Shipping is one of the most important aspects of running an online business. It's the final step in the customer journey, and it can make a big difference in whether or not a customer will come back to your store in the future.
That's why it's so important to get Shopify shipping right.
In this blog post, we'll cover everything you need to know about international Shopify shipping, from choosing the right shipping carrier to packaging your products for safe transport. We'll also include tips on how to save money on shipping and how to provide your customers with the best possible shipping experience.
So whether you're just starting out or you're looking to improve your shipping process, read on for everything you need to know about Shopify shipping.
What is Shopify shipping?
Shopify Shipping is a built-in shipping solution that allows Shopify merchants to buy and print shipping labels directly from their Shopify admin. It is integrated with major shipping carriers, such as USPS, UPS, and DHL, and offers discounted rates to Shopify merchants.
Shopify International shipping refers to the shipping and fulfillment services provided by Shopify, an e-commerce platform. It allows merchants to manage their shipping processes, including creating and printing shipping labels, calculating shipping rates, tracking shipments, and more, directly within the Shopify dashboard.
Features of Shopify Shipping
Key features of Shopify shipping include:
Shipping Labels: Merchants can create and print shipping labels for their orders directly from the Shopify admin.
Shipping Rates: Shopify provides real-time shipping rates from various carriers (like USPS, UPS, FedEx) based on the destination, package weight, and dimensions.
Fulfillment Integration: Merchants can choose to fulfill orders manually or use integrated fulfillment services, including third-party fulfillment providers and drop shipping services.
Order Tracking: Merchants and customers can track the status and location of shipments, providing transparency and peace of mind.
Discounted Shipping Rates: Shopify offers discounted shipping rates for certain carriers, which can result in cost savings for merchants.
Multi-carrier Support: Shopify supports various shipping carriers, allowing merchants to choose the best option for their specific needs.
Customizable Packing Slips: Merchants can include branded packing slips with their orders, providing a professional and cohesive customer experience.
Shipping Profiles: Merchants can set up different shipping profiles based on factors like weight, location, and type of product.
Shipping Zones: Merchants can define specific regions and countries where they offer shipping, along with corresponding shipping rates.
Returns Management: Shopify provides tools to manage the returns process, including generating return labels and tracking return shipments.
International Shipping: Shopify supports international shipping, allowing merchants to reach a global customer base.
Automatic Fulfillment: Merchants can set up rules for automatic order fulfillment based on specific criteria, streamlining the process.
How to Ship on Shopify?
Shipping on Shopify involves several steps. Here's a basic guide on how to set up Shopify shipping for your Shopify store:
Access Your Shopify Admin
Log in to your Shopify account and go to your admin dashboard.
Set up Shipping Zones
- In your Shopify admin, go to "Settings" and then "Shipping and delivery."
- Click on "Manage rates" for the shipping profile you want to edit or create a new one.
- Define the shipping zones (regions or countries) where you want to offer shipping. You can set up different rates for each zone.
Choose Shipping Services
Select the carriers and shipping services you want to offer. Shopify integrates with various carriers like USPS, UPS, FedEx, and more. You can also use third-party apps for additional shipping options.
Set Shipping Rates
For each shipping zone, set up the shipping rates based on factors like weight, price, or a combination of both. You can offer free shipping or set flat rates.
Configure Package Dimensions
Accurately input the dimensions and weight of the products you sell. This information helps Shopify calculate shipping rates accurately.
Enable Carrier Calculated Shipping (CCS) (if needed)
If you want to offer real-time shipping rates from carriers like USPS, UPS, or FedEx, you'll need to enable Carrier Calculated Shipping. You may need to upgrade your Shopify plan to use this feature.
Customize Shipping Labels
Set up your preferences for printing shipping labels. You can add your branding, logo, and packing slips.
When you receive an order, go to the "Orders" section in your admin. Click on the order you want to fulfill and select the products to ship.
Generate Shipping Labels
Once you've selected the products to ship, generate a shipping label. This can typically be done within the order details.
Print Labels and Ship Packages
Print the shipping label and affix it to the package. Ensure that you use the correct packaging materials to protect the items during transit.
Update Order Status
After you've shipped the order, update the order status to "Fulfilled" in your Shopify admin. This notifies the customer and provides them with tracking information.
Send the customer a shipping confirmation email with tracking details. This can be automated through Shopify.
Handle Returns (if necessary):
If a customer wants to return a product, manage the return process through your Shopify admin.
Does shopify ship for you?
Shopify provides a platform for businesses of all sizes to set up and manage their online stores. Therefore, Shopify's shipping services are primarily designed for merchants who operate e-commerce stores on the Shopify platform. This includes:
Many small businesses, including individual entrepreneurs and startups, use Shopify to create and run their online stores. Shopify offers a user-friendly platform that doesn't require extensive technical knowledge, making it accessible to a wide range of small business owners.
