BigCommerce is a leading platform that makes it easy for ecommerce businesses to build and customize an online store with robust development options allowed. With its user-friendly functionality and fully customizable features, you can design product pages, upload products, customize checkout, and set up different shipping methods.
Creating an aesthetically pleasing and functional online store is the first step towards launching a successful ecommerce business. Once you build a BigCommerce store, you’ll need to develop a shipping strategy. From 2-day shipping to free shipping, offering competitive shipping options can help increase average order value (AOV), reduce cart abandonment, and improve customer loyalty.
In this guide, you’ll learn how to easily set up different shipping options for your BigCommerce store, and how to optimize shipping to provide more value for your customers.
Why fulfillment and shipping is important for ecommerce
To meet customer expectations, it’s important for direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands to have an order fulfillment and shipping strategy in place. Without thinking through how you’ll efficiently fulfill and ship orders, it will be challenging to offer shipping methods with competitive rates that don’t cut into profit margins.
Before developing a shipping strategy, you’ll have to decide on whether to fulfill and ship orders in-house or outsource fulfillment, as well as where you’ll store and manage your inventory. Where you store your ecommerce inventory geographically will impact shipping costs as well as the shipping methods you can offer based on where your customers are located.
Offering different shipping options allows customers to choose the best option for them. For instance, some customers might be willing to wait for their orders if that means paying less in shipping costs. Sometimes, a customer will need to expedite shipping if they need their order right away and will pay premium for it.
Your BigCommerce shipping options
Before setting up different shipping methods on your BigCommerce store, you’ll have to think through how you’ll fulfill and ship orders. Depending on the size of your business and your needs, there are a few different shipping options to choose from.
When ecommerce businesses first start out, they oftentimes will ship orders themselves. That means, spending valuable time packing boxes and waiting in line at the post office. While shipping orders yourself gives you full control over the process, it can be a challenge to keep up with shipping orders efficiently as you grow your business. When you ship orders yourself, you also have to think through how you’ll manage your inventory to avoid stockouts.
2. Shipping integrations and apps
BigCommerce offers merchants the ability to set up basic shipping options for their store. But if you’re looking for a more robust solution, the BigCommerce Apps Marketplace offers a wide range of integrations and apps specifically for fulfillment and shipping, including solutions for label printing (shipping labels and return labels), dropshipping, inventory management, order management, and tracking, and fulfillment.
3. Outsource shipping to a fulfillment partner
Once an ecommerce business starts to see a large volume of monthly orders, outsourcing fulfillment to a reliable and scalable third-party logistics (3PL) is a common best practice. Fulfillment is a time-consuming tasks and can take away from more important initiatives, such as business development, ecommerce customer service, and marketing.
A tech-enabled 3PL not only takes fulfillment and shipping orders off your plate but can also provide the fulfillment infrastructure and technology needed to offer competitive shipping, including multiple fulfillment center locations, built-in inventory management software, data and analytics, and more.
How to set up shipping on BigCommerce
To set up shipping on BigCommerce, navigate to the Shipping Manager page and follow these steps:
- Go to ‘Store Setup’ and select ‘Shipping.’
- Input your shipping origin address (i.e., where you’re shipping from).
- Input the shipping zones (i.e., the regions where your BigCommerce store ships to. This can be single or multiple countries, or different states/provinces if you offer international shipping).
- Choose your shipping methods, which are the different shipping options that appear in a customer’s cart.
Top BigCommerce shipping apps and integrations
As a leading ecommerce platform, BigCommerce offers several shipping apps and integrations that make it easy to optimize and automate shipping. Here are some examples of the leading ecommerce shipping solutions that offer direct integrations with BigCommerce.
With the ShipStation app, you can easily import, manage, and ship customer orders all from one platform. By integrating your BigCommerce store with ShipStation, you get valuable insights into the entire order process. You can sync as many orders as you like and save time by automatically applying actions to orders based on certain criteria.
ShipBob is a full-stack fulfillment solution that offers a direct integration with BigCommerce. By syncing your BigCommerce store with ShipBob, you can easily outsource fulfillment by automatically sending orders placed on your store to one or more of ShipBob’s fulfillment center locations.
From there, ShipBob picks, packs, and ships orders for you. ShipBob partners with shipping carriers, including FedEx, DHL, UPS, and USPS to negotiate rates and has algorithms to optimize shipping routes.
“ShipBob’s integration with BigCommerce was easy to set up, and their technology fits nicely into my existing tech stack.”
Lee Nania, Founder of SubSubmarine
ShipBob also offers print shipping labels, packing slips, and native shipping software that integrates with your BigCommerce store to fit all of your shipping needs.
Why using a BigCommerce 3PL company for shipping is worth it
BigCommerce is a user-friendly and robust ecommerce platform designed for ecommerce businesses. Although BigCommerce offers the ability to set up different shipping options and other features to optimize your store’s shopping cart, fulfilling orders is still a time-consuming tasks that can impact how quickly you get orders packed and out the door.
By partnering with a 3PL, you can offer better, more affordable shipping options for your customers while delegating fulfillment and shipping to the experts. Here are some of the benefits of a 3PL like ShipBob who can help with BigCommerce shipping.
The right 3PL will offer the fulfillment infrastructure and technology to optimize shipping. For instance, tech-enabled 3PL like ShipBob offers multiple fulfillment locations across the United States and internationally to store inventory in. That way, you can expand your customer base by offering faster, more affordable shipping and save on shipping costs.
