Best WP E-commerce Shipping Alternatives

image 2146

One aspect of an online store that requires careful planning is shipping. Because an inconsistent delivery plan can quickly irritate your customers, you must give special attention to getting it right every time. That’s where a shipping plugin comes in handy.

If you’ve ever ventured into e-commerce, you’re well aware of the numerous considerations that must be made. There’s the process of making a product—or finding one to sell at the very least. There’s inventory management. There’s also marketing and advertising to consider. There are even a variety of payment gateways to think about. However, it would help if you also carefully consider how to handle shipping.

Ironically, shipping is frequently overlooked, given that it’s the aspect that dictates how you will deliver your products to your customers. It’s very crucial!

You can address all of your shipping issues with a plugin, as you can with almost everything WordPress-related. We’ll go over the best options for your WordPress e-commerce business in this post.

If you’d rather not use an off-the-shelf CMS like WordPress because you’d like to customize your store exactly how you want, there is a perfect solution for you. But for this post, let’s take a deep dive into the best shipping alternatives for WordPress users. Please stick to the end of this post, where we share shipping best practices and top strategies to boost your sales.


WordPress Shipping Alternatives

1. WooCommerce

What better place to start than WordPress’s most popular plugin? WooCommerce is the most popular WordPress e-commerce plugin (and is owned by the same company that owns WordPress). It has many features that will convert any WordPress site into a professional online store right away.

Store administration tools, reports, security features, marketing, promotions, coupons, tax options, shipping options, and SEO are included in the free plugin.

There are many extensions available to help expand the capabilities of your store. The extensions have a wide range of features, such as table rate shipping, payment gateway fees, product documentation, returns, warranties, product add-ons, subscriptions, PDF invoices, and products of the day, to name a few. The cost of these extensions ranges from around $29 to $299 per year.

You can already tell that WooCommerce is not a standalone shipping plugin, but we have included it anyway. Shipping is an essential aspect of e-commerce, and it is rolled into the various services WooCommerce offers. In essence, with the WooCommerce plugin, you may not need to use another plugin that’s strictly shipping-focused.

However, because WooCommerce is not ALL about shipping, it might not give you all the nice features you’d like to see. And if you’re looking for something more, keep reading for more shipping alternatives. 

2. Conditional Shipping and Payments

This plugin allows you to control the payment and shipping choices available at checkout using conditional logic. For products and orders on your site, you can create elaborate rules to regulate payment gateways, delivery methods, and shipping countries/states.

You can use this plugin to ensure that products with special handling requirements are delivered using specific shipping methods. For instance, shipping valuable orders via insured trackable shipping methods, limiting shipping methods and payment gateway access to particular customer groups, such as members or wholesale customers, and limiting the payment methods available.

3. ShippingEasy

This plugin simplifies shipping and reduces shipping costs (up to 46 per cent off). It is a cloud-based shipping platform that allows sellers of all sizes to manage orders, automate delivery, track shipments, and alert recipients. If you have negotiated prices with services like UPS/FedEx, you can also connect your existing accounts.

ShippingEasy can simplify and speed up the time it takes to ship out orders by:

  • Automatically updating order shipments 
  • Syncing, processing, managing, and printing shipping labels for orders
  • Processing orders from various marketplaces (e.g. WooCommerce, Amazon, Etsy, eBay)
  • Providing phone, email, and chat support on working days

4. WooCommerce Advanced Shipping Packages

This plugin allows you to divide your shopping basket into different delivery packages. Each box and its contents are displayed separately in the basket and checkout pages, with their shipping charges. Each product will have its own set of shipping options.

Advanced Shipping Packages also include partial free shipping, the ability to ship freight items independently to the same destination (rather than numerous locations), the option to select pickup-only product options, and the flexibility to ship products from several sources.

Some of the plugin’s primary features include:

  • Unlimited shipping packages
  • Conditional logic to determine when a package is produced and which products are added
  • Custom package names
  • Exclude shipping methods from packages so that special rates won’t display for specific packages

5. WooCommerce Advanced Free Shipping

This plugin allows you to create complex rules to determine when free shipping rates should be applied to consumers. You may construct several ‘OR’ condition groups with various ‘AND’ conditions inside each group for each shipping rate. 

This makes it simple to set up a free shipping rate based on subtotal, item quantity, user role, country, zip code, shipping class, product category, weight, volume, and so on. You can also use code snippets to create your unique criteria.

On your WooCommerce store, offering free shipping is a smart way to increase conversions and decrease cart abandonment. Setting up a free delivery option, on the other hand, requires serious consideration because it could eat into your profit margins. 

This plugin will help create complex conditions to determine how and when you will give free shipping to your consumers.

6. WC – APG Weight Shipping

WC – APG Weight Shipping allows you to compute shipping charges based on weight and postcode, state (province), or country address shipping for your WooCommerce store. It also allows you to customize options like packing and handling costs, different rates based on weight, number of items, dimensions, cart total, and shipping classes. 

Also, it allows you to exclude shipping for specific orders based on excess weight or dimensions, product categories or tags, shipping classes, and user roles.

This plugin also allows you to display an expected delivery time, hide payment gateways, a custom icon image, etc. It is also compatible with the WooCommerce Product Bundles plugin and can provide multilingual shipping information when used with the WPML plugin.

