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How To: Create and Set Up Shipping Methods for Self Fulfilled Products

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If you are on the Automated Fulfillment Program, shipping for your print or merch products fulfilled by your vendor is already set up, and your website will automatically charge the correct shipping amount for any and all orders, worldwide. You do not need to do anything from your end.

However, if you are selling items on your website that you are fulfilling and shipping yourself, or using an external, 3rd party vendor, you will need to set up shipping methods that will charge the correct amount for those products as well. Alternative to setting up your shipping methods would be to offer free shipping and add the correct amount to the cost of the product

 

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There are 2 ways to set up shipping methods for your self fulfilled products, and the setup and pricing might vary based on your preference. Shipping by Cart Weight, or Shipping by Cart Subtotal. Please select the correct tab for the way you prefer to set up. Also, instructions on how to set up Free or Discounted shipping can be found in the Free and Discounted Shipping tab.

 

Shipping by Weight

 

This will allow you to set up shipping for self-fulfilled products which you are selling through your site such as originals, limited editions, or merchandise products you are fulfilling yourself (ie, not through Gooten). This method uses a weight-based system to determine the shipping cost for different products. This does take some setting up though, as every self-fulfilled product will need to have a weight value set up for it to be priced correctly. 

 

Note: You will need to know how much shipping will be for your products before you begin, so you will need to contact the shipping company you intend to use to get quotes for shipping packaged products. This will usually be based on the weight of the piece and the dimensions of the packaging. If you have a wide range of sizes of your products, you will need multiple quotes (3-5 to cover both smallest and largest, and some in the middle) to account for each.

 

  1. Open your site, and in the Jump To menu, select Shipping Methods.

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  1. From here click on + Add Shipping Method to create a new method.

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  1. On this page you’ll need to name your method. As this is going to be a method covering shipping within the US, I’ve named this US Shipping. Once you’ve entered the name, click on the Next button.

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  1. Now you’ll be on the page where you’ll set up the shipping costs and specify the country which the method applies to.

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Important: The Force Local Tax When Selected switch should only be turned on if you are setting up a Local Pick-up method for customers to pick up orders. This is usually only needed for artists who have a physical business location where orders can be collected. Enabling this will cause all orders placed with this shipping method enabled to automatically add sales tax for the state in which your business is located to be added at checkout, even if it’s not otherwise applicable to the order. Please refer to this article for more information: https://artstorefrontssupport.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/225933367-How-To-Create-An-In-Store-Pick-Up-Option 

 

Note: The Available On Child Sites switch is a setting for “Parent” sites, functionality which is unavailable for new sites. This option has no effect in most cases and can be left set as On.

 

  1. Scroll down until you reach the Countries section, and click on United States to select it. (Keep in mind that this won’t be saved until you click on Update at the bottom of the page)

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  1. Scroll down a little further, and under Calculate Shipping Based On change this from Cart Subtotal to Cart Weight.

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  1. This section is where we will set up the shipping information that we gathered earlier.

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  1. For this example, I’m going to use three values to represent three different sized originals.
    1. 8x10 artwork on paper, in reinforced flat mailers that are 9x11.5”, which costs $5
    2. 12x18 wrapped canvas in an 18x24x5” shipping box, which costs $25
    3. 18x27 wrapped canvas in an 24x36x5” shipping box, which costs $75

 

I’m going to turn this into three tiers, plus there will be a 0 weight tier to allow free shipping of Gift Cards through the site. As the weight values being used here don’t need to use real weight values, that can be set up to represent different groupings of products with the need to be exact. Also remember to account for any additional costs and build them into the costs you are charging your customers, although larger pieces generate more profit so some of that can be used to offset these. 

  • The first tier will have 0 weight and $0 cost.
  • The second tier will be for the 8x10 pieces, which will have a $6 cost.
  • The third tier will be for the 12x18 canvases, and will cost $30.
  • The fourth and final tier will be for the 18x27 canvases, and will cost $85.

 

Now we need to assign weight values to each, to keep the tiers clearly differentiated. A simple way is to start with a weight of 1 for the first non-zero tier, and multiply that by 10 for each subsequent tier.

  • The first tier has weight set at 0.
  • Second tier has the weight set at 1.
  • Third tier has the weight set at 10.
  • Fourth tier has the weight set at 100.


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Important: These are example Values that do not represent real shipping costs. You will need to use values which represent the costs that You are charging, using the prices of Your products, to ensure you are covering the shipping costs of your self-fulfilled products

 

Now you may have one size for your artwork, which would simplify the table significantly, however we would still always recommend having a 0 weight, $0 cost tier even if you don’t currently offer Gift Cards on your site.

 

Also if your artwork covers a much wider range of sizes, we would suggest grouping products into 3-5 collective groups (plus the $0 cost tier) to simplify your pricing. You shouldn’t be trying to exactly cover the shipping costs here, just group them so the shipping costs covers the average cost for each tier. (For more information about this approach, you may find the Learn: Everything You Need To Know About Shipping article here to be a useful read, especially the last section: https://artstorefrontssupport.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360010862172-Learn-Everything-You-Need-to-Know-About-Shipping-

 

  1. Now you can click on Update to save your shipping method, which is ready to use. However you’re not done yet.

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  1. The next step is to make sure that each self-fulfilled product has been assigned a weight value that will ensure it shows up correctly on the pricing table above. In my example it means that each 8x10 paper original will be given a weight of 1, each 12x18 canvas will have a weight of 10, and each 18x27 canvas will have a weight of 100.

 

You will find the Weight field at the bottom of the Info tab of each Standard Store product, and each product on your site will need to be checked to ensure that they’ll be assigned the correct shipping cost at checkout.

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