Medium-sized businesses that sell products online also frequently use Shopify. The platform offers scalability, allowing these businesses to grow their online presence.
Even larger enterprises may use Shopify, particularly if they're looking for a straightforward and customizable e-commerce solution. Shopify Plus, a premium version of Shopify, is tailored for larger enterprises with higher transaction volumes and complex needs.
Shopify also caters to brick-and-mortar retailers looking to expand their business by establishing an online presence. The platform provides tools to synchronize online and in-store inventory, making it easier to manage both aspects of the business.
Dropshipping businesses, which sell products without holding inventory, often use Shopify. The platform supports dropshipping models and offers integrations with many dropshipping apps.
Artists and Creatives
Shopify is used by artists, craftsmen, designers, and other creative professionals to sell their handmade or unique products.
Niche and Specialty Stores
Shopify accommodates niche and specialty stores, which may focus on specific product categories or cater to particular demographics or interests.
Shopify's services are available internationally, making it suitable for businesses looking to sell products globally.
Who pays for Shipping on Shopify?
On Shopify, the responsibility for paying for shipping typically falls on the customer making the purchase. The merchant sets up the shipping options and rates, and these costs are presented to the customer during the checkout process.
However, it's worth noting that there are situations where the merchant may choose to offer free shipping as a promotional offer, or as part of their pricing strategy. In such cases, the cost of shipping is absorbed by the merchant.
Ultimately, the specific shipping policies and who covers the costs can vary depending on the individual merchant's business model and preferences. It's important for merchants to clearly communicate their shipping policies to customers, including any fees or charges associated with shipping, to avoid any misunderstandings.
Options of Shopify shipping
Shopify offers several options for managing shipping within its platform. These options are designed to cater to various business needs and shipping preferences. Here are some of the Shopify shipping solutions :
Manual Shipping Rates
Merchants can manually set up their own shipping rates based on factors like weight, price, or a combination of both.
Carrier Calculated Shipping (CCS)
Merchants can use Carrier Calculated Shipping to offer real-time shipping rates from carriers like USPS, UPS, FedEx, and others. This requires a plan that includes access to CCS.
Merchants can choose to offer free shipping to their customers. This can be applied universally or for specific products, collections, or order amounts.
Flat Rate Shipping
Merchants can set a fixed shipping rate for all orders, or specific rates for different regions or zones.
Merchants can set shipping rates based on the total order price. For example, orders under $50 may have one rate, while orders over $50 have a different rate.
Shipping rates can be determined based on the total weight of the items in the customer's cart.
Real-Time Carrier Shipping (RTCS)
This feature allows merchants to display live shipping rates from various carriers directly at checkout.
Local Delivery and Pickup
Merchants can offer options for local customers to pick up their orders in person or have them delivered locally.
Merchants can set up different shipping profiles based on criteria like weight, location, and type of product.
Useful for businesses with multiple locations or warehouses, this feature allows merchants to set different shipping origins for their products.
Printable Shipping Labels
Merchants can generate and print shipping labels directly from the Shopify admin, including options for branded labels.
Merchants can set up rules for automatic order fulfillment based on specific criteria, streamlining the process.
How Shopify calculates shipping costs?
Shopify calculates shipping costs based on the settings and preferences that merchants configure in their Shopify admin. Here's a breakdown of how it's typically done:
Merchants define shipping zones, which are specific regions or countries where they offer shipping. These zones can be set up for domestic and international destinations.
Within each shipping zone, merchants can create shipping profiles. A shipping profile allows the merchant to set specific shipping rates based on criteria like weight, price, or a combination of both.
Merchants can set rates based on the total weight of the items in the customer's cart. For example, they might charge a certain amount per pound or kilogram.
Merchants can also set rates based on the total price of the items in the customer's cart. For instance, they might offer free shipping for orders over a certain dollar amount.
Flat Rate Shipping
Merchants can set a fixed shipping rate for all orders or specific rates for different regions or zones.
Shopify Shipping is a comprehensive shipping solution that can help Shopify merchants of all sizes ship their products quickly, affordably, and reliably. It offers discounted shipping rates, convenient features, and a variety of shipping options to choose from.
By using Shopify Shipping, merchants can save time and money on shipping, and they can provide their customers with the best possible shipping experience. This can lead to increased customer satisfaction and repeat business.
If you're a Shopify merchant, consider using Shopify Shipping to ship your products. It's a great way to improve your shipping process and grow your business.
Frequently asked questions
Here are the most frequently asked questions related to Shopping shipping:
What is Shopify EP package?
Shopify EP packages are packages that are shipped through Shopify Shipping and have a tracking number that starts with "EP". These packages are typically shipped through USPS, but they can also be shipped through other carriers, such as UPS or DHL.
Shopify EP packages are typically used to ship small items, such as jewelry, clothing, or books. They are also commonly used to ship international orders.
If you have received a Shopify EP package, you can track it using the tracking number on the shipping label. You can also track your package on the Shopify Shipping website.