The Definitive Guide to E-commerce Shipping | ShippingEasy

The Definitive Guide to E-commerce Shipping

How to set up shipping operations for success

Shipping is fundamental to the success of e-commerce businesses of all sizes, from single-channel stores to multi-store, multi-warehouse, international operations, and everywhere in between. Wherever your online retail business falls in that spectrum, shipping provides you with an important direct, physical connection to customers, making it foundational to creating a great experience.

In this thorough guide, here is what you can expect:

  • Shipping’s importance to your customers’ experiences: learn what today’s eCommerce customers expect, and the business case for optimizing your shipping processes to meet and exceed those expectations
  • The shipping ecosystem: understand how shipping processes and solutions integrate with selling, accounting, and other processes—plus see examples of some common shipping process flows you can use as a baseline to evaluate your own shipping operations
  • The physical environment: consider how your picking, packing, and fulfillment processes and tools need to align with and support your selling and shipping platforms
  • Shipping service providers and technologies: examine the various software and service solutions you need in order to optimize your shipping operations, and get specific guidance on what capabilities to look for in each
  • Bring it all together: discover how shipping integrates with inventory management and customer management to holistically grow your busines

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of online shoppers rate free shipping options as important when checking out online


of US and UK customers abandon online shopping carts because of unexpected shipping charges


of online shoppers rate shipping as the most important option when checking out online

Table of Contents

  • Introduction 1
  • Why Do I Care about Shipping 2
  • Shipping ecosystem & capabilities to consider: 4
  • Single vs multiple stores 6
  • International Shipping 7
  • Delivery speed and service levels 8
  • Shipping pricing options 9
  • Delivery flexibility 10
  • Returns 11
  • Data integration 12
  • Inventory Management 13
  • Carrier selection 14
  • Fulfillment locations 15
  • Pick lists, packing slips & shipping labels 16
  • Picking & packing process 17
  • Customer Marketing 18
  • Analytics and reporting 19
  • Shipping processes: High-level 21
  • Step 1: aggregate and manage orders 22
  • Step 2: process, fulfill, label 23
  • Step 3: shipment of orders 24
  • Shipping process: flowcharts 25
  • Most Basic Process: No Shipping Platform 25
  • Basic Process with Shipping Platform 26
  • Advanced Process: Product Shipping Information Known 27
  • Advanced Process: Product Shipping Information Unknown 28
  • Daily Deal Process 29
  • Subscription Process 30
  • Returns Process 31
  • System & Services 32
  • SaaS vs On-premise Software 33
  • Selling Platforms 35
  • Shipping Platforms 41
  • Peripherals 42
  • Printers 42
  • Scales 45
  • Barcode Scanners 46
  • Supplies 47
  • Shipping Solutions: Evaluation & Selection 48
  • How ShippingEasy Can Help 49