I am in the process of getting our site up and running. I have come across a problem with the way shipping is being calculated. Example: I add a spice blend to my cart, I am having it shipped to another city in my province. There is no way that the shipping should be $10.97 on a $5 item with a weight of 30 grams. Am I missing something?
My name is John and I'm a Guru here at Shopify!
Thanks for reaching out here on our merchant forums with your query.
I've had a look at your situation and cross-checked the rates while consulting with some of our other teams here to review the prices you reported here.
It looks like according to Canada Post's own rate calculator that these prices are being calculated and applied correctly.
In fact, the services are available cheaper via our Shopify Shipping discount than the full rates payable to Canada Post in the normal fashion.
There might be more affordable services out there that you can look into for deliveries closer to home, though it looks like the rates you see have been calculated correctly by Canada Post and discounted by Shopify already. :)
Best of luck with everything here!
We were at a Shopify meetup in Toronto just this week and met a merchant with a similar situation to you, although he will be selling seasonings to make sausages, along with his dad's family recipe of marinade. What he was noticing was that an $8 bottle of marinade (roughly the size of a standard size water bottle - but glass) was $15 to ship even a few cities away.
Unfortunately, shipping in Canada is expensive. There are a few ways to make your shipping prices more palatable to customers, one of which is adding a bit of the shipping cost to your product cost. This will take a bit of work on your part to determine the appropriate amount to build into the cost, since I notice you will be selling hot sauce and vinegar as well.
To use the bottle of marinade from the merchant we spoke to as an example, he could make the bottle of marinade $14, and the shipping on it $9. It’s the exact same total, but it makes the customer much more likely to purchase since they aren’t paying nearly double the product cost for shipping.
Another option is using a negotiated rates provider (it’s like Travelocity for shipping) such as eShipper. They’re a Canadian company and great people – I encourage you to check them out to see what they can do for you.
Something you may want to look into is dimensional-weight based shipping, which is something that would be offered in an app such as the one my husband and I created; Intuitive Shipping. Due to your variety of items (spices and hot sauces etc.), you might run into having inaccurate rates via Shopify Shipping since it only offers weight-based rates. It also does virtually everything for shipping calculation, including having a 4D boxing algorithm so that the appropriate size, weight, and number of boxes is charged for your order. We’re also integrating with eShipper over the weekend, so Intuitive Shipping will pull in your negotiated eShipper rates, should you choose they are a good choice for Shadowblix Farm.
Please reach out to our developer, Joel, at email@example.com if you have any questions.
Best of luck in your ecommerce venture!
All the best,
Thanks.... so another question.... in my shipping section I have the option of adding boxes... will shopify default to the "proper" box depending on what the weight of the customers order is? Example.... 3 packages of spices would use the tiny box whilst a bottle of vinegar would use the medium box.
Shopify's shipping algorithm doesn't "pack" the items since it only offers weight-based shipping. It only selects your default box size for the order, unfortunately.
The 4D boxing algorithm in Intuitive Shipping would be perfect for this – by entering your product dimensions and weight in the “Products” section of the app, and your box sizes within your Shipping Methods, whenever Intuitive Shipping runs the shipping calculation at checkout, it will “pack” the items appropriately to charge the proper amount for shipping. In your example, it would charge the appropriate box size, and furthermore, if you had a situation where a customer is ordering a bottle of vinegar and the 3 spices, our system would know to “pack” the 3 spices and vinegar into a medium sized box (let’s assume that these items can be packed together and fit) and charge appropriately.
I notice you plan on selling shrubs, do they have special shipping? You can also set Intuitive Shipping so that shrubs always ship separately, if needed. We have a user who sells live fish which have very special (and more expensive) shipping, so their live fish are excluded from any other shipping calculation and promotion.
I notice you have been around for 23 years (wow!!!), so I imagine you have a strong local following. In Intuitive Shipping, you can also set free or special local shipping rates set on distance or postal code so that customers living between Sechelt and Hopkins Landing (for example) are more likely to order from you. You can catch customers that might be really wanting to try your products but are living a bit too far to pop in but also too close to warrant paying the same rate as someone who lives 3 hours away. I'm in Niagara, Ontario, and I feel this way about stores in Hamilton (about a 40 minute drive).
I know this is a ton of information lol but we’ve seen it all and really want merchants to ship strategically :)
You've convinced me.... your shipping app is just what is needed. Our old open cart website had a shipping app much the same.... I could have 3 spices ordered which would put them into a padded envelope and then having the dimensions of the envelope and weight calculate the price of shipping.... alot cheaper then to send an envelope that say a "box".
You're weclome, Darren!
What shipping app was it for OpenCart? We actually developed for OC for nearly 7 years lol I wonder if it was one of ours :) Great choice switching to Shopify, btw. We're much happier here!
gumbootguy : I do not know about the dimensions of your item, however, if it is 30 gms and flat enough, you can pack them in oversized envelopes and send them via Canada Post. This should cost quite less. I guess it should qualify for lettermails. Also, if you are looking for box packaging, multiple items being packed into a single box, the Multi Carrier Shipping label app should be the right choice for you. With this, you can define a medium sized box which can accomodate 3 spices and vinegar. In addition, if you define multiple boxes, the app will decide and pack the items based on the dimensional weight of each item. Or if you know the quantity of items that can go inside a box, you can very well mark that and go ahead with shipping.