7. Flat Rate Shipping Plugin

This WooCommerce flat-rate shipping plugin takes shipping expenses to the next level by allowing you to create and adjust several flat-rate shipping costs. Costs can be calculated depending on various factors, including product, weight, amount, country, category, and much more. Create your shipping rates based on business needs and logic!


  • Create shipping methods that are unique to each country.
  • Create shipping methods based on individual products in the cart.
  • Create shipping methods if your cart contains products from a specific category.
  • Shipping methods based on specific tags
  • Depending on the user, a different shipping method can be used.
  • Make a shipping method dependent on the subtotal
  • Create a shipping method based on the number of items in the cart.


How to Maximise Your Shipping Processes

Offer Free Shipping

One of the most effective techniques to prevent shopping cart abandonment is to provide free shipping to your clients. However, shipping is never free, as you might expect. Someone is always going to have to pay. You have a few options to make free delivery work.

  • Increase goods prices to cover delivery costs (customer pays).
  • You pay the total cost of delivery from your profit margins (you pay).
  • Increase product pricing significantly to offset some of the delivery costs (you and your customer pay).
  • Offer a discount code for free shipping to a select group of clients.

You could also try offering free shipping on orders over a certain amount. This method can help offset shipping costs by increasing the average order size, but you’ll still have to pay for it out of your profit margins.

Charge a Fixed Fee

Offering a flat rate for shipping is a popular option. This option’s ideal practice is to make sure you don’t undercharge or overcharge your consumers significantly.

When you have a reasonably standard product line with similar sizes and weights, flat-rate shipping works well. If you sell a large range of products in various sizes and weights, flat-rate shipping becomes more complicated and ineffective.

Offer Local Delivery

Local delivery is another option to explore. This is a fantastic alternative for businesses that want to provide their local customers with a simple and reliable delivery method. You can customize your delivery region using a radius or a list of zip/postal codes when you set up local delivery. 

Customers who live within your defined delivery area will be able to choose “local delivery” as a shipping type during the checkout process. Offering local delivery for free or at a small price over a particular order size can help you save money on shipping and attract more local consumers.

Charge Carrier Rates in Real-Time

Charging real-time carrier rates for shipping is another practical shipping approach. e-commerce platforms like Shopify work in real-time with carriers like USPS and Canada Post (among others) to produce shipping alternatives and live pricing. This gives your consumers the option of selecting and paying for the specific service they choose.

Consider Your Margins

You should constantly keep an eye on your profit margins if you want to be successful in e-commerce. Because shipping is such a massive expense for e-commerce companies, if you don’t do your homework, you may find yourself losing money on shipping.

Use a chart to map out all expenses incurred in getting products to your customers before you finalise your e-commerce store’s pricing and strategy.

Many online business owners are surprised at how quickly the small fees pile up. Don’t fall into the same trap.

Attach costs to the following:

  • Cost of product
  • Shipping costs
  • Packaging
  • Credit card fee
  • Customs/Duties (if you cover them)
  • Profit margin

Be Open and Honest About Shipping Fees

Can’t afford to provide free shipping? The next best approach is to make e-commerce shipping charges public. One of the big concerns for consumers is learning the shipping cost just after they’ve completed their transaction, pushing them to leave their cart and shop elsewhere.

Rather than surprising consumers with shipping charges, implement a flat-rate shipping system that tells them what they’ll pay upfront.

An alternative is to allow them to enter their zip code before proceeding to the checkout so that e-commerce shipping costs may be computed early in the process.

Provide an Estimated Shipping Date

Along with offering free shipping, Amazon has prioritised the speed of delivery for its customers. Most buyers aren’t ready to wait a week or more for an item unless it’s coming from overseas or a custom-made item.

In a study of 2,815 U.S. consumers, most respondents said that a delivery wait time of 3-5 days was acceptable. One caveat: 90% of respondents said they would be ready to wait longer for an online order to arrive in exchange for free shipping.

Give a Guarantee

There are only a few things that give your consumers more peace of mind than a guaranteed receive-by date. Giving a guarantee is one of them.

Mistakes and setbacks are unavoidable, which is why offering a shipping guarantee will reassure your clients that they will be taken care of if issues arise. Ensure excellent customer service, for example, by directly contacting the consumer and offering some compensation.

Make sure your product is correctly labelled and packaged securely to avoid damage during delivery, in addition to ensuring the arrival time.

If you’re considering working with a third-party vendor, learn about their incident rate and make sure you’re familiar with their insurance plans. Customers are more likely to recall how you handled a shipment error than the error itself.

It’s Time to Ship

Hopefully, the information in this post and the plugins and extensions we mentioned will cover all of your shipping requirements.

Finally, the e-commerce platform you choose for your store will determine your shipping options. Learn how to appropriately configure shipping zones, shipping classes, and shipping prices, and your e-commerce business will sail along, assisting your customers on their e-commerce trip.

If you need a dedicated team to help you build a responsive e-commerce store with all your shipping requirements, you don’t have to look elsewhere. Let’s get you started and grow your e-commerce business.


Related blogs

Want to get in touch and learn more about what we can do? We love to just have a chat digital or in person.