When it comes to eCommerce on Magento, nothing beats the convenience and ease of running a wholesale operation. Instead of selling to individual retail customers, orders are sold in bulk to wholesale buyers. It’s now their responsibility to market and sell the product, dealing with customer queries, complaints and individual shipping matters. It’s not hard to see the appeal with this simplified form of eCommerce.
While it’s true that Magento is geared towards retail eCommerce, there are some easy ways to begin wholesaling alongside a retail shop. This usually involves adapting four attributes of your existing site: security, customer groups, price and promotion. Here we take a look at each one for an easy way to start selling wholesale.
Firstly, it’s essential to consider your existing retail customers in comparison to wholesale. Showing wholesale prices alongside retail prices should be avoided for obvious reasons. Retail users won’t want to see the cheapest price for bulk before having to pay the higher price for a single item.
Therefore, it’s essential to place a divide between retail and wholesale customers. This can be done by creating a second store view, giving wholesale customers login access to a part of the site solely designed for their buying needs.
Always include a ‘Be a Wholesale Customer’ link on the regular site so users have the chance to fill a form and request access to this second store view.
From the admin panel in Magento, it’s now time to create customer groups which defines which users see which prices, taxes, shipping costs, stock quantity and so on. To do this, simply click on the ‘Customers’ tab followed by ‘Customer Groups’, and ‘Add New Customer Group’. From here, you can create each customer profile, inputting tax class, shipping costs and more.
Once you’ve created these, you’ll need to add these to the groups manually. Go to ‘Customers’ followed by ‘Manage Customers’ and you’ll see all the customer groups that you created. Click ‘edit’ to change the customer to the one you created initially. Now each customer group can be shown different prices depending on stock quantity and so on.
Magento’s tiered pricing is particularly helpful for altering product cost based on the quantity of product ordered. By going to the ‘Products’ section of your admin panel and clicking ‘Prices’ you can easily apply this tiered system. Simply choose each customer group which in this case would either be ‘Retail’ or ‘Wholesale’ and apply the corresponding price – it couldn’t be easier.
Just because you’re selling to wholesale customers it doesn’t mean that marketing isn’t still essential. While certain tactics won’t be as successful, it’s still important to include tried and tested methods across you wholesale store view.
That may be similar to retail methods such as ‘buy one get one free’. Only this time, it might be ‘buy one box of 50 and get another box of 50 free’. Or it might be heavily discounted shipping for larger orders. Either way, your wholesale website needs just as much consideration as your retail one.