Since 2014, Shopify has received numerous complaints from store owners about not being able to sort the shipping options at checkout or to change the default method selected. For 8 years, this has repeatedly been logged as a feature request (and a very simple one to implement) yet nothing has every been done and Shopify staff simply stop responding to threads about this as the conversation drags on.
I understand that Shopify policy is not to address user needs but to hope for app developers to eventually address those needs in order to charge users more. It's not a customer-friendly policy but I accept that it is a corporate mandate so I'm willing to accept an app solution if one does in fact exist after 8 years.
My specific problem is that we allow customers to place orders and put them on reserve without shipping so they can place multiple orders over time so that items don't sell out (as well as placing preorders) and then contact us to request a shipment of multiple orders when they're ready. To allow for this, we use a manual shipping option called "add to reserves" with a $0.00 price. Shopify changers $0.00 to FREE though, sorts it to the top, and makes it the default option.
To help keep customers from selecting this option unintentionally, we gave it a more lengthy title, "Add to Reserves (combine with future orders for later shipping - actual shipping will be charged when you contact us to request a shipment so choose this ONLY if you do NOT want to ship now)". Despite how clear that is, all customers see is "FREE" and that it's the default option so they choose it and then complain days or weeks later about why their order has not shipped.
We need a real solution.
We need to either sort the shipping option to put this at the bottom and not the default or to make it only visible to select customers, possibly based on customer tags. Sorting is the better option so that customers don't have to enroll to use add it but I'm wiling to consider anything that will address this need.
Shopify, you've heard this same complaint from stores for 8 years. Do you have a solution? If not, is there an app developer who has done Shopify's job for them?
Well said, and I can certainly understand your frustration. We have had a number of people ask about customizing the order of shipping options displayed at checkout. This is, unfortunately, not currently possible, as the final presentation of shipping methods is maintained by Shopify.
If you are open to using a third-party solution, Intuitive Shipping does give you the option to limit the visibility of your shipping methods using various conditions, including customer tags. So, you could set up a Shipping Scenario where 'Customer Tag > Equals > xyz' and this special 'add to reserves' shipping method will only display for those customers who are eligible to see it. It will display at the top, and it will continue to say 'free' (these parts are beyond our control), but you can have a custom description to clearly explain what it is, and limit who sees it.
Not an ideal situation, I get that, but a reasonable alternative.
If you would like more information about how to set this up, please feel free to book a demo with one of our team members who would be happy to walk you through the process.
Please note: when using any third-party rate calculator, including Intuitive Shipping, Shopify requires you to have their Carrier-calculated Rates feature enabled. If you're on either the 'Basic' or 'Shopify' plan, this feature costs USD $20/ month. If you switch to annual billing, Shopify will include the feature at no extra cost and give you 10% off the plan. If you're on the 'Advanced' plan or higher, the feature is already included.
I just wanted to follow up on something I mentioned in my earlier response as I have some updated info. There actually is a way to change the 'free' label that displays at checkout when the shipping cost is $0.00.
Once this is done, zero-dollar shipping rates will appear as '$0.00' at checkout:
This doesn't fix the sorting order issue, and it would still appear first in a list of shipping methods, but it does give you another option to mitigate some of the concerns you have.
Thanks for that tip. I've just implemented it and will see if it helps. We also offer an actual free shipping option with a purchase of $60.00 or more so that will show up as $0.00 too but I don't see a problem with that.
I'm not sure if this will help to keep customers from selecting it in error but it couldn't hurt.
I'll also consider your app for restricting shipping options. I'd really rather not go that route as changing the order of shipping options and the default would be a far better solution than one that blocks most customers from the add to reserves option unless they know about it and ask for it to be enabled but I'll seriously consider it if Shopify continues to both ignore this need and block app developers from addressing it.