How to Start a subscription store with Magento?

How to Start a subscription store with Magento?

Ever since the success of Amazon Prime and DollarShave, selling subscription products online is a hot trend amongst online retailers. There would be countless eCommerce stores selling recurring billing products, hundreds of services helping you manage your subscription billing and several payment gateways charging your buyers’ card every month on your behalf. Selling subscription products has become a lot easier after launch of cloud and SAAS base subscription management services like ChargeBee, CrateJoy and Chargify.

In this post we will learn how to create a subscription store with Magento – the Most used ecommerce platform globally. In six steps we will show, how can you leverage the power of Magento to build a successful subscription business.

1. Prepare your product

Identifying the products and quantifying them for subscription needs is the first step and is half the battle won before launching a subscription business. You need to be smart in preparing an appropriate mix of products and volume while creating a subscription box. Isn’t selling socks on subscription quite a fascinating idea? Let’s see a brief list of products being sold on recurring billing online.

Elements

  • Shaving kits
  • Socks
  • Vitamins and Nutritions
  • Fresh Food
  • Medicins
  • Coaching, Tutorials and Education
  • Tea, Coffee, Alcohol
  • Educational and learning Kits
  • Pet food
  • Haircuts
  • Gluten free anything
  • Hobby Kits
  • Beauty supplies
  • Underwear
  • Tissue papers, Toilet Papers & Handkerchief
  • Toys
  • Music and Movies
  • Baby care

The list can go on and your product could also be the next big thing in the market if you can leverage the power of a subscription model effectively. You can always contact us to discuss your product and its “Subscription” possibilities. Plenty of our customers use recurring and subscription model to sell health supplements as you can see below.
Examples

2. Setup Magento

Though compatible subscription extensions are available for Magento 1 and Magento 2 both, we recommend to go with the M2, as M1 will go out of support in a future not too far. Once the magento is setup go for a theme that suits your business and products. You can buy a ready made theme from template monster or can hire a designer and developer to prepare a custom one for you. Here are some examples of a theme suitable for subscription model.

Template

3. Install and configure extension

Magento by default does not provide the facility to effectively sell products on subscription. To add this feature to your store you can purchase and download any of the following from Milople.

Recurring and Subscription Payment extension for Magento 1

Recurring and Subscription Payment M2 Extension for Magento 2

Both of them manages the stuff easily and lets you focus on building your business with our technology. The extension comes with installation support and a technical expert will setup the extension on your Magento store.

Once the extension is installed you can refer the user manual to configure the extension better. The common steps are
Setting up global configuration
Creating a Subscription plan
Creating Terms
Adding products to plan

It takes an average of 9 minutes to start selling a subscription product on Magento store with recurring payment extension by Milople. The extension which works on cron will process the payments to be processed on timely basis and will notify payment gateways to capture the amount at a defined time. The extension does this in a way such that the store fulfills PCI compliance.

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4. Market and keep expanding the product line

You can start with may be one or a few subscription products initially but experimenting is very much important. Keep working on optimizing the product, product mix and quantity. You have a great chance to introduce the sample of a new product with subscription box. That will help achieve two objectives together.

Will create test results for your new product
May help in increasing revenue by increasing cost of subscription product if customer likes your new sample.

There are stores that have customers who have been paying money to receive the subscribed items for more than 5 years. And at the same time there are businesses having high drop out rate.

You need to stay focused on your marketing, experimenting, and shipping in order to keep subscriptions alive.

5. Manage the payment failures

Yes recurring billing is rightly considered as one of the most successful business idea because of its repetitive nature. It avails the benefits of a large pool of loyal customers, chances of constant customer interaction and very high customer retention & engagement rate. But note that cash does not flow smoothly always. The extension for recurring and subscription payment will take care of gateway part to make sure payments are being processed in time. But there would be few cases where you will have to put some extra effort to get payments from your buyers.

  • Credit card expires and expired credit card can not pay subscriptions
  • Buyer accidentally terminates the subscription contract
  • Credit card got canceled or suspended for any reason
  • Insufficient credit limit at the time of payment processing
  • Credit card stolen and got blocked.

There would be X% of such payment failure cases depending on the nature of your business and you need to build a strategy to handle this. You may have your own in-house tele caller for recoveries or can hire third party dunning services companies as well.

But there is another way too. Charging all the subscription terms upfront. Yes this model of prepaid subscription is in practice and popular too. You can use Prepaid Subscription Payment Extension for Magento 2 and charge your customers upfront for all subscription terms.

With upfront payments you do your business peacefully and focus on better products and delivery. This may please the buyer and may make a loyalist to you for longer terms.

So what are you waiting for? 1..2..3..4..5”¦ and its you! The Winning You!

All the best for your eCommerce subscription store on Magento.

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