1. Overview of eCommerce Shipping Rate Calculators
Every eCommerce business wants to provide the best shipping rates to its customers. Shipping rates can play a big role in customer conversion rates. Looking at high shipping rates at the time of checkout can lead to cart abandonment. Of course, being able to provide free shipping on all orders is the ideal solution to this problem. But offering free shipping can easily eat into business profits. This is why calculating shipping rates is so important for eCommerce couriers and businesses. The goal of calculating shipping rates is to arrive at a cost that is bearable both for the customer and the eCommerce couriers/businesses.
Now the question is, how do you calculate shipping rates? To answer this, we have enlisted the 10 best shipping rate calculators for couriers and businesses.
But before that, let’s find out what shipping costs are exactly.
2. What are Shipping Rates?
Shipping rate is the cost of moving an order or shipment from the seller’s storage unit or warehouse to the customer’s doorstep. The components of a shipping rate are:
- price of packing boxes, bubble wrap, tape, etc.
- compensation of the courier pick-up agents who pick, pack, load, and deliver orders.
- fuel charges or other handling fees
- payment of drivers involved in moving orders from one place to the other
- duties and taxes for international orders
Factors like delivery speeds or deliveries outside serviceable areas can increase shipping rates for customers.
3. Top 10 Best Shipping Rate Calculators for Ecommerce Couriers [2021 Updated List]
Calculating shipping rates is crucial to providing a good delivery experience to customers. Many eCommerce couriers and businesses do not realize it but shipping rates influence product pricing. If an eCommerce business offers free shipping, it would include shipping charges in the product price itself. Therefore, whether it’s an eCommerce business or an eCommerce courier, shipping rate calculation is absolutely necessary. Here’s the list of the 10 best shipping rate calculators for eCommerce couriers.
3.1) Shiprocket Shipping Rate Calculator
ShipRocket is an eCommerce courier aggregator that provides various order management services to eCommerce businesses. Their services include inventory and warehousing solutions, multiple pickups, and hyperlocal delivery services. ShipRocket hosts a shipping rate calculator on their website that calculates shipping rates for both domestic and international orders. ShipRocket’s shipping rate calculator determines shipping rates on the basis of delivery and pickup pin codes and zip codes. For domestic deliveries, Shiprocket calculates shipping based on actual weight, whereas for international deliveries it measures both volumetric and dimensional weights.
3.2 Gati Shipping Rate Calculator
Gati is a leading eCommerce supply chain management and courier company that helps businesses reach out to a wider market across the world with the help of its extensive warehousing space and delivery operations. It features a shipping rate calculator on its official website that calculates shipping rates for both domestic and international shipments.
Gati’s shipping rate and transit time calculator has a field where eCommerce couriers and businesses can enter an estimated value amount for the purposes of shipping insurance. Other fields include origin and destination addresses including pin codes/zip codes, destination country, the actual weight of the consignment, the volume of shipments, and finally a check box for determining owner or carrier risk.
3.3) FedEx Shipping Rate Calculator
FedEx needs no introduction for eCommerce couriers and businesses. FedEx is one of the world’s leaders in providing shipping-related services to individuals and businesses. It provides racking, temperature-controlled transportation and manages the world’s largest delivery fleet.
FedEx also has a shipping rate calculator on their website that eCommerce couriers can use to calculate domestic and international shipping rates based on actual and dimensional weight. FedEx shipping rates can be affected by the kind of delivery service an eCommerce courier opts for, like urgent/priority shipping, overnight express, same-day delivery, etc. FedEx also offers DDP or Delivery Duty Paid international shipping.
3.4) ParcelMonkey Shipping Rate Calculator
ParcelMonkey is a shipping and delivery management eCommerce courier that integrates with several other third-party logistics and courier providers like Aramex, Purolator, USPS, etc. With ParcelMonkey eCommerce couriers and businesses can get access to exclusive discounted shipping rates.
ParcelMonkey provides shipping to both domestic and international locations and features a shipping rate calculator that’s pretty easy to use. The shipping rate calculator has 2 modes - Full Quote and Quick Quote.
The Full Quote mode asks for the dimensions of the shipment (length, width, and height), actual weight in lbs, contents of the shipment, item value for insurance, and origin and destination locations.
The Quick Quote only requires the origin and destination countries and the weight of the order.
3.5) DHL Shipping Rate Calculator
DHL or Dalsey, Hillblom and Lynn is a German multinational parcel delivery and supply chain management courier that offers eCommerce solutions to businesses worldwide. It has a shipping rate calculator on its website for individuals and businesses. DHL’s shipping rate calculator will ask you to fill in origin and delivery destination addresses with city and pin codes. Once the pin codes are verified, the next step is to describe your shipments. This is where eCommerce couriers can enter item weight, item dimensions, and the number of items. If you are unsure about the dimensions of your items, DHL also offers package box options you can choose from, like, moving box, 121cmx80cm pallet box, etc.
3.6) UPS Shipping Rate Calculator
UPS is one of the most popular logistics and eCommerce shipping couriers in the world. Ecommerce couriers can use the UPS shipping rate calculator to calculate shipping rates of all their domestic as well as international packages and freights. UPS partners with many independent carriers as well. The UPS shipping rate calculator figures out shipping rates on the basis of Ship From and Ship To countries. It also asks for the pick-up date to determine the transit duration and provide an estimated delivery date. For freight shipping, you can choose from air or ocean freight services.
3.7) USPS Shipping Rate Calculator
USPS is the national postal service of the United States of America. It is bound to pick and deliver private and business shipments to all parts of the United States. Additionally, it also offers shipping and delivery services to 190+ countries worldwide. USPS allows transportation of live animals including poultry from one place to another. It has a shipping rate calculator on its website that asks for the destination country, mailing from and to zipcodes, and date of transportation. It also needs eCommerce couriers to fill in any specific type of package they are sending, cremated remains, live animals, poultry, dangerous goods, etc. In the following sections, you can fill in whether the package requires ground transportation and the kind of box it will need for packaging.
