Captains & Cowboys is a Shopify agency with a wealth of knowledge and experience in designing, developing, optimizing, and launching Shopify B2B and Shopify wholesale stores across a multitude of industries. We pride ourselves in helping B2B businesses and partners reach their long-term strategic goals and build a truly powerful wholesale ecommerce experience. From navigation, checkout, to shipping, we have the tools, APIs and integrations to transform B2B companies to reach their best potential and stand out from the competition.

WHAT IS SHOPIFY B2b and wholesale

Several approaches are available for B2B and wholesale on Shopify. You can offer a password-protected commerce storefront that functions as an extension of the main store, you can grow your business and take your brand to the next level by using Shopify’s dedicated B2B ecommerce channel. Alternatively, you can leverage Shopify’s newest B2B features that allow you to change prices and offer unique B2B experiences all from one single store. Shopify B2B features include the ability to create unique rates for specific wholesale customers, product bundles, volume based discounts, unique customer profiles and a portal or making specific products available to B2B customers that have wholesale accounts on the site.

The native Shopify wholesale features are only accessible through Shopify Plus, so be prepared to spend considerably more if you want to use this solution. A Shopify Plus plans costs $2000 per month to start, and the cost rises on a percentage of commerce sales as your company expands. One of the numerous advantages that the Shopify Plus platform would be having a dedicated Shopify Plus wholesale channel or built-in B2B features for your store. Other advantages include having endless customization, functionality, and automation possibilities through different Shopify apps. The number of B2B features and systems that the Plus plans offer to wholesale businesses do help justify the price tag with high-yield results.

If you do not have the budget for the Shopify Plus pricing plan though, it’s not all doom and gloom. There are B2B ecommerce workarounds available in which you can sell to other businesses – B2B Shopify wholesale apps provide a good alternative for companies looking to start.

WHy is shopify PLUS good for b2b and wholesale

Shopify and Shopify Plus are a powerful tool for B2B and Wholesale stores that integrate seamlessly with your business. Managing stores is considerably simpler with the B2B channel – you can spend too much time operating two (or more) distinct stores if you run a wholesale business in addition to your retail Shopify store, so combining this together makes the experience much more streamlined. If you opt for the native B2B features offered on Shopify Plus then you will only have one single store and update prices and the experience based on the customer visiting.

The inventory, orders, and all other customer data is also in one location on Shopify wholesale, enabling you to manage retail and wholesale clients from the same platform as your standard DTC customers. This maximizes efficiencies and allows your business to follow one seamless process – all managed via the Shopify platform.

Perhaps most importantly, using Shopify’s B2B functionality would enable you to operate a wholesale order center where clients can place orders whenever it was convenient for them. This will be especially helpful if you intend to start selling internationally or wholesale to companies and an audience in different locations or time zones around the world.

what are the b2b and wholesale features on shopify

There are a plethora of Shopify Wholesale and B2B commerce features that any merchant can benefit from. If you are just starting with selling to companies or don’t have enough sales from your existing store to justify the $2000 a month price tag for the Shopify Plus plan, there are a few more options to start selling products using a B2B solution without Plus. Some of the features included with Shopify B2B and Wholesale functionality include:

• Use one store but offer unique pricing options, products, customer lists & profiles (Shopify B2B). Easy management products and collections from one store with wholesale pricing manager.
• Alternatively, create a second multistore location, separate to your B2C or DTC store, where you only sell wholesale goods (Wholesale Channel).
• Make exclusive discount codes that you can distribute to wholesale customers or certain clientele.
• Offer volume based discount levels and rules to reward B2B customers when they purchase anything.
• Offer unique prices and specific price lists for different B2B customers.
• Provide net payment terms to your customers so they can pay as they usually would.
• Seamlessly integrate with Handshake marketplace.
• Manage large orders or credit limits.
• Offer a unique checkout experience with NET payment terms for B2B customers.
• Benefit from Shopify’s great features such as hosting and security for both DTC and B2B customers.
• Unlock a wholesale ready storefront for your buyers through B2B apps.

What are the limitations of using shopify b2b

The following factors should be taken into account before commerce merchants decide to utilize B2B in their operations:

•For access to B2B functionalities, new customer accounts must be created.
•Because Shopify B2B is new functionality, certain third-party applications may not have been updated to support it yet.
•Subscriptions cannot be implemented with B2B.
•There can only be up to 500 line items in any order. If an order consists of more than 500 different products or variants, it will be rejected from the wholesale system.

