Today I want to take you through 3 quick power tips that are going to help you implement wholesale into your business and also improve your chances of making that a success.
In the post below, we’ll discuss those power tips in detail but here is a quick summary of what we’re going to talk about.
- The first power tip is about why wholesale products are different.
- How you can apply wholesale pricing by your exact needs
- Why wholesale level customers may or may not need to see all of your products
- Why you should automatically enforce your wholesale agreements
- The second power tip is about keeping wholesale customers happy.
- We discuss how to create what I call a “7-star onboarding experience”
- Why you should be focused on removing friction from your wholesale ordering process
- How to localize the experience for your wholesale customers and why that is important for increasing revenue
- The third power tip is about hidden wholesale revenue opportunities in your wholesale business.
- Non-product based charges and charging accurately
- A trick you can use to increase average order size
- How to make wholesale specific sales coupons to encourage more orders
Let’s get started.
POWER TIP #1: Why Wholesale Products Are Different
Let’s talk about three important things: wholesale pricing, product visibility and enforcing your wholesale agreements.
Wholesale products are a little different from retail products in that:
- They’re often priced quite differently and at larger quantities
- Not everyone needs to see them
- There are certain agreements that you have made with your wholesale customers that affect the way they can buy them
How you can apply wholesale pricing by your exact needs
In WooCommerce Wholesale Prices Premium you can price your products in a number of ways. It’s generally flexible enough to suit just about any type of wholesale pricing arrangement.
Fixed wholesale price
A fixed wholesale price is where you know the exact pricing you want to apply for that product on a wholesale basis. This is sometimes referred to as setting product-based pricing in our guides.
You can set this up by going to your individual product settings. This can be found on your admin Dashboard > Products > Hover over a product and click Edit.
If you’re to have the system price products for you based on a percentage you have a couple more options:
- Global Percentage Discount
- Product Category Percentage Discount
These options let you determine the wholesale price of a product dynamically using a percentage. Here’s an example of a product category with a 20% discount:
Lastly, if you also want to reward your customers for purchasing more of a particular item you can use Quantity-based discounts.
This checks the quantity of the item in the cart and applies a tiered discount. You just tell the system what the discount structure is and it will take care of it.
If you need to shift large volumes of certain products this is a great way to reward your wholesale customers for ordering more.
More information on wholesale pricing
We have a full guide on all the different options for setting wholesale pricing which I consider a must-read. It’s a great resource that will show you more detail about how each option works.
Another article you might find interesting is where we discuss how to set wholesale pricing vs. retail pricing. In it, we go through wholesale pricing theory and what your options are for determining the wholesale price of your products.
Why wholesale level customers may or may not need to see all of your products
Another major difference is how visible your wholesale products are to customers. After all, not all products need to be visible to every type of customer. Remember that retail and wholesale customers are very different.
There are four options for controlling the visibility of your products between retail and wholesale customers:
- The “Only Show Wholesale Products To Wholesale Users” global setting
- The “Restrict To Wholesale Roles” visibility options on products themselves
- Making a variation “Wholesale Only” on individual variations
- The Permissions & Filters settings on the order form
The global setting for only showing wholesale products controls what your wholesale customers see. Meaning if a product doesn’t have wholesale pricing it will hide that product from the wholesale customer.
You’d want to do this if you need to make sure that wholesale customers don’t buy anything except for products that are available with wholesale pricing.
The second option is about restricting products themselves. You’ll find that after installing WooCommerce Wholesale Prices Premium you will have a new setting under the Publish box on your store’s products.
You can use this to restrict a whole product to specific wholesale user roles only. This will hide it from retail customers.
If you are using variable products you’re also able to restrict specific variations to wholesale roles in much the same way, by selecting which wholesale roles should have access to that variation.
This can be handy for setting “bulk” variations where you sell it in larger quantities. For example, if you had a store selling dog treats and you had a product of “a pack of dog treats” for retail customers in 100g, 500g, and 1kg packets, you might add a variation for a big 20kg box but only make it visible for wholesale customers only.
The last visibility setting is actually to do with the WooCommerce Wholesale Order Form and controlling what products show up on that interface.
The order form is a one-page highly optimized interface make specifically for super-fast wholesale ordering.
In the order form’s settings, you can control which user roles are allowed to see the form. You can also filter the products that show on the form by category or by specific products.
Please check out this knowledge base article for more information about product visibility options in the tools. It will take you through all of the options above in more detail.
Why you should automatically enforce your wholesale agreements
The final way you should be addressing the differences between wholesale customers and retail customers is by enforcing any minimum requirements on your wholesale agreements.