3.8) ShipBob Shipping Rate Calculator
ShipBob is an eCommerce fulfillment and shipping courier software that caters to eCommerce couriers and businesses in 220+ countries. ShipBob offers a shipping and fulfillment pricing calculator on their website. Ecommerce couriers need to fill out their first and last names, company profile, eCommerce platform, and the number of monthly shipments they would send to get a quote. ShipBob also has clearly demarcated rates for receiving, storage, and standard packaging.
3.9) EasyShip Shipping Rate Calculator
EasyShip is an eCommerce courier software that provides integrated shipping services to eCommerce businesses all around the world. EasyShip picks up orders from 28 countries of the world including most of Europe, the Americas, and some parts of Asia and Africa. However, it makes deliveries in over 200 countries. The Easyship shipping calculator works on the actual weight model. Ecommerce couriers can fill in the source country, the destination country, zipcodes, and weight.
3.10) Shoppre Shipping Rate Calculator
Shoppre is a pickup and delivery eCommerce courier company that ships orders to both domestic and international locations. To get a shipping estimate, Shoppre uses a shipping rate calculator on their website that first categorizes orders to document or non-document categories. Then businesses and couriers can enter the destination country, the actual weight of the package, and the dimensions of the package.
4. How are Ecommerce Shipping Rates Calculated By These Best 10 Shipping Calculators?
Now that you have a fairly good idea as to what a shipping rate calculator does and which fields it includes in calculating shipping rates, it’s time to understand how certain factors can affect ecommerce shipping rates. Get the lowdown below.
4.1) Distance of the Delivery Address
Shipping rates tend to increase as the delivery address grows further away in distance from the source. Shipping rates are calculated based on shipping zones, where Zone 1 is the nearest delivery or serviceable location, usually located within a radius of 0-50kms from the eCommerce courier company’s warehouse or central hub. As the order delivery location moves further away, the shipping rates increase. This is partly why international shipping is so costly. However, international shipping does come with its own set of shipping regulations that make it such a high-value service.
4.2) Weight of the Package
Calculating shipping rates via the weight of the package is pretty straightforward. All you need to do is find a good shipping rate calculator, weigh your order, fill in the shipping address and check the shipping rates. That’s it. But, keep in mind that the weight of the order consists of the item and the packaging that goes along with it. If your item weighs 0.5kgs and you use solid packagings like bubble wrap and cardboard to wrap it, the weight and therefore, the entire shipping rate of your order would go up. Calculating shipping rates by weight is a good method but weight discrepancies are common. Be mindful of that and you’re good to go.
4.3) Size of the Package
Another way a shipping rate calculator determines shipping rates is by dimensional measurements of a package. Dimensional measurements include the length, breadth, and height of an order. Most large ecommerce couriers like FedEx, UPS, USPS, BlueDart, etc, take into account both the dimensional measurements and the actual weight of the order to determine shipping rates. Using dimensional measurements can lead to cheaper shipping rates if you are transporting a small but heavy package.
4.4) Mode of Delivery
The kind of delivery method a customer chooses directly affects the shipping rates. For instance, FedEx, UPS, USPS, and most couriers offer overnight express shipping, next-day shipping, same-day delivery, and various other expedited forms of shipping services. Naturally, these expedited shipping services will cost more than standard shipping services because of the sheer automation and effort it requires on part of the eCommerce couriers. On the other hand, if an eCommerce courier or business offers hyperlocal delivery, it can do so at cheaper shipping rates because of the logistic costs it saves by sourcing products directly from the local marketplace.
4.5) Customs Duties and Taxes
Most eCommerce couriers that handle international or cross-border orders, manage customs clearance, brokerage, and other duties on behalf of the eCommerce businesses. Such types of orders are marked Delivery Duty Paid or DDP. Those duties and taxes are included in their shipping rates. This is one of the reasons why international shipping can become exceptionally expensive. The other type of orders, Delivery Duty Unpaid or DDU, are the ones where all customs duties, taxes, and handling charges are to be paid by the importer at the time of clearance.
4.6) Shipping Insurance
Another factor that can influence shipping rate calculation is having shipping insurance. The cost of insurance is 2%-3% of the total order value. Some eCommerce couriers also allow an increase in the shipping insurance value with extremely high-value products. Even though insurance may seem like an added cost, it’s advantageous in the long run, in the case of any shipping accident. If you are an eCommerce business trading high-value items, losing even a single item can cost you a fortune. Shipping insurance is a failsafe in case something goes wrong in transit.
4.7) Handling Fees
This is another factor that a shipping rate calculator takes into account while calculating shipping rates. Handling fees are usually charged in the case of shipping large and heavy items like air conditioners, furniture, refrigerators, or machinery parts. Basically, anything that is so bulky that it requires the assistance of two or more people for loading and unloading. Handling fees may also be charged when orders require specific crates for transportation or during the delivery of dangerous or flammable goods like lithium batteries, etc.
5 Final conclusion
Are you convinced now how important shipping rate calculation is for maintaining the profit margins of e-commerce couriers and businesses? Free shipping is an enviably good option to offer but it’s not always the most viable option. This is why an eCommerce courier must use a shipping rate calculator to find out the cheapest shipping rates for order fulfillment. Cheap shipping rates do not translate to a bad shipping experience. It only shows the amount of research an eCommerce courier has invested in streamlining its shipping operations. We are certain that with the above list of the best 10 shipping rate calculators, you will always find the best rates on shipping.