With the combination of global stock shortages and the shift in consumers’ desire to shop directly with brands to fulfill their brands, B2B leaders are investing in digital transformation to meet business goals and customer expectations.
Pentair, a water solutions company, recognized the change in consumer behavior and saw an opportunity to meet their B2B and B2C customers online. Pentair kicked off its digital transformation with a new focus on building long-term customer relationships and building brand awareness. The water solutions company partnered with Blue Acorn iCi to accelerate its digital transformation, which included creating a flexible, scalable, and intelligent digital customer experience solution.
Now is the Time to Accelerate Digital Transformation
According to Forrester, 45% of online adults want to buy directly from a brand, but why now?
- COVID accelerated the increase in online shopping
- There’s typically greater product availability and selection from the manufacturer
- Customers have an increased comfort in the ability to return online orders
- Lower cost due to cutting out the middleman and no markup
“Legacy brands in the past have had a leg up on new brands. They’re more established, so they had a competitive advantage. But in the modern world, it’s the digitally native brands that have the competitive advantage because they can react faster.” – Charlie Hall, Head of Digital Strategy at Blue Acorn iCi.
The drastic shift in customer behaviors has put pressure on brands to accelerate digital transformation. For many companies, this will mean improving agility to stay competitive and owning customer data and the end-to-end experience. Owning customer data is one of the most significant benefits of digital transformation for a B2B company. After relying on retailers and dealers to sell their products, many B2B companies fell out of touch with their target audiences’ needs and pain points.
Additionally, digital transformation requires companies to upgrade technology, streamline processes, and minimize manual workflows with automation—which can drastically cut costs. Lastly, digital transformation enables companies to deliver omnichannel experiences. “It’s about delivering the same kind of experience across all channels,” said Charlie.
While each brand’s digital transformation will look different, the foundation is often the same. To successfully drive digital transformation across an organization, companies must foster customer and employee centricity and pivot to an experience driven digital strategy across people, processes, and platforms.
When helping brands kick off their digital transformation, Blue Acorn iCi works with key stakeholders to build a roadmap. The most successful roadmaps are a year to three years in duration and broken down into quarters. Each quarter has achievable objectives and clear monthly actions—across people, processes, and platforms—that will drive the quarterly objective.
Must-Have Technologies for a Streamlined Direct to Consumer Channel
Pentair sought to transform its residential water filtration go-to-market strategy by selling directly to the end consumer without disrupting their B2B channel or relationship with partners. They partnered with Blue Acorn iCi to create a long-term roadmap for launching their direct-to-consumer channel. As an enterprise company, they have multiple ERPs, warehouses, and brands. These technologies have helped them streamline their DTC channel:
- PIM First: PIM is the foundational piece that manages the technical product information needed to enhance product detail pages, optimize the search experience, and help drive conversions.
- CMS + Commerce + CRM = Success: Pentair uses a headless hybrid approach for their DTC experience. They use Adobe Experience Manager for personalization, content management, globalization, and enterprise-wide workflow governance, while Adobe Commerce supports the checkout and cart experiences. Pentair’s CRM tracks marketing attribution, campaign ROI, lifetime value of customers, and customer interactions.
- Data Integration Platform = Scalability: A data integration platform allows Pentair to have one connection for multiple ERPs and warehouses, which improves the scalability of order management, pricing, and workflows.
- ERP is Key: Pentair worked with their finance team first when setting up their ERP. This helped them determine the correct setup for bookkeeping, general ledger, and order and inventory management.
- Test, Test, Test: A DTC channel is a long-term investment, so Pentair continuously tests experiences to improve conversions and revenue.
“The more data we have, the better experience we can deliver.” – Mike Lewis, Director of Ecommerce at Pentair
What’s Makes Pentair a Leader in the Water & Filtration Industry
B2B Partnerships: Pentair leverages B2B partners throughout the DTC customer lifecycle to ensure a seamless experience, including in-home consultations, last-mile delivery, installation, service & support, and maintenance contracts.
Unique, Valuable Offerings: Pentair’s DTC solution provides water testing and analytics. Based on the results, Pentair drives personalized experiences across its website and apps.
Multi-Channel Experience: The DTC channel is one step for highly considered, high order value products. Pentair uses multiple channels to keep customers engaged from research and consideration through purchase: social media, offline, website, forums, and reviews.
Pentair’s Digital Customer Experience Solution
Pentair uses Adobe Experience Cloud for a scalable Commerce Solution that supports its multiple brands, business units, and ERPs. “For a company like us, partnerships are critically important. So to have someone like Adobe, who has a mature roadmap, who’s investing in ecommerce capabilities, it makes us feel better that as we scale the other areas, we’re going to be in a really good position to move quickly,” said Mike.
According to Adobe, Pentair significantly increased traffic, repeat visits, and engagement and enhanced opportunity management. By leveraging Adobe Experience Cloud solutions, including Adobe Commerce and Adobe Analytics, the company can drive data-driven personalization and generate campaign ROI.
What’s Next for Pentair?
- Continued maturation of the CIF framework
- Improve conversion through personalization
- Testing to improve UX
- Automation for improved efficiency and savings
- Reduced friction with self-service
- Provide customers with fulfillment options
If you want to accelerate your digital transformation like Pentair, reach out to us today to learn how we can help.