Wholesale agreements are there for a reason. You want to make sure that your wholesale customers are living up to their end of the bargain. After all, they are getting privileged pricing for your products. They should be ordering over a certain amount each time.
To enforce this you can use both product-based minimum amounts and minimum order requirements.
The former will set a minimum on an individual product which acts like a threshold they must add to their cart before they are able to get their wholesale pricing for that product. If they don’t meet that minimum they don’t get the wholesale price, they’d have to pay retail.
Likewise, you can set order-based minimum amounts. The customer must have a certain number of products in the cart and/or a minimum subtotal for their order as a whole.
Again, if they don’t meet those minimum requirements they will get retail pricing instead of wholesale pricing. This ensures they can still check out, but just without the adjusted pricing.
If you want to stop them from checking out altogether until they meet the minimums you can do that as well.
POWER TIP #2: Keeping Wholesale Customers Happy
Keeping your wholesale customers happy will lead to more revenue in the long run. Happy customers order more – this is a basic rule of thumb when it comes to dealing with wholesale sales.
I want to cover 3 specific things that can help you keep your wholesale customers even happier from right at the beginning.
Creating a 7-star onboarding experience
Onboarding starts when your customers realize you have a wholesale program.
It’s everything from your landing page, to your sign up form, to your approvals process and beyond into product education and making their first order.
Close your eyes for a minute and imagine what a 5-star experience might be for your customer as they’re coming through your signup, approval process, and placing their first order.
Here’s an example of what a 5-star experience might look like:
- They might see a thoughtful and information-rich landing page telling them about the benefits of being a wholesale customer.
- They then see a registration form that is not too long but collects all the important information they need to give.
- When they register they get an email telling them it’s been received and someone will get back to them within the day.
- Once the admin approves the new wholesaler they get an email saying they’ve been approved. It even includes a coupon for their first order and a link to instructions on how to make their order and get familiar with the ordering process. This helps set their mind at ease and tells them what to do next.
- They click the link to login and immediately see a quick ordering interface. They’re surprised at how fast it is to order what they need.
- They go to the checkout and are surprised again to see that all their personal information is pre-filled out in the checkout form they apply the coupon they found in the welcome email and checkout.
Now let’s repeat the same process but imagine what a 10-star experience might be. This is where you really go crazy and let loose with crazy ideas. Think about what you might do if the Queen came to register for your wholesale program.
Some examples of how you can think outside the box:
- When the customer hits the register button, they instantly get an email to confirm their submission. Then within 60 seconds, a customer onboarding specialist will call them to confirm their submission and walk them through the rest of the onboarding.
- Sophisticated AI will be used to determine the approximate annual revenue of the company and will put them into a specific tier in the wholesale program suitable to their buying power.
- A physical welcome package will be delivered to their place of business via delivery drone within 2 hours which will contain a commemorative certificate signed personally by the CEO, a fold-out cardboard display stands they can use in their store, some free products, ordering instructions, and more.
Lastly, let’s dial it back down a bit and come back down to earth creating what I call a 7-star experience.
We take the 5-star experience and combine it with some of the cool but doable ideas from your 10-star experience and see what you’re actually able to do to make things just that little bit better than expected.
- In our 5-star example, maybe instead of having them go back and find the coupon to use on their first order coupon is already applied automatically. That would be an unexpected and appreciated touch. You can do this with Advanced Coupons.
- The customer receives a physical welcome package by standard mail. It contains marketing materials, instructions on how to order, and sample products.
- A customer support agent will call the customer on the day that they submitted their registration form to chat about their business and get them onto the right tier in the wholesale program.
Doing this kind of creative thinking exercise can help you build a better experience for your customers and get you thinking outside of the box.
Removing friction from your wholesale ordering process
Removing friction from any kind of process is almost always a good thing.
This can take many forms:
- Removing unnecessary steps or clicks
- Providing everything they need in one spot
- Pre-filling fields
- Removing fields
When it comes to your wholesale customers, you have to remember that 99% of the time they’re just there to make an order. This might be just one thing among 100 tasks they have on their list for that day.
One easy way you can do this is by providing optimized ordering interfaces. Your customers will thank you for making this small task painless.
I encourage you to take advantage of things like the combination dropdown boxes for variable products that we have on our order form plugin.
For example, when a variable product has 3 attributes a form with 3 drop down boxes means a minimum of 7 clicks just to add that one product to the cart!
WooCommerce Wholesale Order Form’s combination variation boxes, where the variations of a product are placed into one selector box, would reduce this just 3 clicks – that is nearly 60% faster!
