I'll be opening up a shopify store that will act as a middle person or Drop Shipper.
Example: Brand lists with us, consumer purchases, we send order confirmation and shipping into the brand.
I had a question regarding this model and how Shopify can help. Forgive me if these questions have already been answered elsewhere but after an exhaustive search, I wasn't able to find any solutions.
First off, I will have products listed in the marketplace with multiple vendors and was wondering if there was a way to associate differing shipping prices depending on the vendor? For example, the products will be t-shirts, so the weight and size will essentially be the same.
SKU1 and SKU2 are listed from VENDOR A. VENDOR A charges $1 shipping.
SKU3 is listed from VENDOR B. VENDOR B charges $2 shipping.
Any way I can accomplish this?
Thank you very much in advance!
The shipping rate issue is a little tricky since each drop-ship vendor can have different shipping rates. Even if both of your vendors are using the same carrier (e.g. UPS) then the rates may still differ because one vendor may get lower rates or may charge different handling fees Furthermore, things get even more complex when a customer places an order for multiple items, with those items coming from multiple vendors.
While it would be ideal to base shipping rates on the actual cost from the drop-ship vendors, I don't believe it's possible today on Shopify (or any of the other shopping cart platforms).
In our experience, most drop-ship customers handle shipping by simply using Shopify's flat-rate or price-based methods. For instance, a store may charge a simple flat-rate of $5 for shipping, even though its vendors have their own flat-rate shipping costs. You may actually pay more or less for shipping on each order, but the idea is that it averages out.
Another approach would be to factor in the vendor's shipping cost to your cost and markup accordingly. More and more stores are offering free shipping, so this is another common workaround.
By the way, you may want to check out our drop-ship management app for Shopify: http://apps.shopify.com/ecommhub. While we don't yet have a better solution for the shipping rate issue, it's something on our roadmap for the future.
Agree with @ecommhub. It's very easy to overcomplicate this issue by trying to get the precise shipping rates from every single supplier warehouse you are shipping out of. It also depends on whether you are shipping using your account number or the supplier's account number. So with all those variables involved, you are really getting lost in the weeds.
Remember that shipping cost is a big contributor to the cart abandonment rate. So, my suggestion is also to either choose a flat-rate shipping and then average it out, or to calculate the average shipping cost across the shipments and then add that to the product cost and then offer free shipping.
Most of the Ordoro dropshipping customers use that approach.
I'm personally going to be incorporating my shipping costs directly in the items price. You can do this according to each wholesaler's drop ship fee, or even from stock in your possession. It makes it easier, and customers love seeing FREE SHIPPING! Also when they go to check out their item's price is exactly what they saw, when they were attracted to the item in the first place. Shipping cost has always detered customers and they abandon shopping carts, as mentioned above. Even if the item may cost a bit more, there aren't any hidden extras before you make the sale. ;)
@JacQuie-Oh Well said! I think most dropshippers get lost in the details and try to get the shipping rates calculated accurately during checkout. But like you said, FREE SHIPPING has it's own allure and the way you have set it up could be the best way to reduce cart abandonment.
@JacQuie-Oh I think it's a good idea to bundle your shipping costs into your product prices. This is a common approach that we see and it makes sense, especially with more and more stores offering free shipping. Although, the only downside I would watch out for is if you rely heavily on pricing comparison websites. If your competitors do not bundle costs into their prices, then it may appear like they have lower prices. Otherwise, this may not really be a concern.
@Tristan While it's not directly built-in to Shopify, there's some work arounds you can use to achieve the same goal of having different shipping rates for each vendor.
I actually wrote a blog post recently that goes into more detail on these issues, on how to set accurate shipping rates in Shopify when drop shipping from multiple suppliers.