WP EasyCart offers many great shipping options – all within a low-cost plugin, but that doesn’t mean the options are not as powerful as some competitors’ plugins. The shipping options for online businesses can be overwhelming, and often challenging to set up regardless of the plugin used and the configuration required. When you consider all the details required to go into a well-rounded shipping system, it can be intimidating!
We have put together this overview is to help you understand some of the many options EasyCart has to offer and to help you decide which will best suit the needs of your business.
Step One: Determine your Shipping System
WP EasyCart offers a variety of systems, all fit different business models, and will likely cover most of your business’ shipping needs. Read on to learn about the various kinds of shipping systems available and popular extensions with eCommerce businesses.
Price and Weight Table Rate
Using triggers to establish shipping prices these are extremely consistent if you set them up correctly and provide a swift return on shipping rates. You essentially enter either the price or weight that you want to trigger and the rate it should show. So, you start with a trigger price or quantity of 0.00 and then determine a rate, say $3.00. Then at possibly $25, you want to trigger a rate of $5, and then at $100, you want to trigger $10.00 so on. The same is true for weight. If a user has a total weight order of 3 pounds in their cart, then it can trigger a set amount. Remember that weight in EasyCart is just a numeric value… it can represent pounds or ounces, you decide the measurement of calculation in different places where applicable, like a live shipping gateway.
Percentage Table Rate
This method is the same as price and quantity, except for you simply establish a set percentage when a trigger price range is achieved. As an example, from $0.00 to $99 you would like to charge 10% shipping, and then from $100 – $500 in cart total, you would like to charge 7.5%. This method permits you to establish tiered pricing using a percentage of the customer’s order.
Quantity Table Rate
Like the other table rates, the quantity table rate shipping option simply adds the total in the cart. This can be applicable if you need to track the number of items there are and charge appropriately. Set a quantity trigger, and then the price you’d like to charge. The quantity table system only looks at products, so if you have option sets that change quantity so you will need to consider what is the best set up in your situation.
Static Method Rates
These are by far the most dependable shipping methods available. Set a name for the static shipping and a rate – and you’re done! So, if you continuously ship ‘Standard Ground’ and charge $7.00 for it, use this method. Customers will always see the right list of options. You can create numerous shipping methods using this option, these include ‘Ground’, ‘Next Day Air’, ‘Express’, ‘In-Store Pickup’ etc. It gives you command over labeling, pricing, and options available to buyers.
UPS, FedEx, USPS, DHL, Australian Post, and Canadian Post have all been successfully integrated with EasyCart. Live shipping can be interesting, and many businesses believe they want live rates, however, there are a few factors before you choose to go this route. For example, some locations cannot be serviced with second-day shipping and a UPS Ground order will never make it to Hawaii. Be sure you have various options for shipping to keep your stock flowing and your customers happy.
With the Stamps.com extension for WP EasyCart Premium Edition, you can quickly pay for postage through USPS as well as print packaging labels for all your EasyCart orders. Buy and print directly from your WordPress admin postage and print labels for orders all from the comfort of WordPress.
Another popular option is the ShipStation extension available with Wp EasyCart Premium which allows you to automatically synchronize your orders with your ShipStation account for seamless shipping management. Purchase labels automate tracking emails, and bulk print your packaging labels all from the amazing ShipStation console.
Additionally, The WP EasyCart OptimalShip extension allows you to receive a custom single DHL shipping rate for international orders. Sometimes a special shipping system is needed for special products, and the OptimalShip extension allows for these custom DHL rates to work in your EasyCart shopping system.
Step Two: Test Your System
As a small business owner, you are likely taking on the responsibility of managing your website yourself. It is especially important that you test the checkout process to ensure there are no errors or mistakes that might cost you in the long run.
By taking the time to check out as a customer you can identify possible gaps in triggers, which can mean you are eating the shipping cost and you can call out any web-related problems like improperly linked buttons and slow loading forms.
Step Three: Update Your Shipping Zones
With EasyCart, we have the option to set up your shipping zones, but this should be done with extreme care. If there is a certain geographical area you would not like to ship to, you can so do by removing the country from the pull-down of countries within the store admin -> settings -> manage countries. We recommend that you do not use shipping zones to limit who can buy from your store. If you have further questions about shipping zones, you can learn more here!
Step Four: Handling Fees and Expedite Order Options
EasyCart has set out to make shipping as flexible and intuitive as possible, without being overly complicated. Two common options are to add a handling fee. For example, if you have a trigger rate system or live shipping system but want to add a simple $5.00 handling charge to it, you can do so.
Another option is to add handling for only specific products. A prime example for this might be a furniture store… a large chair may incur a larger handling fee, while the rest of the products may be shipped at standard rates.
We also offer an ‘Expedite Shipping’ option. This can represent anything you want, maybe same day processing or a shipping expedited upgrade. With WP EasyCart, you can elect to enter these are options if they suit you, or not have them viewable for customers.
Step Five: Keep it Simple
As a business owner who is building their own website, the wise old web design rule of “keeping it simple” should apply. Try to keep as much as possible streamlined and easy. If it is difficult for you to figure out, your customers may find it too bothersome and simply click away – costing you the sale.
We have found most visitors would like a choice or two for shipping, or to have it simply calculate automatically, making trigger table rates a great option. Additionally, static rates work well for flat rate orders by giving customers simple pricing that is consistent and accurate.The fewer unnecessary details you try to include in your shipping system the fewer errors you will receive. By setting up your shipping simply and easily with WP EasyCart the less over and undercharging you will receive, and the more conversions can be had by doing so.