Another tip is to look at what kind of information you are collecting at the checkout.
Your checkout page is a great place to optimize because it’s a key friction point. The fewer fields you have here the better. If you can also make changes to make it clearer or shorter that will help your conversion rates due to decreased user input and frustration.
Localizing the experience for your wholesale customers
Do you have wholesale customers who are outside of your country? Many store owners do. If you are only serving those people in your own currency and language you’re missing an opportunity to wow them.
If you put yourself in their shoes wouldn’t it be great to be able to check out in your own currency and even language?
Aelia’s WooCommerce Currency Converter provides a way for store owners to provide not only pricing in their currency but also to have the customer actually checkout in their currency as well (many other solutions only go halfway and don’t allow checkout in the currency).
Likewise, you can use a tool like WPML to handle language translation across your whole site. This lets you provide alternative language translations for your product and key pages.
If you are not able to do the currency translation as well due to banking constraints I highly encourage you to do the language one, the time and cost investment will pay you back quickly.
POWER TIP #3: Hidden Wholesale Revenue Opportunities
It’s easy to add wholesale to your existing WooCommerce store with Wholesale Suite. But did you know that there are hidden wholesale revenue opportunities as well?
That’s right, you could be making a lot more revenue from your wholesale business just by making a few key changes to the way you’re doing things.
Non-product based charges and charging accurately
The price you quote for your products at a wholesale level is just the start of the process. It tells the customer what they’re paying for the product only.
Many store owners try to treat wholesale in the same way as retail and give shipping for free or cheap.
Additionally, they don’t think about surcharges that are applied to them on the payment gateways. These can add up to a significant amount for larger orders.
These are costs you can and should consider passing on to your wholesale customers. It will help you level out these surcharges that you’re getting hit with and even make money on them.
In WooCommerce Wholesale Prices Premium, you can restrict shipping methods for specific user roles by mapping the shipping method to a particular user role. This means you can more accurately charge your shipping costs to the customer.
You can also restrict wholesale customers to specific payment gateways as well.
This can be handy for providing wholesale only gateways, like an invoice option on checkout, bank transfer, or even just to stop them using a particular option like Afterpay or other similar consumer lending gateways.
Lastly, there’s the option to introduce a surcharge on particular payment types. For example, it is very common to introduce a 1-2% surcharge on credit card payments for large wholesale orders to cover the costs of processing the order via the gateway.
A trick you can use to increase average order value
One way to make more money from your wholesale program is to look at ways to increase your average order value (AOV).
You can do this effectively for wholesale customers by implementing a higher minimum order subtotal.
We’ve already discussed the minimum order requirements above. I highly recommend you set one for your wholesale customers, but here’s what we’re talking about the specifics of how to implement it properly.
If you want to incentivize wholesale customers to make larger orders you can do this by introducing tiers into your program.
- Standard Wholesale
- Wholesale Gold
- Wholesale Platinum
If customers are willing to agree to a higher minimum order subtotal amount, you can bump them up to the next tier which grants them slightly cheaper pricing.
In this way, you are guaranteeing larger order sizes and more throughput in exchange for slightly cheaper pricing.
How to make wholesale specific sales coupons to encourage more orders
Everyone loves a deal, even wholesale customers!
But how do you make coupons that are wholesale specific? And also, how do you do the opposite and make coupons that wholesale customers are not allowed to use?
The answer is Advanced Coupons which adds the ability to restrict the usage of coupons to specific user roles.
Likewise, you can also exclude user roles meaning it is now very easy to create coupon deals just for your wholesale customers and coupon deals just for your retail customers.
What kind of deals should you make for wholesale customers?
While you can’t be quite so aggressive with your deals to wholesale customers than retail customers you should be able to come up with some creative ideas to get them excited.
Here are some examples:
- Run a BOGO style deal (Buy X Get X). Make it so that you’re giving every 10th or 20th item free. Eg. Buy 9 20kg Boxes Of Dog Treats Get 1 Free
- Try giving free samples of products when purchasing something else. Eg. Free sample size with every 50kg bulk pack.
- Use a small time-limited discount to encourage orders in a specific category of items. Eg. 10% off all Shoes until Friday). This can be very helpful when meeting end of month targets.
I hope you have enjoyed these power tips and can use them in your business to apply your wholesale pricing in the best way possible for your business, create happier wholesale customers, and generate more revenue from hidden opportunities.
If you ever need assistance with any of the Wholesale Suite products please don’t hesitate to reach out.