If you run an online business that sells to both the general public and wholesale customers, there’s no WooCommerce wholesale option to distinguish between the two.
In fact, in a default WooCommerce store, there’s no way to differentiate prices based on customer type. Nor is there an option to moderate wholesale accounts. You’d need to create an entirely separate site to cater to the needs of your wholesale business partners.
However, there is a much easier way. With the help of a WooCommerce wholesale plugin, you can keep your existing store while adding a hidden wholesale section that only wholesale users can access.
By the end of this article, you’ll learn how to drive up revenue from your online store by creating a private wholesale area using the Woocommerce Wholesale Pro plugin from Barn2.
This wholesale plugin provides an easy way to:
- Moderate and approve new wholesale accounts.
- Create unlimited wholesale roles, each with its own pricing.
- Display products in a wholesale-friendly manner.
- Set global or category percentage discounts.
- Install a bulk buying interface designed for wholesale.
What are the benefits of adding a wholesale section to your WooCommerce store?
There are a number of reasons to add a wholesale section to your existing public-facing WooCommerce store. Let’s look at some of the most obvious benefits of adding a dedicated B2B section to your site.
#1: Benefit from wholesale order automation
While you might be enjoying the smooth automated experience delivered by your customer-facing WooCommerce store. You might have developed a large list of wholesale customers who place challenging orders.
For example, you might have to enter orders manually through your site because there’s no option to offer a wholesale price.
By installing a dedicated wholesale plugin, you can benefit from the same backend experience you enjoy with your public customers. You can put your wholesale orders on autopilot and focus on fulfillment instead.
#2: Take public and wholesale orders from the same website
Many online stores set up entirely different websites to serve their wholesale customers. Some even set up multiple sites to meet the needs of each specific group of wholesale customers.
We don’t need to tell you how inefficient this is. The cost of running several websites soon starts to stack up. A much easier solution is to use a plugin that allows you to create multiple self-contained stores on a single website, allowing you to significantly streamline your operations.
#3: Create a streamlined wholesale purchasing experience
Selling to the public and other businesses are very different propositions. Established wholesale partners don’t need to be bombarded with offers or waste time navigating your customer cross-selling process.
They know precisely what they need, the quantity they want to purchase, and the price they’re expecting to pay. If you don’t offer a quick and easy way for wholesalers to restock your products, they may think twice about continuing the relationship.
Which is the best wholesale plugin for WooCommerce?
There are a few options when it comes to WooCommerce wholesale plugins. However, we would argue that Woocommerce Wholesale Pro is the best.
It delivers several benefits, including the ability to create a 100% private wholesale store that can only be accessed by approved users with wholesale accounts. You can either create a completely hidden standalone B2B store or create a public retail store with a private wholesale area. The choice is yours.
Other benefits include the ability to:
- Create an unlimited number of wholesale roles.
- Match wholesale prices to specific accounts or set them globally.
- Allow automatic instant access upon approved wholesale accounts.
- Add wholesale prices to individual products.
Another unique feature of this plugin is that you can purchase it independently or as a bundle with WooCommerce Product Table. Using these plugins in tandem allows you to display the products in a more wholesale-friendly manner with straightforward wholesale order forms that dramatically speed up the bulk ordering process.
How to add a wholesale section to your website
With the benefits of adding a dedicated wholesale section to your WooCommerce store, let’s take you through the process of setting one up.
Step #1: Set up WooCommerce Wholesale Pro
To get started, you’ll need to head over to the Barn2 store and purchase the Woocommerce Wholesale Pro plugin.
Once you’ve downloaded the plugin, take the following steps:
- Go to Plugins > Add New > Upload Plugin.
- Choose the zip file you downloaded, upload it, and then click Activate.
- Once activated, you’ll need to enter your license key.
Once installed, the plugin will automatically create a Wholesale User role, a Wholesale Store page, and a Wholesale Login page. In other words, you’ll already have 90% of the work taken care of in the blink of an eye!
However, you can implement several optional configurations, so let’s quickly walk you through them.
Step #2: Configure registration and user roles
If you wish, you can choose whether to allow registration for your wholesale store.
To do simply follow these steps:
- From your dashboard, head over to WooCommerce > Settings > Wholesale > General.
- Choose whether or not to allow new users to register for the wholesale store.
- If you enable wholesale registration, then:
- The Wholesale Login page will also include a registration form.
- You can choose whether new wholesalers can access the wholesale area immediately or whether their customer account will be held for moderation by an administrator first.
If you disable wholesale registration, then you can still add wholesalers manually via the WordPress admin.
Step #3: Configure wholesale prices and discounts
The next step is to add the correct pricing and discounts for your wholesale users. You can set different pricing for each wholesale role. This is ideal if you have different wholesale discounts for each distinct group of wholesale customers.
You can configure three sets of discounts: global percentage discounts, category percentage discounts, and product-specific discounts.
Global percentage discount
To implement a global percentage discount:
- From your dashboard head to WooCommerce > Settings > Wholesale > Roles.
