Portals arose for a very good reason. As more and more websites came up, it created a convoluted web without navigational clarity. Portals acted as ‘doorway pages’, guiding people to proper places. When business rode piggyback on the internet, and then became its driving engine, ecommerce sites mushroomed to leverage on the facility of this network. Business portals (websites) became the portals of business – the door through which business is conducted. In doing so, it lost some of the comprehensive nature of earlier portals which catered to wider fields.
A Business Portal is any online avenue of business. Much like the offline real world, things are sold and resold on the online world as well. And much like the offline world, there can be two types of stores – Business to Business (wholesalers), and Business to Consumers (retailers). A B2B portal is, thus, any website that offers any product (physical or non-physical, like data, software, and information) or services in bulk amounts to other business.
Products and services move between two businesses through a B2B portal, and do not reach the consumer directly, although some portals fall in the hazy zone between B2B and B2C. As ecommerce picks up more steam and all offline businesses make their online presence, the scope of B2B portals will go up. For many businesses now their B2B portal is their chief revenue source. Thus, having an easy and effective business portal is considered essential in most businesses.