It’s time to take another look at your B2B digital strategy. Are you positioned to sell the way customers are projected to transact over the next 5 years? My colleague Jitender Miglani and I just released our report 2022 B2B E-Commerce Forecast, US and it tells an eye-opening story of what’s going to happen over the next 5 years.  

Here are three take-aways for Forrester clients to keep in mind: 

  • We’ll see historically comparable growth off a base that came 2 years earlier than expected. When Forrester published the B2B e-commerce forecast in 2019, we predicted that US B2B e-commerce would hit $1.8 Trillion By 2023. COVID-19 hit a year later. At the end of 2021 B2B e-commerce reached $1.7 trillion – so, just shy of what we expected 2 years from now – and it’s growing at a similar CAGR. 
  • B2B e-commerce will grow by over 2 times of offline and EDI combined. The growth rate of e-commerce is translating into large absolute dollars. In 5 years, offline B2B sales will essentially have remained flat, and EDI will have gained modestly, for a combined $0.60 trillion. By contrast, B2B e-commerce will have grown by $1.37 trillion. 
  • Marketplaces are riding the rising tide. Enterprises don’t consistently publish the commissions they make off third party sellers. And a growing number of firms use a mix of strategies to expand their assortments. “Non-merchant E-Commerce” is the category name for sales through a marketplace business model. According to our data, they account for 1% of US B2B e-commerce today and will account for the same in 2027. That’s tiny when you compare that to “merchant wholesales/distributor-selling” and “manufacturer direct-selling e-commerce.” What about the CAGR for Non-merchant E-Commerce? 17.8%. Stay tuned for future research on this topic.  

Forrester clients should download our report, “2022 B2B E-Commerce Forecast, US and dig into specific merchandise categories that are ahead of or behind the curve of B2B E-Commerce adoption in the U.S.  

And if you want to understand what marketplaces can do for your B2B e-commerce business, call your analyst. I’m standing by to help you make sense of your options for participating in marketplace business models as an operator or a 3rd party seller. Schedule an inquiry with me to talk about how marketplaces can help you deliver your digital strategy. 



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