- Set a percentage discount for each wholesale role.
Your chosen percentage will be deducted from the price of all products for users with that role, except for any products that have a category or product-specific discount.
Category percentage discount
To implement a category percentage discount:
- From your dashboard, head over to Products > Categories.
- Select a category.
- Scroll down until you see the Wholesale % Discount box.
- Set a percentage discount.
- Repeat for each category.
Your chosen percentage will affect all products in that category and its sub-categories (except for any products where you have entered individual wholesale pricing).
Product-specific wholesale pricing
To implement wholesale pricing on specific products:
- From your dashboard, head over to Products > Edit Product > Product Data > General.
- Enter the wholesale price in the dedicated box.
- Save or Update the product.
(Note: this option is only available when you have enabled product-specific pricing in WooCommerce > Settings > Wholesale > Roles).
Step #4: Adding wholesale order forms
With the wholesale prices set, it’s time to create and optimize your wholesale ordering experience. Remember, you don’t want the retail-style layout that your traditional customers prefer with large photos and persuasive copy.
It’s essential to differentiate your wholesale offering from your public storefront. Your key objectives should be speed and ease of use. That’s why we recommended using WooCommerce Product Table.
This plugin is designed to work specifically with WooCommerce Wholesale Pro and allows your wholesale customers to populate an order form using a table layout for maximum efficiency. It will allow your customers to navigate from logging in to checking out in no more than a few minutes.
A product table wholesale layout also provides an easy way for B2B customers to reorder their regular products by saving their favorites as a quick reorder list.
How to edit the visibility of your wholesale prices
Most store owners won’t willingly broadcast their wholesale prices to their retail customers for obvious reasons. So you’re going to want to configure your store to ensure that no one sees prices they shouldn’t.
The first thing to note is that, by default, all the products in your WooCommerce wholesale store are available to everyone. Public customers see the standard price for each product, while wholesale users see the correct price for their role.
If you prefer, you can choose whether each category of products is visible to public users or wholesalers only.
You can easily do this by:
- Selecting Products > Categories.
- Scrolling down until you see the Visibility options displayed on the left-hand side.
- Choosing your visibility preferences:
- Public and wholesale – everyone can see these products.
- Wholesale only – only those with wholesale user roles can see them.
- Public only – only visible to retail customers.
- Clicking Update to save the visibility settings.
The last step you need to take care of is the navigational element of your wholesale store.
Some WooCommerce wholesale stores add a wholesale login link to their public website, while others keep this private.
You can add a link to the ‘Wholesale Login’ page to your menu or anywhere else on your site (e.g., the footer).
Alternatively, if you don’t want people to know you have a wholesale section, you could merely send out login links to your distributors via email.
Once inside, the WooCommerce Wholesale Pro plugin shows or hides your menu links based on user roles automatically, so they only see the correct links for their role.
For instance, public customers will see the link to the Wholesale Login page, but they won’t see any other links to wholesale-only content. However, if a wholesale user logs in, the menu changes to hide any public-only links and displays the wholesale-only content.
Plugins to use with WooCommerce Wholesale Pro
The other great thing about the WooCommerce Wholesale Pro plugin is that it works seamlessly with other helpful plugins. With that in mind, let’s take a brief look at which plugins to use in tandem with WooCommerce Wholesale Pro.
WooCommerce Delivery Slots
WooCommerce Delivery Slots is a plugin that allows your customers to choose a convenient delivery or pickup date. By combining WooCommerce Wholesale Pro with WooCommerce Delivery Slots, you can customize the wholesale purchasing experience even further by offering specific slots for delivery.
When selling to other businesses, delivery during business operating hours is essential. Giving your wholesale customers flexibility also represents an excellent way to differentiate yourself from competitors.
You even have the option to tailor your availability based on shipping zones and ZIP/postcodes, so you can expertly manage customer expectations.
WooCommerce Quantity Manager
Sometimes when dealing with wholesale customers, you’ll need to put in place minimum order quantities to ensure that you protect your profit margins. When you pair Wholesale Pro with WooCommerce Quantity Manager, you can ensure this happens by setting quantity rules based on user roles.
You can also stipulate that orders increase in specific multiples to maintain efficiency with your fulfillment. For instance, if your products are shipped with a dozen per box, you can ensure that no wholesale customer ever places an order that isn’t 12, 24, or 36, etc.
Add a wholesale section to your WooCommerce store with ease using WooCommerce Wholesale Pro
There’s no need to go through the effort of setting up a separate WooCommerce wholesale store for your business. By installing Woocommerce Wholesale Pro, you can set up a 100% private wholesale store within a matter of minutes without impeding your existing public retail site.
Better still, you have the flexibility to set WooCommerce wholesale prices based on user role and display products in a wholesale-friendly manner with the help of WooCommerce Product Table.
So if you’re an online business that sells to other businesses as well as retail customers, head over to the Barn2 store today to get started.