Are you looking for ways to create a combined B2B & B2C store on the Shopify store? If so, you’re on the right path. Running a combined B2B & B2C store can bring a lot of business opportunities and maximize profits. But sometimes it can also be tricky to get right due to multiple factors involved such as setting up of wholesale / b2b discounts, product pricing, shipping costs, etc.
In this blog post, we will provide a step-by-step guide that will help you create a successful combined B2B and B2C store on Shopify. We will also share some tips along the way to improve overall functionality and customer experience on your Shopify store.
So, let’s get started!
What is a B2B and B2C?
Briefly, a B2B (business-to-business) company usually sells its products and services to other companies. A B2C (business-to-consumer) company, on the other hand, sells products or services to an individual or direct consumers.
Does Shopify allow you to run a combined B2B and B2C store?
Yes, Shopify does allow you to run a combined B2B and B2C store on their platform and in one single store. However, there are three different methods you can choose to run a successfully b2b/wholesale and b2c business.
- Running your separate wholesale / b2b store on Shopify’s “Handshake” platform.
- Upgrading your current Shopify store to a Shopify Plus plan to enable B2B features of Shopify.
- Installing a 3rd-party Shopify Wholesale App that offers the feasibility of running a B2B+B2C store.
We will discuss some of these in detail in the later part of this article.
Benefits of running a combined B2B & B2C store on Shopify
There are many benefits of having both types of Shopify stores under one umbrella.
The most obvious benefit is that you can reach out to two different markets with just one store. This means that you can save a lot of money on running and promoting two separate stores.
Furthermore, you can take advantage of the fact that many consumers are now open to buying products from businesses, and vice versa. This is especially true for products that are related to each other, such as in the case of office supplies. By having both types of products in one store, you provide your customers with an easier option to purchase one or multiple products based on the b2b and b2c offered discounts.
Another benefit is that you can use data from your B2C sales to improve your B2B sales (and vice versa). This data can help understand what type of products are selling well, what type of promotions work, etc. This information can then be used to improve the overall experience for your customers and help boost sales.
Finally, by running a combined B2B and B2C store on Shopify, you can take advantage of Shopify’s many features and integrations.
What are the challenges of running a combined B2B & B2C store on Shopify?
Running a combined B2B & B2C store on Shopify seems like an easy task but there are a few challenges that come across. These include:
- Creating a streamlined checkout process for both B2B and B2C customers.
- Managing inventory and shipping costs for both wholesale and retail orders.
- Password-protecting or hiding specific content on your Shopify store.
- Setting up different pricing and discounts for your products.
- Creating a seamless experience for both types of customers in a single store.
But you can overcome these challenges with careful planning and execution.
Methods & steps to create a combined B2B & B2C store on Shopify
Now that we have discussed the benefits and challenges of running a combined B2B & B2C store on Shopify, let’s take a look at how you can set one up.
Method 1: With Shopify Plus’ B2B Ecommerce Plan/Feature
If you have an existing store, simply upgrade your plan to Shopify plus to be able to access B2B features developed by Shopify developers and sell DTC and wholesale from a single store. If you don’t have an existing store, you can create one by signing up here: https://www.shopify.com
The Shopify Plus plan starts from $2000/month and it offers the following B2B features such as:
- Company Profiles
- Price Lists
- Payment Terms
- B2B Checkout
- Customer Accounts
- B2B Analytics
For more information, you can see this article by Shopify on B2B.
Method 2: With a 3rd-party Shopify Wholesale App
If you don’t want to upgrade your plan to Shopify Plus but still want to run a combined B2B & B2C from a single Shopify store, you can follow these steps:
To create a store for Shopify wholesale without Shopify Plus, you can add/install a 3rd-party app that offers this functionality. There are many wholesale apps available in the Shopify App Store, but we recommend using Wholesale Pricing Discount (WPD).
