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Business-to-Business (abbreviations B2B , B-to-B or BtB) describes business relationships between two or more companies - in contrast to relationships between companies and other groups, such as B. Consumers ( Business-to-Consumer ), i.e. private individuals as customers, employees ( Business-to-Employee ) or public administration ( Business-to-Administration ).


Business relationships are primarily described in marketing . While in the past mainly industrial or capital goods marketing was spoken of, today we speak of B2B marketing in order to distinguish ourselves from consumer goods marketing (also known as B2C marketing). B2B marketing encompasses all products and services (no distinction is made between whether the good is intended as an investment) whose common characteristic is the sales market . Products and services procured in this way create added value for the company .

Business-to-business PR - B2B PR - is communication and public relations from company to company, in contrast to business-to-consumer PR - B2C PR - which is aimed from companies to end customers. In the B2B area, the users of a product are usually not the decision-makers when it comes to purchasing a product. Often several decision-makers are involved in the buying process (the buying center ). It is therefore necessary to know the decision-making processes and the decision-makers in the target companies - that is, departments, hierarchical levels and everyone involved in the decision-making process.

With the advent of the Internet and many English terms, B2B has also established itself for (electronic) communication relationships between companies. The business processes are categorized in this way, especially in connection with the support of business processes through electronic means of communication . B2B is the oldest and a large part of e-business . The main area of ​​application is the electronic purchase of B and C articles (see electronic procurement ).

Various techniques and standards are used to electronically link companies, for example virtual marketplaces , electronic data interchange (EDI), web services or business search engines .

See also


  • Robert de Zoeten, Robert Hasenböhler, Paul Ammann: Industrial Marketing - Practice of business-to-business business. Schäffer-Poeschel, Stuttgart 1999, ISBN 3-7910-1112-X .
  • Peter Godefroid: Business-to-Business Marketing. Kiehl, 2003, ISBN 3-470-47173-8 .
  • Werner Pepels: Business-to-Business Marketing. Luchterhand (Hermann), 1999, ISBN 3-472-03631-1 .

Web links

Wiktionary: B2B  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations