The ability to set specific user tiers is arguably one of the handiest Ecommerce features that business-to-business (B2B) webstores can take advantage of. So, it’s somewhat of a shame that so many online businesses fail to utilize this valuable customer management tactic.
When it comes to Magento, there are plenty of user tier and segmentation options for stores to take advantage of. After all, Magento is one of the most expansive and intuitive Ecommerce platforms out there due to its broad suite of default management features, and countless additional features that can be provided through third-party extensions.
But at the same time, with so many tools available, it’s easy for Magento users to ignore some of the incredible abilities available to them, even when they can dramatically improve the performance of their online business.
So, What are User Tiers?
The assigning of user tiers is a segmentation method that separates the customers visiting your website into different, more manageable, groups. Once assigned, customers of a certain tier can be overseen all-at-once, which is invaluable when organizing your website’s registered users to match your Ecommerce strategy.
User tiers are most commonly applied to the customers of B2B Ecommerce stores that sell products marketed toward other businesses. This is because, generally, a B2B webstore needs a customer account to be created before prices can be seen and purchases can be made.
By default, Magento allows for three different kinds of customer groups: General, Wholesale, and Not Logged In. However, more tiers can be added manually, and there are ample extensions on the Magento marketplace which enable further user tier features.
Why Implement User Tiers on your Magento Website?
Being able to define and segment your customers into tiers dependent on their store behavior, or user information such as their location and tax class, is a substantial tool for any Ecommerce website.
From segmenting users based on their likelihood of making a purchase, to dividing customers by how closely their online behavior meets your sales strategies, the advanced monitoring and management capabilities user tiers provide are too beneficial for any determined Ecommerce business to pass up.
Among their many benefits, a webstore can apply user tiers to:
•Distinguish between Business and General Users
Webstores that sell to both businesses and the general public can set price differences between the normal costs for typical consumers, and the wholesale prices made available to business accounts. This ensures that the appropriate listings are only viewable by the registered customers who are supposed to see them.
•Streamline and Improve Marketing Campaigns
Setting user tiers based on relevant customer information helps you effectively lead targeted marketing campaigns that focus products toward your customer’s specific interests. Segment users into groups based on their purchase history and browsing behavior to make sure the right products are marketed to the people they will appeal to most.
•Create and Employ Incentive Programs
User tiers can be used to distinguish between customers who opt-in to a website’s memberships, and those who don’t. This allows any Ecommerce business to employ alluring incentive programs that inspire repeat business through exclusive offerings and prices.
2 Effective Magento Extensions to Improve User Tier Management
Magento has tons of extensions available that build upon the functionality of its platform, including improvements to its user segmentation. While it’s true there are already some tiering features that come with Magento’s basic installation, users can get much more out of their Ecommerce by searching for the right extensions.
Extensions such as:
Order Approval Manager
The browsing and ordering of products from B2B webstores is handled differently than with typical business-to-consumer operations. Generally, these processes require any purchase suggested by an employee to be approved by a manager who then makes the payment.
Unfortunately, this request and approval process is not naturally supported by Magento. That’s where Order Approval Manager comes in.
The Order Approval Manager extension from CreativeMinds allows customers to fill out a full order, then forward the complete information to someone else for approval and purchase. Once a purchase is requested, a notification is then sent to the party responsible for buying.
This is a wonderful way to give B2B webstores the ability to assign their business customers an appropriate user tier that lets them, and their employees, find products and create orders for their managers to review at a later time.
Multi User Account
This extension lets Magento users assign unique user tiers not just between customers, but their website’s own employees as well.
Normally, Magento accounts are only manageable by the single users who created them, but Multi User Account removes that limitation. It also gives you the power to assign internal employee user tiers that provide the needed permissions to perform specific website roles. At the same time, user tiers can be given restrictions that block employees from accessing other non-essential areas of your website.
This ultimately gives Magento store managers the ability to delegate tasks within their website while protecting it from the dangers of a single shared account.
Among its multiple modifiable permissions, this extension allows managers to assign employees control over creating orders, the monitoring of sales, management of profile information, and the editing of other employee accounts.
It also has a convenient “Send Cart for Approval” feature, so store managers can review the orders their employees suggest before purchasing, just as business account employees do when shopping on your B2B webstore.