We also advise you to consider whether you feel you need an entirely separate storefront experience for your customers or whether pricing and product changes via your existing store are enough to manage the B2B side of your business.

b2b & wholesale shopify storefront and custom domain

Firstly, Shopify’s most recent B2B feature release is designed to function directly through your original Shopify Plus storefront. Meaning that the content and experience remains consistent however the pricing and b2b checkout options change based on the customer that is logged in. The benefit of this is that you do not need to manage multiple stores and the B2B store does not become a burden to your team. However there is not a native way to change content for B2B customers unless you employ a Shopify agency, who can write custom coding that creates dynamic content that appears only for B2B customers. Offer B2B directly from your existing store is great when you are getting started or even wish to trial B2B on Shopify Plus.

The more traditional step to B2B is to offer a separate password-protected store just for your wholesale clients. Shopify Plus offers a separate storefront known as the Wholesale channel. These types of protected pages are not visible on search results from search engines. Instead, they only provide wholesale or B2B purchasers access to the store if you have given a page link and they have their own customer accounts there. This means that normal retail customers won’t have access to this area of your website and won’t be able to place B2B orders there or take advantage of the special offers or personalized discounts you have set for others. With wholesale on Shopify, the platforms uses your existing store and changes all the price to match the B2B settings. So, this means you are only running a singular store and all the price settings update if a B2B customer logs in. If you are using Shopify Plus then you can leverage an expansion store instead of the wholesale channel however advanced development may be needed to achieve the features you require as a B2B merchant.

Additionally, Shopify Plus sellers can now give their b2b business stores a custom domain. Retailers can provide a branded customer experience across channels with a customized domain while also making it simpler for customers to locate their wholesale storefronts.

However, you should be aware that there aren’t many customization possibilities available through the wholesale storefront.

custom pricing, order limits & payment terms

The ability have full customization of the prices on the B2B site is the second best feature of Shopify Wholesale (and overall, the Plus plan). The specific Shopify wholesale channel allows you to:

• Set volume- or percentage-based price discounts.
• Specify fixed wholesale product prices for the goods.
• Have the option to set order restrictions for minimum and maximum quantities.
• Make several pricing lists with various prices for different types of B2B customers or customer groups.

While the volume discounts might help you draw in businesses, the minimum and maximum order limitations can help you manage the quantity amount of product that B2B customers can order. Additionally, you can use the pricing lists to extend a unique thank-you offer to your most devoted wholesaling customers by offering a pricing discount.

With payment terms, merchants can automate the manual procedure of draft orders in the admin page and assigning payment terms. With B2B & Wholesale on Shopify, you can specify the terms of payment. Then, keep track of, group, and collect payments for orders as they become due. As usual, the buyer chooses things to add to their cart, but this time the prices are those that you listed in your price list for that business. Payment terms for Wholesale & B2B on Shopify include are set to ‘None’ by default. At checkout, visitors immediately pay for their orders.

However, merchants can choose ‘Net’ (period) if they wish to allow customers to pay for orders at any time between the time the order is made and the due date. Net 7, Net 15, Net 30, Net 60, and Net 90 are the terms available to wholesalers. Merchants can also offer ‘Due on fulfillment’, whereby B2B customers can pay for orders at any time between when they’ve placed the order and when it is fulfilled. When all of the things in the order are delivered, that is when the money is due.

Streamlined account area

The account area on Shopify’s B2B channel are something that your wholesaler clients will like (and will also save you a tonne of time). They receive a unique login account and dashboard from Shopify, which they can use to make purchases, keep track of them, and place new orders without the need for additional assistance from you. Through their B2B account, they can place orders whenever they want, without having to speak to you directly to facilitate the sale. Additionally, they have access to all your store’s recent and ongoing data through their customer account, including order status, order history, tracking information, and bills.

The wholesale channel account area will give you and your clients access to all the information you require, saving you the time it would take to manage ordering and make a sale over the phone or via email, a massive benefit to your CRM. Of course, a bonus of having this feature is that resources can then be allocated to other more productive business operations such as marketing, research, and planning to grow your business further. With increased efficiency comes improved profits which again, makes the investment value in Shopify Plus B2B functionality that extra bit more worthwhile.