B2B & B2C Product Management: The Solution is PIM

Do you know the difference between B2B and B2C eCommerce? The two models aren’t as black and white as you’d think. In fact, you’d be mistaken for thinking eCommerce is all about B2C retail. Due to changes in consumer behaviour and complex global supply chains, B2B consumers also expect rich eCommerce experiences. 

Whether business to consumer or business to business – or both! – your product information needs to exceed customer expectations. We’ll look at how a Product Information Management (PIM) solution is central to driving informed B2B and B2C eCommerce buying decisions.

B2B & B2C eCommerce: Differences and Similarities

Generally speaking, the B2C and B2B customer follow similar paths, reaching similar milestones. However, they have very different journeys.

So, let’s compare two eCommerce buyer journeys side by side.

eCommerce Buyer Journey



Eg. Personal protective equipment for a manufacturer


Eg. A consumer shopping for trainers

  • A site manager becomes aware of the need for new PPE through advertising based in trade magazines, LinkedIn marketing, or from their own staff. 
  • A combination of offline and online marketing.
  • Firstly, a consumer becomes aware of their need for trainers via social media (Instagram) or an email newsletter.
  • They become aware of the need for trainers due to an emotional/impulsive response to marketing.
  • Meanwhile, the site manager will ask their line manager for the green light to research solutions. 
  • Once get the go-ahead, they begin researching online.
  • They look at sizing charts and download technical data sheets listed against each product.
  • After that, the shopper browses different fashion websites, comparing products using augmented reality and interactive product pages (videos, 360-degree views).
  • On the other hand, it’s a quick process as only one person is involved.
  • Research is extensive and restrictive to office hours. Then, they might have to develop a business case.
  • The decision will be made on cost, quality, delivery time, and will be made by the board at their end-of-quarter meeting. 
  • Then, their decision reached on a variety of factors, such as cost, style, quality, and brand.
  • The safety equipment is ordered through an online B2B builders merchant.
  • Payment options include PayPal, Amazon Pay, or Bankers Automated Clearing System (BACS).
  • In addition, B2B transactions usually have the option of placing an order over the phone with a sales representative.
  • Sales process completed through retailer’s online store with next-day delivery.
  • Seamless transaction. Payments include Apple/Google pay, Paypal, debit/credit card, or Buy Now Pay Later options (BNPL). 
  • They might seek a commercial agreement with the supplier and become a long term customer.
  • If they’re happy, they might become a repeat customer and leave a five-star review.

Product Management B2B vs B2C: Blurred Lines

Even with B2B sales, your target audience still uses Facebook and Youtube! Don’t forget these platforms when advertising products and services.

Similarly, B2C audiences still do extensive research before buying a product. According to Forrester, 59% of shoppers prefer to research online, rather than speak to in-store sales reps.

Traditional B2B eCommerce businesses are developing direct-to-consumer strategies. For instance, it’s now easier for bolts & washer manufacturers to set up sales channels on marketplaces to sell excess stock.

Correspondingly, B2C retailers sell to other companies, too. For example, office supply retailer Staples sell to other businesses via Business Advantage. Likewise, the outdoor clothing store Regatta has a separate eCommerce website for B2B sales.

As you can see, by engaging with both, you reach new customers outside of your normal channel and clear excess inventory. Above all, your sales will soar and your stock controller will thank you!

Product Data is Central to B2B and B2C eCommerce

That being said, at the heart of both sales models is your product data. Here are the key elements to ensure valuable conversions.

Accurate and detailed product descriptions

Is the watch you’re selling waterproof? If you’re a building merchant, are your bricks frost-protected? Make sure your product information is specific.

A detailed product description sets customer expectations about what they’ll receive. This will reduce the number of returns and increase confidence in the purchase. They’re more likely to return, too!

Digital Assets 

High-quality product images and videos are key to showcasing your products and converting browsers to buyers.

B2B buyers require assets, too. This includes installation and service videos, manufacturer drawings, and Safety Data Sheets (SDS). 

Including digital assets will drive discovery and demand across all channels. After all, 60% of online shoppers say they need a minimum of 3 images to make an informed buying decision.

Specifications and Sizing

Are shoppers able to tell if a drillbit is 67mm? Is the drill bit self-sharpening? What’s the shank type?

For knitwear, have you provided detailed care instructions? Is the product made from lamb’s wool – or nylon? In addition, how tall is the model in the product imagery?

Providing a detail-driven customer experience allows shoppers to make informed decisions. Moreover, you’ll improve the overall buying experience, becoming a trusted brand within your niche.

Shipping Information

If you’re a building merchant who supplies a new build developer, are your bricks only available for local delivery? If so, make sure to include a list of postcodes with eligible collection points.

It’s no different for B2C retailers, too. You might include delivery by private courier or click-and-collect.

Furthermore, shoppers also make shipping decisions based on sustainability. So, if your couriers use carbon-neutral vehicles, be sure to say.

Product Information Management (PIM) for B2B & B2C Product Management

Whichever model your focus on – or if you do both! – the devil is in the product detail.  So, here’s why a B2C or B2B PIM system gets you ahead in a competitive landscape.

Accelerate Your Time To Market

PIM systems like Pimberly provide tools to ensure collaboration across your team, removing bottlenecks. Therefore, onboarding and enriching products is lightning-quick. 

Consequently, a smooth product launch gives you extra selling days, putting you ahead of your competitors.

Guarantee Completeness of your Product Information

If you’re selling B2B or B2C, Pimberly’s approval workflows and lifecycles ensure a product is never launched without key product information. 

Having enriched and detailed product information at every touchpoint will give shoppers an informed buying decision. Your return rates will plummet!

Ensure Brand Consistency Across Sales Channels

If you’re selling to marketplaces and your website, Pimberly’s scope functionality will help tailor product descriptions for each channel.

For instance, if you’re selling excess stock via Amazon, you’ll need bullet-point product descriptions. However, for your commerce platform, you’ll want to be more in line with your brand tone of voice. 

Whether selling goods or services, PIM software curates a watertight omnichannel experience without extra work.

Bring Your Product Pages to Life

A PIM like Pimberly comes with a Digital Asset Management (DAM) hub. So, you’re able to enrich products with images and videos to drive product discovery and upgrade product experiences.

If you’re a B2B product manager, PIM systems like Pimberly will store environmental labeling, instruction manuals, or CAD drawings. So, you’ll never launch a product without key sustainability and safety data.


In short, whether you’re a B2B business, B2C, or a hybrid model, rich product content is key to turning digital window shoppers into loyal customers.

With powerful, intuitive tools, a PIM like Pimberly will just do that – and more.