Let me tell you something, choosing Magento 2 is the best step you ever took for your B2B business to succeed. No doubt. Period.
Magento wholesale checks all boxes on the list of what it takes to make a B2B eCommerce works. From cloud-based, fully customizable, multi-channel and roles support to easy-to-use analytics. Magento 2 has it all.
Moving forward, I will give you a step-by-step Magento B2B commerce guide that breaks down the formula for a thriving wholesale business.
Step 1: Investigate the market
There are 3 components when it comes to research the market: your competitors, your customers and yourself.
And here is where it gets tricky – sampling. The concept of customer persona or competitor silhouette is far more complicated and struggled for fellow wholesalers. First, you don’t have that rich of a customer base. Second, the gap between suspects is too big to ignore in the average calculation.
That’s why it’s best to take these three factors in conjunction with relation power between them. I highly suggest you use Porter’s five forces framework for your market research.
This scheme is easy to gather metrics and to identify your priority in the current Magento B2B feature list. Understanding the environment will help you live and thrive.
Step 2: Choose your Magento 2 B2B extension.
Here is the deal, Magento 2 is fundamentally prepared for B2B to take over. But it’s really sad to look at what you can change with the default.
Therefore, you need to equip your site with a powerful plugin that extends the Magento B2B feature list to the max. I can confidently say that Magento 2 B2B extension package can play this role perfectly.
Moving forward, let’s talk about how this plugin keeps your site in the right direction by interacting with different B2B merchant requirements.
Step 3: Set up and manage B2B accounts closely
The complexity of B2B buying account
Your customers in B2B are companies, not individuals. And it’s even more complicated to Magento B2B Commerce because of the structure within buying account of these companies.
Different companies require different treatments. Different divisions call for different approaches. That’s why you need to set up barrier after barrier to making sure you take care of all parties equally, both horizontally and vertically.
1st barrier: force login
For one, if you install the all-in-one wholesales solution above, this step is easier than ever.
The extension makes way for different customer groups if you’re into walking both lines: B2C and B2B. However, if you’re purely a wholesales business, restricting access is still vital to your success.
By doing so, you can hide your exclusive prices and discounts for B2B tier as well as encourage visitors to become customers with a redirect. Within this process, BSS Commerce’s detailed registration form will help you gather metrics that both gives you a look into your customers and as a form to evaluate partnership potentials.
Moreover, having a B2B account is better for both your business and your partner. And that part will be revealed later.
2nd barrier: block catalog
At heart, B2B business is about exclusivity. Therefore, you need to emanate that sense right at the get-go. By blocking certain pages on your site, you increase your brand authority and encourage customers to create accounts.
3rd barrier: minimum amount to proceed
Your B2B customers need to achieve a certain amount per order to receive the wholesales benefits. And it’s your job to strengthen the relationship via your purchasing regulations. As the customers become more relaxed after being approved as B2B buyers, you need to remind them about their bare minimum to proceed with their current status.
Together, these barriers keep your customer base in line, separated and easy to manage.
Step 4: Manage your price per tier
It’s just natural to set up a reward system for customers. The benefits of this practice don’t stop at maintaining customers but also extend to their lifetime value.
In paper, Magento B2B commerce can divide your customer base into different categories and you can set different price rules for them. But that’s not enough. There will be partners that bring you more merits than others, and you want to treat them right.
Understanding that need, we include the hide price feature along with catalog restriction as mentioned above that hit two birds with one stone: keep the price private and the communication alive.
Sales in the B2B scene require much more high-context communication than B2C. Therefore, neatly building a call-for-price culture can help with bonding as well as understanding your business partners.
Step 5: Make the order process faster
There is a common misconception that Magento Wholesale purchasing takes longer than B2C in a timely manner. It’s partly true, but the time-consuming part will not and should not be on your website.
The customer journey for a company looking to buy from wholesalers has much more to do with consideration than a conversion phrase. If you are doing the 3rd step right, you don’t have to worry about the choice of your customers. The only thing now is to make the purchasing much more fluent and easier.
To cope with that, we develop a smart ordering form and a feature that allows customers to add products right at the catalog. And let me tell you why you need both.
The more options you give for people to purchase, the more likely they will follow through with the process. Moreover, adding products right when the search begins is a powerful move, you make the life of B2B buyers much easier this way.
For the veteran tier of buyers, as they do their research first hand and have mapped out what they need to purchase, we have bulk buying option. All they need is a CSV file, load it to your Magento B2B commerce site, then the order will automatically be created. Right here, customers can find-n-fill the order faster and easier by SKU or by name.
This is without a doubt a killer selling point for any wholesales merchant, make sure you mention this one when negotiating with your customers as it’s a strong advantage for being your B2B partner.
Step 6: Make the order process more visual-focused
The better you present your product, the easier it is to convert. The configurable product is a wonderful convention by Magento but its rendered form is disappointing, to say the least. Therefore, we include the advanced display with customizable variables to help Magento B2B commerce to better their UX and UI parameter.
Such representation will make the communication about your sales policy as well as inventory for each variation clearer and more professional.
Step 6: Unleash the wishlist capacity
This is how you keep your Magento B2B feature list alive. The research of B2B buyers doesn’t stop at your site. With an unlimited wishlist, both in category and capacity, you’ll promote the buyers to dig deeper into your available in-store products.
As mentioned, your Magento Wholesale partners can create as many wishlists as they pleased, with the ability to update, to save, to add and to delete the product out of the list at will.
Step 7: Ensure the refund policy
Even though 100% satisfaction from the partner is the dream, there will be times that something goes off the road. Refund is often time-consuming and frustrating for both parties involved, that’s why we give you the option for store credit displacement. This is a good way to secure the relationship and keep the money flow within your site.
Following through, both shop owners and their customers can check back on the store credit score easily. The credit can be spent to buy the products of your site which both boosts your store credibility and authority.
Step 8: Allow quick reorder
It goes without saying that B2B buyers are looking for a long-term partner. And so are you as a wholesales provider. For such type of customer, you need to make their buying process much easier than ever, due to their typical purchasing behavior. To keep them coming back for more, we give you the ability to equip reorder on the site.
This addition is also on a must Magento B2B feature list, it will be a good point to convince your business partner to commit with your wholesales brand
Step 9: Update your B2B feature list constantly
The market is constantly changing and you don’t want to miss the chance to adapt to it. But that job is tedious and resource-burning to say the least if you don’t do it right.
That’s why you need to treat your Magento 2 B2B extension as an investment, as it brings you benefits with lifetime updates. That’s exactly what we’re doing with our plugin, once you purchase your B2B solution, you will have a lifetime update with additions to make your wholesales business stand out and prevailing.
I’ve given you a strip-down version of a B2B checklist to success. To further customize the Magento B2B feature list, head onto BSS Commerce’s B2B extensions division, you will not leave there disappointed.
Moreover, I and other blog writers on this site are always welcomed critical comments, both in the doubting and believing manner. So, head down to the comment below and shoot me a message.