Overview of Shipping in ProductCart

Last Updated: May 19, 2014 01:49PM EDT
ProductCart includes a sophisticated shipping component. ProductCart can calculate shipping charges in two ways: by connecting to one or more shipping providers (UPS, FedEx, USPS, Canada Post), or by using custom shipping rates that you define. The integration with UPS and FedEx has been officially approved by the two shipping companies.

In the first scenario, ProductCart dynamically collects shipping rates by connecting to one or more of the shipping providers mentioned above, which return rates that are based on:
  • The total weight of the products being purchased.
  • Whether the product is oversized or not.
  • The number of packages that are part of the shipment.
  • The “Ship From” address entered by the store administrator.
  • The customer’s shipping address type (commercial vs. residential).
  • The customer’s shipping address.

In the second scenario (custom shipping rates), shipping rates are calculated based on criteria that you define.
 

Combining shipping rates from different carriers


For added flexibility, the shipping component allows you to combine custom shipping options that you have created with the rates returned dynamically by one or more of the above mentioned shipping providers.

Regardless of how they are calculated, available shipping options are displayed to your customers during check out. It may happen that no shipping options are displayed even if you did configure one or more shipping providers and/or custom shipping options. For more information about why this may be happening, review the section entitled No Shipping Rates Returned.


Shipping preview and other useful features

Another useful feature that your store customers will appreciate is the ability to “preview” shipping rates from the shopping cart page, before registering a new account or logging into an existing account.

Other interesting, shipping-related features include:
  • The ability to handle multiple package shipments and have oversized products be automatically considered a separate package.
  • The ability to handle shipping calculations on extremely light products (e.g. pins, business cards, electrical parts, etc.).
    This new feature was already addressed in the Adding New Products section of this User Guide.
  • The ability to “flag” a product as an oversized item and consider it as a separate package when determining shipping charges for the order.
    When using UPS, the oversized feature also produces different shipping rates in accordance with UPS shipping rate tables.
  • The ability to show shipping instructions or other messages related to choosing a shipping option on the shipping service selection page.
    The message shown can be easily added and edited through the Control Panel, and can be shown at the top or at the bottom of the page.
  • More control on which shipping options are shown to customers during checkout.
    You can now set up a custom shipping option to only be shown to international vs. domestic customers. This feature is available with custom shipping options.
  • Shipping by zone if you use one of the shipping providers that are built into ProductCart.
    Currently: CanadaPost, FedEx, UPS, and USPS.
  • The ability to print shipping label for FedEx, UPS and USPS.
  • You can now show or hide the Preview Shipping Charges link in the storefront.
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