch is sometimes very lethargic and affects your energy limit. It is very essential to take breaks within a day or some months. Also, spending 8-10 hours at a desk for too long may invite many diseases like cervical problems, heart related diseases, over-weight and other health problems.

5. Weed out distractions- there could be many distractive things around you. It has been observed that many people are busy surfing their social media profiles unnecessarily to check the updates or read some entertaining articles or contents. They are quite distractive and further, destructive for you. So better, get disconnected from all those disturbances, at least when you are working.

6. Maintain a proper interaction with the clients- foremost thing that must be executed properly to improve your business output. If you want to retain the potential clients and gain many new clients, you must develop many visitor engagement strategies. Replying them politely and instantly will really help to maintain the relationship; and don’t forget to collect the proper feedback. It will also help you to improve the quality of your works and services.

7. Create monthly newsletter to keep in touch with the clients- You need to deliver some useful tips and information on the topics like: how to save money? The current market analysis etc. To the clients through newsletter. This will help in building up a strong relationship with the clients.

8. Stop watching so much TV- the second most important mode of distraction. Sitting idly and continuously watching TV will affect your performance and energy level. It is better to watch useful things on TV for specific period.

9. Set ambitious, yet realistic goals- You should set such goals that are useful, focused, realistic and achievable. It should truly match your work and output.

10. Designate times to handle e-mail- you must be alert and active to handle and reply every mail you receive, make sure you don’t miss any important mails and keep a habit of replying to every important mails. Ignoring unnecessary mails or spam mails is also necessary as it saves your time also.

Thus, once you are following such an easy and effective steps in your life. You are actually following the true steps of success with great productivity.

5 Destroyers of Productivity That Lurk in Your Business

With increasing competition, it’s essential for business entities to enhance productivity to stay competitive in the market. As an entrepreneur, you need to take guard against factors, which threaten to hamper employee productivity. Given below are five menaces that constantly lurk in your business.

Interruptions, distractions and idle gossips

In most offices, workers face interruptions and distractions all day, which makes it difficult for them to stay focused. These distractions come from every direction and in every form: phones, mails, colleagues, idle gossips, etc. These disturbances reduce productivity at workplace dramatically. As an employer, you should strictly deal with unnecessary disruptions that eat away efficiency. Make concerted effort to create a healthy environment where everyone gives 100% effort.

Lack of clear vision

Lack of clarity in vision and goals can dent efficiency of your members. Each worker must know his role and work accordingly. You must make the missions and goals of your company clear to your workforce. Your firm’s mission statement should not have jargons, but a definite meaning. If necessary, conduct meetings and conferences to remind members about the goals of the company. Hold personal meetings with people who find it difficult to understand their role.

Improper time management

Time management is extremely important for productivity improvement. With proper time management, you can gain more than your expectations. If you find employees reporting late constantly, penalize them. Observe how everybody is spending his or her time in office and if you find anything wrong, point it out immediately. Sometimes there are genuine reasons to miss a deadline. However, missing deadlines on a regular basis casts a bad impression about your company in eyes of customers. Make your workers understand the value of planning, which will reap benefits for them in the long run.

Overdependence on meetings

Productive teamwork doesn’t need meetings for every single decision. Workers become inefficient when struck in long meetings over petty issues. Constant conferences kill time and retard them. You should hold a meeting when it’s urgent and necessary. Gathering every day to discuss irrelevant matter sends negative vibes to employees.

Office politics

Office politics is something that you can’t avoid completely, but can definitely reduce it by taking tough actions. Look out for workers who constantly criticize the management, its decisions and foul-mouth their seniors. Take special care of new employees who are most vulnerable to dirty politics. You should not shy away from terminating someone who creates an unhealthy atmosphere in the office.

Once you address the above issues, the efficiency of your team will reach new levels. Members will feel more vitalized and vibrant. At the same time, it will make you feel good and lift your spirits.