There are some businesses that operate solely as wholesalers. On the other hand, other companies have started working as hybrid B2C and B2B stores to detail a more comprehensive range of audiences. However, the real challenge here is to set up the perfect platform to facilitate all your customers, regardless of who they are.
With the help of WordPress and WooCommerce, you can easily set up your B2C store. However, you’ll need to use a wholesale plugin to create a store that can also deal with wholesale buyers. Apart from that, you’ll also have to devise the perfect strategy to reach out to your target audience and entice them to buy from you.
This blog will show you how to upgrade your B2C store to accommodate wholesale buyers and how to sell wholesale as a small business this year.
How to Set Up Your Wholesale Store?
To begin, we’d like to tell you that in order to sell wholesale online, you’ll have to use a good WordPress plugin like Wholesale for WooCommerce. With the help of this plugin, you’ll be able to give your website the required features to make it stand out as an online wholesale store.
If you are worried about whether you’ll be able to operate as a B2C after installing this plugin or not, then there’s nothing to worry about. This wholesale solution lets you deal with consumers and businesses who wish to buy in bulk. Here are the outstanding features of using this WordPress plugin.
- A private wholesale-only WooCommerce store
- Easy-to-use back-end interface
- Developer friendly and optimized
- No coding required
- Custom user roles and role-based pricing
- Wholesale sales dashboard & reports
- Tax, shipping & payment management
and much more.
If you have installed this plugin on your WP site, you’re on your way to establishing an operational wholesale store. However, we’ll go over a few vital strategies that teach you how to sell wholesale as a small business.
How to Start Selling Wholesale as a Small Business?
There are many ways to build your wholesale channel. However, some may require you to invest more in your business, so be prepared to choose your strategy. To help you out, we’ll cover both possibilities.
Get Listed on a Leading Online B2B Marketplace
One of the best ways to learn how to sell wholesale as a small business is by doing what all the leading wholesale companies do. Get your brand listed with the industry’s top dogs at a leading online B2B marketplace.
Though there are many marketplaces to choose from, you should stick with the top 3 or 4. Platforms like Alibaba, Made-in-China, and Global Sources should be top of your list. There are many other Alibaba B2B competitors to choose from if you are looking for more marketplaces.
A B2B marketplace will help you get the recognition you want. Also, listing your brand with other organisations will make your small business look credible. You can start generating leads in no time by getting listed on such platforms. Also, many B2B marketplaces offer premium services like quality lead generation, getting featured on their site to get more exposure, digital marketing services, and much more.
Also, if you plan on finding a suitable manufacturer for your products, you can connect with one on this platform.
Source Your Products
As a wholesaler, you’ll probably deal directly with manufacturers to buy products. This can either mean buying products the manufacturer regularly produces or working with them to create a custom product. You’ll have to share your design ideas if you are getting a custom product. After that, the manufacturer will send you a prototype that you can check and share your feedback regarding any adjustments. This process will go on until you get exactly what you want. After that, you’ll buy in bulk to sell online to other businesses.
Creating custom products is a great way to make your brand stand out in the industry. Also, as your product will be unique, it will help you add your brand to the product. As easy as it sounds, this process requires a lot of time and investment. Therefore, be sure that you are ready to invest the money and time it will require to finish your product. When sourcing your products, you need to keep the following things in mind:
- Turnaround Times – You must confront your manufacturer regarding how much time it will take for the initial order to complete. Also, how much time will it take to restock orders in the future? These questions will help you keep your goods in stock and initiate an effective inventory management system.
- Hidden Fees – You need to ask your manufacturers upfront about all fees and costs so that everything stays within your budget.
- Manufacturing Times – Find out how much time your manufacturer takes to produce your products.
- Shipping – discuss with your manufacturers regarding shipping costs and time. You can also discuss whether they offer free shipping or have minimum order requirements.
On the other hand, to speed up the process, you can just connect with a manufacturer to sell something they already produce. There are many Amazon businesses that are using this strategy to generate revenue. In this method, you find a product that’ll work for you and add it to your website. Get the order, and either deliver it from your warehouse if you have the stock, or request your manufacturer to process the shipment directly to save time.
Create a Pricing Strategy and Set MOQ on Your Store
Your pricing strategy can make or break your business—hands down! If you launch your products underpriced, you’ll lose profits and might not have enough to survive. On the other hand, overpricing your products will simply reduce your sales.
Usually, wholesalers set a margin of around 50%. That means, if the cost of your product is $10, then you’ll sell it at $20. The best thing about running a wholesale business is that your prices aren’t fixed. You can change the price if a retailer is ready to buy more. On the other hand, as your store has the ability to facilitate both B2C and B2B clients thanks to the WP plugin we mentioned earlier, you can also sell at retail price to those who only want a single unit. That way, you’ll have the power to sell at both price ranges.
However, you need to set a benchmark that’ll determine who is buying at a wholesale price and who is buying at a retail price. That benchmark is called the minimum order quantity (MOQ). Setting MOQs means a retailer must buy your product at a specific minimum amount to be eligible for the wholesale price.
Be Clear with Your Policies
As a small business, you need to be careful while dealing with businesses as you can’t bear the loss of an order or tolerate payment delays. In order to counter such issues, wholesale companies need to share a few terms like shipping fees, timelines, and order procedures. Here are a few things you need to mention in your wholesale terms sheet.
- Payment terms
- Minimum order quantity
- Return and exchange policies
- Order process
- Shipping and delivery
Though there are many things you can add to your terms sheet, these are the most important ones.
Photograph Your Products
Your product images will play a vital role in getting your first order. We are aware that small businesses will avoid many expenses, but you can’t expect to get an order with low-quality photos. Once you get a sample of your product, you should arrange a photoshoot that captures your product from every angle. Also, ensure all pictures are of high quality and cover every detail of the product.
Your images will be helpful in all areas. They’ll be used on your website, for social media marketing, to run paid ads, and to post on your store page at a B2B marketplace.
Trust Digital Marketing
You must trust digital marketing if you really want to learn how to sell wholesale as a small business. According to research, a B2B company spends the most money on website development (51%) and digital marketing (44%). Also, more than 50% of B2B buyers are millennials.
This clearly indicates that you need to invest in digital marketing to be able to generate leads and get recognized as a reliable online wholesale store. Experts have stated that B2B email marketing is still the best digital marketing technique as it yields the highest ROI. Yet, you need to spread your wings and work on all methods, especially content marketing and social media marketing. A few high-quality blogs and a well-maintained business page on LinkedIn can boost lead generation.
Learning how to sell wholesale as a small business is no walk in the park. It will require you to spend lots of time creating the right brand and marketing strategy. The tips mentioned above are crucial in helping you walk on the path to success this year.