nopCommerce Tips: Adding Third-Party Shipping Calculation

A big part of online sales is being able to accurately calculate shipping. Tying directly into third-party shipping calculators can help immensely with this. In today’s article, we’ll focus on U.S.-based shipping options for United States Postal Service and United Parcel Service, two of the most popular options for shipping in the United States.

Log into your nopCommerce instance as an administrator; access the Administration section of your nopCommerce instance. Highlight “Configuration”>”Shipping”>”Shipping Methods”.

In this instance, we’re going to remove the default entries, and add “UPS”, and “USPS”. To do so, click “Add New”, and enter the shorter acronym first, then the full name for the shipping method under “description”. Click “Save”, and go back to “Configuration”>”Shipping”>”Shipping Method Restrictions”.

This gets a little bit confusing here: you only want to uncheck the countries and methods you *do* want to be able to use to ship to. A little counter-intuitive, but that’s how this works. Click “Save”, then we’ll take a look at “Shipping Rate Computations”.

We’ll need to take a sidestep here, and set up developer accounts with UPS, and USPS – it’s fairly straightforward, and can be done through their respective websites. In addition, you’ll need to create shipping accounts for your client site with each of these providers, at which time they’ll give you the identification information you’ll need to enter in order to activate the shipping calculation functionality on your own site.

So – once you’ve got all that, come back to “Shipping Rate Calculations”; click “Configure” next to each shipping method, and enter the field values appropriately. You’ll start with the test servers that have been provided; send a test order through, to confirm that you’re getting the expected results. Once you’re ready to allow live transactions, be sure to switch them over to the live servers. Now you’ll have appropriate shipping rates automatically calculated for your site, and not have to worry about being on the hook for shipping costs.

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Author Spotlight

Carole Bennett

Carole Bennett is the founder and principal of IndigoTea. As a professional IT consultant, Carole has provided solutions for companies as diverse as Verizon, Frito-Lay, Capital One Auto Finance, and Zales Jewelers, parlaying a unique talent for acting as a translator between the worlds of business challenges and technology solutions. She considers multi-tasking skills gained from simultaneously 1) managing a fire performance troupe, 2) raising a family, and 3) working as a full-time IT consultant excellent preparation for her current career incarnation as the driving force behind IndigoTea. "Fire-breathing redhead on a mission" is not just a metaphorical description!

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