A better customer experience
A scalable 3PL will offer the fulfillment infrastructure needed to quickly fulfill and ship orders that come in through your BigCommerce store. By integrating a 3PL solution with BigCommerce, an order can be instantly processed and automatically sent to your 3PL’s fulfillment center so it can be fulfilled and shipped out quickly.
Since customers expect updates on their orders throughout the shipping process, ShipBob’s ecommerce logistics solution makes it easy to send order tracking information to your customers and keep them up to date. You also get visibility into the entire process by viewing order status in real-time as it moves from processing to shipping.
Hassle-free inventory management
ShipBob’s technology offers built-in inventory management tools that make it easy to track inventory from one dashboard. You can view your inventory levels in real-time at each fulfillment center, set reorder quantities and notifications, and more.
ShipBob: The #1 BigCommerce 3PL company fulfillment solution
ShipBob offers a direct integration with BigCommerce. Once an order is placed on your BigCommerce store, orders are automatically sent to a ShipBob to be picked, packed, and shipped.
“ShipBob’s dashboard looks like all the other sophisticated tools I use for ecommerce such as BigCommerce, which we recently switched to. It has a comforting familiarity. ShipBob’s tech is intuitive and functional, and I could figure out how to use it on my own. And BigCommerce integrates with ShipBob, which was a must-have for us.”
Wes Brown, Head of Operations at Black Claw LLC
ShipBob offers a full-stack fulfillment and shipping solution with a robust international fulfillment network combined with proprietary technology. From inventory management to distributed inventory, here is an overview of what ShipBob offers.
ShipBob offers a growing fulfillment network that makes it easy to split inventory across multiple fulfillment locations to be closer to your customers. This allows you to expand your customer base more efficiently and offer better shipping rates by reducing the number of shipping zones a package travels through. This method ultimately helps to reduce shipping costs and transit times.
ShipBob has partnerships with major shipping carriers including FedEx, USPS, DHL, and UPS. We negotiate shipping rates with our carrier partners and pass the savings on to you.
Automated order processing
With ShipBob’s automated order processing, orders placed on your BigCommerce store are automatically sent to one of our fulfillment center locations, where inventory is stored. From there, our fulfillment experts pick, pack, and ship orders and tracking information is automatically generated to share with customers.
Custom packaging options
ShipBob gives you the option to use our standard packaging or your own branded, custom packaging (boxes, mailers, and marketing inserts). Whichever you choose, ShipBob takes care of the packing and shipping process for you. This is an excellent opportunity for businesses to create a memorable unboxing experience for their customers and promote brand awareness.
ShipBob is trusted by leading BigCommerce stores
ShipBob partners with fast-growing BigCommerce stores to offer a wide range of fulfillment and shipping solutions. With ShipBob, you can save time on fulfillment, reduce shipping costs and last-mile delivery times, and ultimately improve your company’s bottom line.
For example, Doris Sleep is a luxury sleep brand that makes eco-friendly, machine-washable, hypoallergenic pillows. By partnering with ShipBob, they’ve been able to strategically grow their business by spending less time worrying about fulfillment and shipping.
“ShipBob’s integration with my BigCommerce store has been working great. The fact that I don’t have to think about my shipping integration, do anything when someone orders from me, or worry that something might not get to them makes it more hassle-free.
ShipBob also lets me outsource the things I’m not good at, nor want to be good at, and frees up my time for those at which I excel and can make an impact on my business like marketing, building a brand, and creating a great online experience.”
Tracey Wallace, Founder of Doris Sleep
BigCommerce is a great platform to build your ecommerce store. It offers endless solutions, such as headless ecommerce features, designed to allow your brand to expand and grow. But in order to sustainably grow your business, you’ll need a reliable 3PL partner to help support your retail supply chain.
ShipBob is a fast-growing 3PL with fulfillment center locations across the globe powered by proprietary technology, so you can manage all your inventory and orders all from one, single dashboard.
To learn more about how ShipBob integrates with BigCommerce, click the button below to speak with a fulfillment expert and get custom pricing.
BigCommerce shipping FAQs
Here are some common questions related to setting up shipping options on your BigCommerce store.
How do I set up shipping on BigCommerce?
To set up shipping options, you can use the BigCommerce Shipping Manager to input your store’s origin address (i.e., where your inventory is shipping from), the zones your business ships to, and the shipping options available. If it’s your first time setting up a BigCommerce store, the built-in shipping setup will walk you through configuring shipping and the different shipping methods you want to offer.
What are the top shipping methods for BigCommerce?
It all depends on what you’re shipping and where your customers are located. BigCommerce allows you to offer different shipping methods that make the most sense for you and your customers. A common shipping method is to set up free shipping either sitewide or by instituting a minimum purchase threshold so your costs are covered.
How can I offer 2-day shipping?
To offer two-day shipping, you can choose between air shipping (expedited) or ground. For affordable 2-day ground shipping, you’ll want to consider storing inventory in a location closest to your customers. If your customers are across the United States for example, you’ll want to split your inventory across multiple fulfillment center locations. That way, you can reduce the number of shipping zones a package must travel through to reach its destination and get more packages to customers faster. To distribute your inventory, you can partner with a 3PL like ShipBob that offers fulfillment center locations across the United States and analytics tools to provide data on the most optimal locations.