In the third annual Internet Excellence Awards, global electronics distributor Tech Data Corp. won the top business-to-business award for B2B E-Commerce Player of the Year. Tech Data, a Clearwater, Fla.-based supplier of electronics products—ranging from computer network servers and data center technology to desktop computers and printers—emerged as the winner in a field of dozens of companies nominated for the award.
Three B2B-only awards—for overall B2B online performance, for website design, and for online marketing—were among 13 e-commerce awards granted as part of the Internet Retailer Excellence Awards. The program’s team of judges—including industry analysts, e-commerce practitioners, and the editorial staffs of B2BecNews and Internet Retailer—reviewed hundreds of nominations this year before culling them down to 45 finalists.
“The competition was impressive for the third annual Internet Retailer Excellence Awards, as so many companies are doing really creative work in e-commerce,” says Molly Love, CEO of Vertical Web Media, the publisher of Internet Retailer, B2BecNews and Internet Health Management. “The 45 finalists represent a big range of companies, from big to small and across product categories. What they have in common is that they’re investing heavily in selling online and breaking new ground as they compete for market share in the increasingly competitive e-commerce arena.”
Tech Data received high scores from a panel of judges for offering a strong set of online features on its e-commerce site, Shop.TechData.com, designed to make purchasing its complex products easier and faster for small businesses as well as large corporate customers. An online dashboard it features on its home page, for example, provides such personalized information for logged-on customers as time left on special pricing agreements as well as order status and tracking.
The judges also cited it for providing an effective search-and-navigation system for its complex products and systems, and for providing several online features designed to help resellers acquire and sell Tech Data’s products. The Player of the Year award also recognizes a company’s overall performance in e-commerce, and Tech Data reported that it processes more than 50% of its sales—and some 70% of its orders—electronically.
Tech Data shared the B2B E-Commerce Website Design of the Year Award with PacknWood, a manufacturer of eco-friendly food packaging and utensils that it sells to food-service supplies distributors and retail chains. The judges decided to grant the website design award to both companies, recognizing that they each excel in designing a website for their targeted markets—but from far different vantage points.
Tech Data, No. 57 in the B2B E-Commerce 300, is a publicly traded company with sales of $26 billion for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2017, with more than $13.1 billion through e-commerce. PacknWood is a relatively tiny U.S. unit of Firstpack, a family-owned company based in Paris. Among the design features on PacknWood.com are 360-degree views, videos and visually appealing displays of food that complement its products and brand image. Since redesigning its site a year ago, the number of orders placed on PacknWood.com are up 34%, resulting in a 30% increase in online sales, says Ryan Spooner, manager of marketing and web development.
SupplyHouse.com, a distributor of plumbing supplies, won the B2B E-Commerce Marketer of the Year Award for its “Trade Tuesday” promotionthat—in a nod to the post-Thanksgiving Cyber Monday of retail e-commerce—offered discount prices on the first Tuesday after the long holiday weekend to the construction contractors and other tradespeople that purchase its plumbing, heating, ventilation and air-conditioning products. Integrated with SupplyHouse.com’s TradeMaster loyalty program, last November’s seventh annual Trade Tuesday event resulted in sharp increases in online traffic, conversion rates and sales, marketing manager Tom Reillysays.
SupplyHouse, which features dozens of product and how-to videos on its site, also took first place for the best product video of the year—an award category that was open to retail as well as B2B e-commerce practitioners. It won the award for a video on “Comparing PVC Fittings,” or piping supplies made of polyvinyl chloride used in various water management projects. The judges found the video both entertaining and informative. The other finalists for the product video award were Sylvane and Vurtego.
B2B E-Commerce Marketer of the Year: SupplyHouse.com, DollarDays, Lightning Labels, MSC Industrial Supply Co.;
B2B E-Commerce Website Redesign of the Year: PacknWood, Tech Data, Cole-Parmer, Sullivans;
B2B E-Commerce Player of the Year: Tech Data, Amazon Business, Cisco Systems, Garrett Popcorn Shops, Kimball Midwest.
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