Estimated reading time: 8 minutes
Are you looking to create a B2B eCommerce website and start selling your products online? If so, you’ve landed at the right place! As a web development agency, we design and code websites for our clients. In our experience, we found that – to create a b2b eCommerce or wholesale website, Shopify is the perfect platform. It is also easy to manage and provides you with some great 3-party apps to make a perfect B2B eCommerce website/store. This blog post will walk you through the 10 steps necessary to create a successful B2B eCommerce website on Shopify.
Before starting, let’s first understand some B2B e-commerce.
What Is B2B eCommerce?
Briefly, B2B eCommerce is business transactions between two companies through an online platform. These can include anything from purchasing raw materials to selling finished products and services online. To set up a successful B2B eCommerce website, you will need to take into account the unique needs of your B2B customers.
Difference Between B2B And B2C eCommerce Stores?
The main difference between B2B and B2C eCommerce stores is that B2B customers are usually businesses or organizations that purchase products or services in large quantities, whereas B2C customers are individuals who purchase products or services for personal use.
B2B customers typically have more complex needs and requirements than B2C customers. For example, they may require custom pricing, product customization, and account management features.
Another key difference between B2B and B2C eCommerce is the target market. While B2C eCommerce sells its products and services to consumers, B2B eCommerce businesses sell their products and services to other businesses.
In addition, B2B customers are typically businesses themselves, so they will expect a different level of service than B2C customers.
Is The B2B eCommerce Business Model More Profitable Than The B2C Business Model?
There are a few key factors that you will need to take into account when deciding whether or not to create a B2B eCommerce website. The first is the profitability of the B²B eCommerce business model.
While it is true that B2C businesses have the potential to reach a wider audience, the margins in B2B are usually much higher. This is because B2B customers are typically willing to pay more for products and services that are tailored to their specific needs.
Another factor to consider is the competition in your industry. If there are already several successful B2C businesses operating in your space, it may be difficult to compete. However, if you can identify a niche market that is underserved by the existing B2C businesses, you may have a better chance of success.
The last factor to consider is the quality of customer service you can offer to your B2B customers. As we mentioned earlier, B2B customers expect a different level of service than B2C customers. If you are not prepared to meet these expectations, it may be best to stick with the B2C model.
Now that we have a basic understanding of what B2B eCommerce is and how it differs from B2C, let’s take a look at the steps necessary to create a successful B2B eCommerce website on Shopify.
Steps To Create A B2B ECommerce Store On Shopify
These are the steps required for creating a B2B eCommerce website and selling wholesale on Shopify:
- Choose Your Domain Name
- Sign Up for a Shopify Plan
- Find a Theme
- Add Your Products
- Set Up Payment Methods
- Configure Shipping Methods
- Create Discount Codes
- Install Apps from the Shopify App Store
- Set Up Google Analytics
- Launch Your B2B ECommerce Shopify Store!
Step One: Choose Your Shopify Plan
The first step to creating a B2B eCommerce website on Shopify is choosing the right plan for your business. Shopify plans include Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify. Shopify also offers a 14-day free trial.
If you’re just getting started with online selling, we recommend starting with the Basic Shopify plan. This plan gives you all of the essential features such as selling unlimited products, 2 staff accounts, manual order creation, discount codes, abandoned cart recovery, shipping labels, fraud analysis, and much more.
You can always upgrade your Shopify plan when you see more orders coming and your revenue is increasing.
Step Two: Select Your Domain Name And Hosting Provider
Now that you’ve chosen your Shopify plan, it’s time to select (or connect, if you already have it) your domain name and hosting provider. Your domain name is a kind of identity or you can say the front face of your business, so it’s important to choose something that relates to your business and is short and catchy. As for hosting, Shopify provides reliable hosting services for all of its users.
Step Three: Choose A Theme For Your Website
The next step is to choose a theme for your website. Shopify offers a wide selection of free and paid themes. If you’re unsure which theme is right for your website, we recommend checking out some popular options in the Shopify Theme Store.
Once you’ve found a theme you like, you can preview how it will look on your website before making your final decision.
Step Four: Add Your Products To Your Shopify Store
Now it’s time to start adding products to your Shopify store, You can add products manually or import them from a CSV file. If you’re just getting started, we recommend adding your products one at a time so that you can get a feel for how the Shopify platform works.
You can also group multiple products and create a collection of them or organize it into different categories (for example, if you’re selling 5 different t-shirts and 10 different jeans in your store, you can create separate collections for t-shirts and jeans)
Step Five: Add A Payment Method For Your Shopify Store
The next step is to add a payment method(s) for your Shopify store. Shopify supports a wide range of both online and offline payment methods. Some of the most popular options include credit cards, Stripe, PayPal, Razorpay, and Apple Pay. You can also offer customers the option to purchase products on your store using some coupon code and things like store credits and reward points.
You can add a 3rd-party gift card and loyalty app that will give you a customer loyalty program on your b2b store. Just search “gift cards” in the Shopify app store’s search bar.
Step Six: Set Shipping Rates For Your Shopify Store
The next step is to set shipping rates for your Shopify store. Depending on the products you’re selling, you’ll need to choose the right shipping carrier and shipping method. Shopify offers a built-in shipping calculator that can help you figure out the best way to ship your products.
Once you’ve configured your shipping methods, you can start setting up automated fulfillment so that orders are shipped out as soon as they’re placed.
Step Seven: Create Discount Codes For Your Shopify Store
Another great way to drive sales and promote your brand is by offering discount codes. Discount codes can be used to offer customers a percentage off their purchase, free shipping, or a gift with purchase.
You can create discount codes directly in the Shopify admin or use one of the many apps available in the Shopify App Store.
Step Eight: Install Apps From The Shopify App Store
The next step is to install apps from the Shopify App Store. There are thousands of apps available in the store, so it’s important to take some time to browse and find the ones that are right for your business.
Some popular apps include social media integrations, accounting software integrations, Shopify, and email marketing tools. Once you’ve installed your chosen apps, you can start using them to run your business more efficiently.
Step Nine: Connect Google Analytics With Your Shopify Store
The next step is to connect Google Analytics with your Shopify store. Google Analytics offers some great insights for eCommerce stores including the setting up of conversion goals, visitor counts on the specific product page, and much more. You can use these traffic and conversion metrics provided by Google Analytics to run your ad campaigns, and improve the website structure, and overall user experience. You can sign up for a free Google Analytics account and then follow the instructions in this article to add the tracking code to your Shopify store.
Step Ten: Launch Your B2B ECommerce Shopify Store!
You’ve now reached the final step: launching your Shopify store! Once you’ve completed all of the steps above, you’re ready to start selling online. We recommend finalizing your store before making it live to ensure everything is working as it should. Then, you can start promoting your store and driving traffic to it.
As you can see, there are some key differences between setting up a B2B eCommerce store and a B2C store. Luckily, Shopify offers an excellent platform that is well-suited for businesses of all sizes, especially those running eCommerce stores. If you consider starting or expanding your wholesale business online, just go with Shopify.
Have you had any success running a b2b or wholesale business on Shopify? Let us know in the comments below!