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How to sell access to the wholesale store

Instead of letting anyone register for free, some wholesale stores want to sell access to the private wholesale area. Users pay a fixed annual fee, which grants them access to the wholesale area and discounted pricing.

You can achieve this by using WooCommerce Wholesale Pro alongside some other recommended plugins as follows:

  1. Install WooCommerce Wholesale Pro in the usual way, and add discounts for your wholesale users. If required, you can use the plugin's other features to hide prices from logged out users or control who can see your product categories.
  2. Install the WooCommerce Memberships plugin. If you want to take recurring payments instead of a fixed one-off payment for accessing the wholesale area, then you should also install WooCommerce Subscriptions.
  3. Go to Products → Add New and create a product called 'Wholesale Store Membership' (or similar):
    • In the 'Product type' dropdown, select 'Simple product' if you are charging a fixed one-time price; or 'Simple subscription' or 'Variable subscription' if you have installed WooCommerce Subscriptions and are adding recurring payments.
    • Add the price that you wish to charge for accessing the wholesale store.
  4. Go to WooCommerce → Memberships → Membership Plans and create a membership plan:
    1. Give it a name.
    2. In the 'General' tab, select 'Grant access upon product(s) purchase and then select the product you just created.
    3. If you are using WooCommerce Subscriptions, then also use the 'Subscription-tied Membership length' section to link the membership with the subscription. That way, the user's access to the membership plan will be revoked if they let their subscription expire.
  5. Finally, install the free WooCommerce Memberships Role Handler add-on. Use it to automatically add everyone who buys the 'Wholesale Store Membership' product to the 'wholesale' user role.

When you have completed these steps, people will be able to visit your website and purchase the 'Wholesale Store Membership' product. This will automatically add them as a user with the 'wholesale' role, so they can log into their account and access the wholesale pricing.

If you use WooCommerce Subscriptions, the payment will be taken automatically at specified intervals (e.g. annually) and users will lose access to the membership level if they stop paying for their subscription.

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