The Industrial Machinery Industry is Pivoting with Platforms like Alibaba.com

pubdate: 2021-10-25

The global machinery industry—spanning food and beverage manufacturing machinery to plastics machinery—was hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic and is likely to see lasting changes. Severe supply chain interruptions and manufacturing delays have led to difficulty sourcing inputs. Even so, the industry is expected to grow from $535 billion globally in 2020 up to $794 billion in 2025, as companies adapt their operations to a post-pandemic world by making changes like adopting automation and the industrial internet of things (IIoT) and focusing on B2B ecommerce.

There will be certain lasting changes in the industrial machinery industry to mitigate future supply chain disruptions and adapt to a digital-first approach. Building a flexible and efficient supply chain will be a top priority for manufacturers to avoid future severe disruptions. What happens next for businesses that suddenly found themselves surging and for those that are in recovery will depend on how fully and rapidly they embrace B2B ecommerce and digital channels.

How the B2B Ecommerce Boom has Changed the Game for the Industrial Machinery Industry

Once nice to have, ecommerce is now a must-have, offering businesses access to more markets and global supply, greater operational flexibility, and the resilience to survive and thrive during challenging times.

Traditionally, B2B companies have relied on building their supplier relationships face-to-face at trade shows and in factories and offices. With travel and in-person meetings restricted because of the pandemic last year, buyers and sellers were forced to tap into the value of digital tools. Now, 93 percent of U.S. companies are doing some portion of their B2B business online, and 43 percent are using ecommerce, according to an Alibaba.com study.

Digital capabilities made all the difference for many businesses last year, serving as a lifeline to rapidly adapt to new and unprecedented social distancing norms. Going digital helped businesses across the country reimagine their operating models overnight, reach new customers and mitigate interruptions by diversifying their supply chains and supplier base. Shifting to digital has also given businesses key data and insights into customer habits and needs.

The industrial machinery industry is no exception with ecommerce driving the market forward as millions of consumers and customers shifted from shopping in-store to buying online for delivery or curbside pickup. Going forward, one thing is clear: ecommerce is here to stay.