Send Rates to Store Checkout Overview

Explains the Checkout Rates feature: requirements, how it works, and things to know.

ShipStation's Checkout Rates feature lets you control the shipping services and rates your customers can select during their store checkout. You can configure Checkout Rates to use live rates or flat rates (or both!) for your store checkout.

To use Checkout Rates successfully, you'll need to perform the three following tasks:

Once these tasks are completed, you can then start sending the rates you configured to your store platform. Your customers will then be offered these shipping options during their checkout. When the orders import into ShipStation, you'll see your customer's selection as the Requested Service. While ShipStation does not automatically apply this selected service to the shipment by default, you can enable a Checkout Rates setting that will do this if you wish. Visit our Configure Checkout Rates article for all the steps involved in configuring rates for your stores.

Checkout Rates Requires Accelerate Plan or Higher.

To access the Checkout Rates feature, your account must be on the Accelerate plan or higher (also available to accounts during the trial period).

Additionally, this feature is currently in its beta testing phase for Australia-based accounts. This means certain functionality may be limited or you may sometimes encounter unexpected results. If you encounter any issues while using this feature, please contact our support team or your account manager so we can help resolve the issue or improve the feature!

How Rate Estimates Work

You can configure three types of checkout rates: Live Rates, Flat Rate, and Free. Live Rates pulls a rate from your carrier accounts for the services you define in the Checkout Rates settings. For example, you could create a standard option using a live rate for a carrier and service that ships within 3-5 days. Flat Rate and Free allow you to apply the same price to all shipments regardless of shipping cost (in the case of the Free option, that price would automatically be $0).

When using the live rate pricing method, ShipStation takes the package weight (either the weight sent from the store or the weight set for the item in ShipStation), the ship-to and ship-from postal codes in ShipStation, and the package dimensions for the shipment and requests rates for all the carrier services you specified. ShipStation compares those rates and passes back the least expensive result with its transit time to display on the store checkout screen.

Currently, Checkout Rates must make the following assumptions about each shipment to get a rate estimate from the carriers:

  • Shipments are shipped from your default Ship From location.

  • Shipments use package type: Package. There is currently no way to designate or receive rates for other package types.

  • For single item orders, the package dimensions set in the product record are equivalent to the package dimensions used to ship the item.

  • Product weights are the same as the shipping weight. For the most accurate rates, you may need to adjust the product weights to represent the shipping weights.

    If this is not possible with your workflow, an alternate option would be to use the Rate Adjustment option provided in the Checkout Rates setup. This allows you to add a percentage or set amount to any rate returned by the carrier's API to compensate for any rate increase the package weight will incur.

    Please note, item weight is required to get rates for the Live Rates option. If no weights are configured for the item in either ShipStation or your store, your carriers will not send a rate for that shipment.

Requirements for Checkout Rates

Store-specific Requirements:

Notes About Checkout Rates

  • The Checkout Rates feature is currently only available for US, Canada and Australia-based ShipStation accounts.

  • Some selling channels may have store-specific requirements for Checkout Rates to work. Be sure to follow the instructions for your selling channel in the Connect Checkout Rates to Your Store article.

  • The Checkout Rates feature assumes all shipments are shipping from your default Ship From Location and using a package type of Package. There is currently no way to choose other package types or enter package dimensions.

  • ShipStation uses a combination of product weight (as configure in ShipStation or sent from the ecommerce platform) and volume when requesting rates from the carriers.

    • Weight: We recommend ensuring the product weights in your store represent the shipping weights.

    • Volume: ShipStation relies on the dimensions in the Package Dimension fields of the item's Product Details to determine the volume of the shipment. If no dimensions are added to the product, ShipStation will use the Backup Dimensions you set for the Checkout Rates (see the Configure Checkout Rates article for more information about this setting).

  • Troubleshooting tip: If you see a blank page under the Checkout tab after ShipStation enables Checkout Rates on your account, you must add a Ship From Location.