New Forrester Wave Finds That Midmarket Companies Want Enterprise Features At A Small Business Price

Andy Hoar
Vice President, Principal Analyst
August 31, 2017

I’m pleased to announce the release of “The Forrester Wave: B2B Commerce Suites For Midsize Organizations, Q3 2017.”  A first for Forrester, this Wave dives into the world of B2B companies with $50 million to $500 million in total revenue that are looking for commerce solutions to both shift and lift revenue.

Midmarket companies are a core part of a B2B space that Forrester estimates will reach $1.2 trillion in total spending by the year 2021. To support those burgeoning online sales, we expect companies to spend $2.4 billion on B2B commerce platforms by 2021.   Of that total, we forecast that B2B companies will spend just over $1 billion on midmarket B2B commerce platforms alone.

In customer interviews, midmarket companies emphasized the need to create “Amazon-like” customer experiences – though on limited budgets and limited time.  Today’s midsize B2B firms are looking for data-driven, enterprise-quality commerce technology at a small-business price that supports:

  • Full-spectrum selling. B2B customers today interchangeably use both self-serve and full-service buying options. Midmarket B2B sellers must operate solutions that meet the idiosyncratic needs of business customers who often prefer to buy without talking to sales reps, but who also may consult with sales reps for more complex and involved purchases.
  • Personalized digital commerce experiences. Personalization is as critical for midmarket B2B companies as it is for enterprise B2B companies. Commerce suites personalize the buying experience for midmarket B2B customers by controlling the front-end experience or by managing the customer data that fuels personalization.
  • Agility and fast time-to-market. Customers need agility and faster TTM from their platforms, which means that years-long implementations and heavy-IT-footprint solutions are becoming obsolete. Midmarket B2B companies now insist that their commerce solutions have cloud-based, service-oriented architectures that operate in a more modern and modular environment.

In this new Wave, we identified the 11 most significant vendors — BigCommerce, CloudCraze, Episerver, Handshake, Insite Software, Intershop, Magento Commerce, Oracle NetSuite, Sana Commerce, SAP Hybris, and Unilog — and researched, analyzed, and scored them. This report shows how each provider measures up and helps digital business professionals at midmarket B2B companies advance their commerce objectives.

For further insights into the Wave process and results, Forrester clients are welcome to reach out to either me or Bruce Eppinger directly via inquiry access.

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