Product Defaults

Explains one type of product automation: product defaults. Includes how to set defaults individually and in bulk and explains what each default does.

Product Defaults are the details stored in your ShipStation product records. The product details configured in the product record indicate what the default settings will be for orders that contain only that product. You can also use the product defaults to do things like automatically set an order's shipment configuration or track the product's inventory levels.

Follow the steps in this article to set your Product Defaults using any of these three methods:

  • Individually in Product Details: Edit an individual product's defaults directly in the Product Details screen.

  • By uploading in bulk with a CSV import: Add or edit multiple product records with a single CSV file upload.

    The CSV upload for products can update product weight, dimensions, tags, and customs details but does not include shipping service or package type.

  • When shipping an order: Select the Save as shipping defaults for this product option when you configure shipping for an order.

ShipStation University Automation Course

If learning by doing is more your style, take the ShipStation University Automation course. The lesson videos will show you how to use the three different types of automation in ShipStation: Product Automation, Service Mapping, and Automation Rules.

Configure Individually in Product Details

Configure individual product details on the product's Standalone Product Details screen. Setting individual product details is useful when you only need to configure only a few products.

Access the Standalone Product Details

Access the Standalone Product Details screen in one of two ways:

From the Products Grid

  1. Go to the Products tab.

  2. Locate the product in the list of existing products.

    Quick tip: Use the Search Products... field to search for a product by name or SKU.

  3. Click the linked product SKU or double-click the product's row in the Products grid:

    Products grid. Red box around SKUs in SKU column to show hyperlinks to Product Details

From Order Details

  1. Go to the Orders tab.

  2. Click the linked order number for the order containing the product to open Order Details.

    Quick tip: Use the Search Orders... field to search for an order in the Orders grid.

  3. Click the linked product name.

    Order Details. Red boxes around product names to show hyperlinks to Product Details

Configure Product Details

Configure the product's defaults in the Standalone Product Details screen. Be sure to click Save to save your changes.

The Standalone Product Details screen is divided into individual tabs containing specific details. The General, Shipping, Customs, and Store Alias tabs include settings related to Product Defaults.


Learn More About Product Defaults

To learn more about what product details can be configured in ShipStation, review the Product Details Settings section of the ShipStation Products Overview article.

Product Details Tabs


Available Fields


Product Defaults related to general product identification information.

  • Description

  • Image URL

  • Reporting Category

  • Order Tags

  • UPC

  • Returnable


Product Defaults related to product shipping details, like carrier and service.

  • Preset Group

  • Domestic

  • International

  • Weight

  • Dimensions

  • Warehouse Location

  • Fulfillment SKU


Product Defaults related to international shipping, like declared value and harmonization code.

  • Do not create customs

  • Description

  • Declared Value

  • Harmonization Code

  • Origin Country

Store Aliases

Lists alternate SKU values for the product record.

  • SKU

  • Store

Apply Changes to Open Orders

Any changes you make to the product defaults will only affect new orders as they import, not orders that you imported previously.

Check the option to Apply changes to open orders before saving when you want the changes you made to product details to apply to already imported orders.

Shipping defaults tab with arrow pointing to Apply changes to open orders checkbox.

Checking this option will cause ShipStation to re-apply that specific product's default settings to orders in Awaiting Shipment that include the product.

Upload Product Defaults in Bulk

Upload product defaults in bulk using a specially formatted CSV file when you have many products to which you need to apply defaults.

If you use a CSV import to create your products, you can include the default settings in the initial import. Or, if you already have product records created, you can update the existing product records as well.

Export and Edit Product List

Upload Your CSV

You will receive a message that your import has been sent. Close that window, and you can continue to work in ShipStation while the import completes in the background.

Import Products from CSV popup. Shows a spinning wheel and the Close button.

When your import is complete, a notification message will appear to let you know. You can also see any import errors.


If your import fails, you will receive an import failure message that indicates the potential reason. See the Product Imports Troubleshooting article for steps to troubleshoot any errors you may encounter.

Updating products with a CSV file

  • SKU is a required field.

  • There is no longer an option for match-by-name.

  • Shopify Merchants: Shopify manages product weights in grams, and we use ounces. Be sure to convert those numbers before importing your CSV into ShipStation.

  • Leaving a cell blank in the CSV file will cause ShipStation to enter a null value for that field.

  • Order Tags can be added, but not removed, with a CSV import.

  • CSV Tag field 29-Character Limit: If you add an order tag to a product via CSV, the tag field has a 29-character limit. The tag will not add if it has 30 characters or more.

  • Product Aliases and Product Preset Groups cannot be added or removed via the Import action

When Configuring Shipping for an Order

Once you've configured a shipment in ShipStation, you can tell ShipStation to save the shipping details you're using as Product Defaults for future use. The next time an order for the same product imports, ShipStation will automatically apply the same shipping settings.

Available for Single Product Orders Only

This option is only available for single product orders where the product in the order is linked to a product record in ShipStation.

Click the link to Save as shipping defaults for this product located under the shipping details in the Configure Shipment Widget.

Configure Shipment Widget with arrow pointing to Save as shipping defaults for this product link

After you click the link, the shipping details will be saved to the product record and will be reused for future orders that contain the same product.

Product Defaults with Advanced Product Types

If you're using ShipStation's Advanced Product Types, Parent and Variant SKUs each have their own set of defaults.

When ShipStation applies defaults to an order containing a variant SKU, ShipStation will apply the Parent SKU defaults first and then apply any variant SKU defaults that differ from the parent SKU.