Setting up your shipping rates

When you fulfill your orders through the Shopify Fulfillment Network, the cost of fulfillment and shipping is combined and charged to you in your monthly Shopify invoice. To offset these costs, you need to decide on a shipping pricing strategy that makes sense for your business.

The Shopify Fulfillment Network uses zone-based pricing to determine your shipping costs. For more information about how your charges are calculated, refer to Billing and pricing.

Shopify shipping capabilities

Shopify's shipping settings are centered around shipping profiles. Shipping profiles let you create specific shipping rates for the products that you add to the profile. Any product that isn't added to a custom shipping profile uses the shipping rates that you set in your general shipping profile.

Within each profile, you can create shipping zones. Shipping zones specify which regions receive which shipping rates. For example, you can create a shipping zone for the US which has free shipping, and another zone for Canada which has a $5 flat shipping fee. Shipping zones can be based on countries or states. If you need to specify shipping zones by postal code, then you can use an app from the Shopify App Store.

Within each shipping zone, you can create groups of locations which all share the same shipping rates. This lets you charge different shipping rates depending on which location fulfills the order. For example, you can create a shipping profile for a promotional T-shirt which has free shipping if fulfilled from your Florida warehouse, but charges $5 USD if fulfilled from your New York warehouse.

For more information, refer to Shipping profiles.

Charging free shipping rates

A common shipping strategy is to incorporate the cost of fulfillment and shipping into your product prices and offer a free shipping rate at checkout. This keeps shipping rates simple, and can be used in marketing for your business.

For more information on setting up free shipping rates, refer to Create free shipping rates.

Charging flat shipping rates

Flat rates can be used to set specific shipping rates for certain products, regions, or fulfillment locations. You can also add conditions based on price or weight, so that orders with different values or weights are charged different flat shipping rates.

Flat rates help keep shipping rates simple, but can result in charging your customers too much or too little for shipping, depending on the actual cost.

For more information on setting flat shipping rates, refer to Create flat shipping rates.

If you need help determining your flat shipping rates, then contact the Fulfillment Success team from the Overview tab in your Shopify Fulfillment Network app.

Charging calculated shipping rates

If you want to explore charging calculated rates in your checkout, then contact the Fulfillment Success team from the Overview tab in your Shopify Fulfillment Network app for the best way to set this up for your business.

Shipping profiles and SFN

If a location within a shipping profile includes a country or region, also referred to as zones, with assigned shipping rates, then this location becomes an option for fulfillment. You should only include a country or region in a location if you want that fulfillment center to ship orders to that zone.

Use caution if you use the Rest of the World (ROW) feature to assign zones and shipping rates to your shipping profiles. A zone should contain a list of only the countries and regions that are supported by the location. If you have the same zone listed in multiple locations, then split shipments might occur.

If an order can't be fully fulfilled at one location, then the shipments will be split if the following requirements are met:

  • there are other fulfillment that have the necessary inventory
  • the other fulfillment locations contain the same countries or regions and shipping rates within their zones

Split shipments result in your being charged for shipping multiple times. For example, if an order has 3 line items where 2 can be fulfilled at SFN and 1 item at a non-SFN location, then the order is split. SFN ships 2 items, and your non-SFN location ships the remaining 1 item. You're charged shipping for each respective shipment.

To help avoid split shipments, make sure that all of your fulfillment locations are sufficiently stocked with your inventory.

Draft orders, orders that aren't submitted directly through the online store, don't follow shipping profile logic. These orders default to the Fulfillment Priority Location. Some apps can also cause orders to default to the Fulfillment Priority Location. Contact SFN-Help@shopify.com for more information about approved apps.

You can manually update the fulfillment location of an order if your paid orders delay has not expired.

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