Wholesale Pricing Discount app is the only app available on the Shopify store that lets you choose the installation type and run the wholesale stores according to your needs. It allows you to create a Wholesale experience for your B2C and B2B customers by:
- Creating a separate Dedicated Wholesale Section (DWS), which later you can add as a menu item in your current B2C store.
- Customizing your existing store for wholesale discounts (in your current Shopify store’s theme) – allowing you to show discounts and pricing to your B2C and B2B customers from one store.
Here are some key features of the Wholesale Pricing Discount Shopify Wholesale App:
- Wholesale signup form
- Tiered/volume pricing
- Net term payments (Net30, Net60, etc.)
- Percentage and flat price discounts
- Discount coupons for manual orders
Now, let’s look at the steps to create a B2B & B2C combined store using the Wholesale Pricing Discount (WPD) app.
STEP 1: Add the WPD app to your store by clicking on Add app button
STEP 2: Go to the Apps > Wholesale Pricing Discount
Configure the app according to your B2B and B2C needs.
For more information visit their WPD help center here.
STEP 3: Select the app customization type
As we mentioned before, the Wholesale Pricing Discount app gives you two options to display your b2b and b2c store to your customers:
- with the Dedicated wholesale section (can be added as a menu item in your b2c store).
- with B2B/B2C combined store (installed in your current theme’s code).
Choose the desired customization type and follow the next instructions in the app dashboard.
That’s it! This is how simple it is to create a combined B2B and B2C store on Shopify.
How to make your combined B2B and B2C store successful?
One of the most important aspects to consider when running a combined B2B and B2C store is your branding. It’s important to have a cohesive look and feel throughout your website so that customers can easily identify your products and services, no matter which section they’re shopping in.
Consider using the same logo, colors, and font throughout your site, as well as similar product photography. If you have different target audiences for your B2B and B2C sections, you may want to create separate sub-brands for each one so that customers can easily tell them apart.
When it comes to pricing, it’s important to strike the right balance between making a profit and being competitive.
Do some market research to see what other businesses are selling similar products for what price, and then price your products accordingly. You may also want to offer discounts or wholesale pricing for bulk orders to encourage customers to buy more.
Regular promotions and discounts
Shoppers love a good deal, so it’s important to offer regular promotions and discounts on your website. This will not only help you move inventory, but it will also encourage customers to come back to your site.
You can offer discounts in several ways, such as through coupon codes, special sales, or loyalty programs. Just be sure to promote your deals prominently on your website so that shoppers are aware of them.
Another important factor to consider is shipping. If you’re selling physical products, you’ll need to decide how much to charge for shipping and whether or not you’ll offer free shipping for certain orders.
You may also want to consider offering expedited shipping options for customers who need their items quickly. Free shipping is often a great incentive for customers to make a purchase, so it’s worth considering if it’s feasible for your business.
Separate checkout process
A payment checkout process is essential for any running eCommerce business, but it’s especially important for B2B stores. If you’re running a combined B2B and B2C store then you should have two different options such as, for B2C customers – default Shopify checkout, and for B2B customers – a wholesale/net order checkout. This can be achieved using the 3rd-party Shopify checkout app(s).
Easy store navigation
Your B2B and B2C Shopify store should be easy to navigate for even non-technical users. Your customers should be able to find what they’re looking for with a few clicks.
To do that, use clear and concise labels for your menus and sub-menus, and include search functionality on every page so that customer is happy with surfing your Shopify store.
Including customer testimonials
To reduce the buying decision of your B2B and B2C customers on your store, you should include one or multiple customer testimonials.
If you have any positive reviews or testimonials from previous customers, be sure to showcase them prominently on your store. You can also include them in your product pages under the description or Add to Cart / Buy Now button.
Finally, it’s important to offer excellent customer support, no matter what type of store you’re running.
As you can see, it’s possible to set up a B2B and B2C combined store on Shopify. However, there are some things to keep in mind as you go about setting this up. We hope that following the steps and tips mentioned in this article will help you create a seamless combined B2B and B2C shopping experience for you and your customers that will drive sales and grow your business.