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All-in-one Commerce: Shopify Introduced B2B Integrated with DTC in One Store

All-in-one Commerce: Shopify Introduced B2B Integrated with DTC in One Store

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Olya Kryvonos
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Shopify's business-to-business functionality has evolved from a limited B2B offering available through its wholesale channel to a significantly more mature platform that allows a single site to serve both direct-to-consumer and business-to-business customers. As a result, merchants now have more leeway in organizing their B2B businesses.

Let's go back in time to look at the evolution of Shopify B2B and then see what the e-commerce platform has to offer its B2B merchants today.

The backstory

Shopify's business-to-business functionality has evolved from a limited B2B offering available through its wholesale channel to a significantly more mature platform that allows a single site to serve both direct-to-consumer and business-to-business customers. As a result, merchants now have more leeway in organizing their B2B businesses.

Over the years, they've tackled challenges for merchants by making their e-commerce admin easier to use, introducing their own payment provider - Shopify Payments, assisting entrepreneurs through Shopify Capital, and increasing merchants' fulfillment capabilities with the Shopify Fulfilment Network.

And while the majority of the attention has been directed toward its online capabilities, Shopify has made significant advancements to its Point of Sale (POS) system, Shopify POS. The fact that Shopify POS uses the same customer and inventory records as the online sales channel is one of the most apparent benefits of using this software.

In addition to recent enhancements made to their direct-to-consumer (D2C) online platform and offline point-of-sale (POS), Shopify has historically had some limitations that have made it difficult for business-to-business (B2B) merchants to leverage the platform in the same ways that they are used to.

To be more specific, Shopify has traditionally not allowed the practice of maintaining different pricing catalogs for each organization or organizational location, which is a typical method of doing B2B business.

Even though Shopify Plus merchants had access to the wholesale sales channel, which provided rudimentary pricing customization via tags and pre-set lists at the user level, it required significant manual maintenance.

Furthermore, because the main storefront was inaccessible to wholesale customers, businesses needed to set up a second storefront for them. One of the most significant limitations was that wholesale channel shops were not organically indexable in Google or Bing, making it more difficult for wholesale retailers to acquire new wholesale clients.

In recent years, Shopify has been attempting to strengthen B2B e-commerce by acquiring Handshake and Deliverr.

Handshake is a business-to-business (B2B) online marketplace where vendors can sell wholesale to direct-to-consumer (D2C) retailers. Although Handshake only covers the US market, Shopify aims to expand it.

source: handshake.com

In May 2022, Shopify announced the acquisition of Deliverr, an end-to-end fulfillment platform. This acquisition has simplified logistics, one of the most challenging aspects of running a modern business.

Shopify B2B - big announcement in 2022

Shopify officially released its new B2B capabilities this summer which expanded the Wholesale functionality and gave a more integrated environment available exclusively for Shopify Plus plans. Shopify Plus merchants can now use a new set of wholesale services designed solely for B2B businesses and incorporated directly into the platform's core. It implies that merchants can manage their whole e-commerce operation - B2B, D2C, or both - in one location.

Let's look at the new capabilities of B2B businesses in Shopify.

  • Companies’ profiles

Retail customers usually have the same shopping experience: they see the same site, the same items, and the exact pricing. B2B buyers, on the other hand, require distinct experiences. Some companies can negotiate better pricing and conditions than others. Therefore a seller doesn't want the companies to access all this information. For this, Shopify allowed B2B businesses to create companies' profiles and customers’ accounts - up to 10 clients per each. These users will be able to access only their personal storefront information.

source: shopify.com
source: shopify.com
  • Custom Price Lists

Adding to the point mentioned above, pricing for business-to-business transactions is considerably more complicated than for direct-to-consumer transactions. With B2B on Shopify, retailers can easily change the currency and build variable pricing lists for their items and product variants. This feature allows sellers to manage intricate international B2B e-commerce successfully.

source: shopify.com
  • Payment Terms

It’s the ability to automatically apply payment terms to orders in the admin, allowing merchants to make payment terms accessible for clients.

  • No-password login

New login method eliminates passwords. Customers can now authenticate using their email addresses to get a 6-digit verification number for entering a store.

source: sunriseintegration.com
  • Self-Serve

Customers can easily manage their accounts through self-serve, choose the business location where they purchase from, amend buyer information, and review order histories.

  • B2B Checkout

Now merchants can create a simplified and personalized experience for wholesale clients by automating and customizing the checkout process with net payment terms, payment options, and wholesale discounts.

  • B2B analytics

Application of B2B-specific filtres will allow separate analysis of B2B and DTC in one store.

  • Integrations

Marchants can link their wholesale stores to ERP, CRM, or other vital systems with access to APIs.

Shopify ERP partners
B2B and Zapiet

Here at Zapiet, we`ve always aimed to improve B2B merchants’ experience. Store Pickup & Delivery can be easily integrated with wholesale tools like Wholesale Club and All in one. Also, for enterprise clients, we have an Enterprise plan that works for businesses with up to 250 locations and high order volumes. In this plan, all enterprise clients have a dedicated account manager, technical support, access to APIs, and custom SLA.

Thanks to Shopify's integral wholesale functionality, you can now manage and expand both the B2B and D2C sides of your business from a single platform and access the customization and tools that empower you to build the storefronts your customers need. Take advantage of all-in-one commerce by Shopify, and here at Zapiet, we will have your back with the most potent in-store pickup and local delivery tool, Store Pickup + Delivery, to ensure efficient order fulfillment and customer satisfaction.