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WooCommerce Shipping Methods: Decoding the Godzilla

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woocommerce-shipping-methods-blogYou are starting out with an eCommerce store and after elaborate research have chosen WooCommerce as your preferred choice an eCommerce system. First herculean task completed. *Phew*

The next step would be deciding on the most appropriate WooCommerce Shipping method to fit your requirement. To factor in the answer to this Godzilla you have two options. First dive into the next round of research. Or simpler just answer the questions below and be closer to the WooCommerce Shipping method you will be using on your website.

Figure Out What’s Best For You

1. Is Simplicity the Key for You?

If you want to have a standard shipping rate across products then you are done with this post right here as this WooCommerce shipping method is included in the basic WooCommerce plugin.

All you have to do is this.

Go to the Dashboard ? WooCommerce ? Settings ? Flat Rate

Here you will have to enable the shipping method, define the shipping cost that you would like to append to an order, and Voila! You are done. The flat rate WooCommerce shipping method has now been applied to your WooCommerce store.

woocommerce-shipping-methods-flatrate

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2. Are You an International Star?

Ok, not quite literally. That’s not what I meant. What I actually meant to ask was if your WooCommerce store will be catering to domestic audience or international audience. The answer to this question can immensely impact the WooCommerce Shipping method you choose

Here again you have three options.

Flat Rate WooCommerce Shipping Method 

Let’s take the simpler one, i.e. the flat rate shipping method first. Yes, I am aware that I covered the flat rate shipping in my previous point. But here I will be taking the WooCommerce shipping method a notch higher.

You can now choose a different flat rate for international customers and a different one for domestic customers. This again is offered in the WooCommerce plugin. Find the directions to the settings on the below map 😉

Go to the Dashboard ? WooCommerce ? Settings ? International Delivery

Go to the Dashboard ? WooCommerce ? Settings ? Local Delivery

 woocommerce-shipping-methods-international 

Table Rate WooCommerce Shipping Method

The second route would be for those looking for something more specific. If any requirements like the following one are on your mind then this option is for you.

I need shipping cost to be based on the country or city or postal code or state the order will delivered.

The aforementioned level of detail in your shipping module can be achieved using a plugin such as Table Rate Shipping for WooCommerce or WooCommerce Advanced Shipping plugin. The array of features along with the cost makes Table Rate Shipping for WooCommerce my personal favourite. 

(Mind you, the table rate shipping by WooCommerce that I am talking about is not the one by WooThemes but that by Bolder Elements which has been priced at a reasonable price of $21 as opposed to the $199 by WooThemes)

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3. Do You Have a Particular Player in Mind?

If you have a particular courier service in mind, say for instance USPS, then you might want to immediately enter the following in your Google search bar – Your Courier service of choice + WooCommerce.

woocommerce-shipping-methods-google

This will help you find out if the API of your chosen courier service has been integrated with WooCommerce. If it has been integrated, you can start using the plugin, which will pull the shipping rates of the provider to your eCommerce store.

Otherwise, you change your courier service provider or start out with creating a custom plugin to fit your needs.

4. More the Merrier? 

If the quantity of products in your cart will be a deciding factor for the shipping charges that will be applied for a particular order then we’re talking about certain rules, predefined conditions which will be set by you, the WooCommerce store owner.

Yet again by recommendation to fulfill this requirement is Table Rate Shipping for WooCommerce by Bolder Elements.

5. “Weighing” your Options?

Many postal services define their costs based on the weight of the packages. If this is the only parameter that is important to you then the recently launched plugin, Weight Based Shipping for WooCommerce is a perfect match for your requirement.

6. One to Many Mapping on the Cards?

woocommerce-shipping-methods-one-to-many*Phew*

At this point I am getting overwhelmed by the plethora of WooCommerce shipping methods, and the case might be the same for you.

But hang in there, let’s finish what we have started! And let’s finish it well.

This is a WooCommerce shipping method which has more to do with user experience than with anything else. It allows customers to ship various items in a single order to different addresses. Benefit: Customer does not have to go through the process of placing orders equivalent to the number of addresses. The order is placed with easy to use options provided by the Shipping Multiple Addresses Plugin by WooThemes. 

Additionally, this will motivate users to make more purchases (especially during festive seasons when gifting is at its peak) leading to an increase in sales.

7. Do You Want to Spy on Your Shipment?

stockvault-security-video-camera132806Hold your horses! I am not implying anything illegal 😉

All I am saying is that if you want to track your shipment you can do it now with the Shipping Details Plugin for WooCommerce. Integrated with 100+ courier services tracking a shipment has never been so simple. 

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8. Are You a Freeloader?

And finally we have reached the end.

When I say freeloader I don’t mean to make it sound derogatory to you. I’ve used it due to lack of any other title 😛

So, if you want to apply the Free Shipping method to the WooCommerce cart then you can do it from the WooCommerce settings page in the dashboard. The image below should help you better.

But if you need to restrict the free shipping option to certain countries based on the minimum order amount then  WooCommerce Free Shipping plugin should do the trick.

Hiccup

Here’s a issue that we had faced with a client and which I feel should be discussed in the WooCommerce Shipping Methods context.

WooCommerce does not allow users to add any two products with disparate shipping methods assigned to them in the same cart. So, if one product that needs to be added to the cart has been assigned flat rate shipping method and another product that has been assigned table rate shipping method then both these products cannot be added to a cart at the same time.

If you have reached a grinding halt in terms of WooCommerce shipping due to this reason then the product based shipping option for WooCommerce is something of interest to you.

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With that solution for your Hiccup I am closing in on the WooCommerce Shipping methods. My research and usage has led me to this post. But there, is obviously a possibility I have missed out something. If I have then the comments section is all yours.

Until then, Adios 🙂

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Tahseen Kazi

Tahseen Kazi

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