Rate shopping is a feature that allows you to request a list of rates available to ship an order or a set of orders. This feature extends SmartParcel and SmartPack capabilities by allowing you to consider shipping costs from FedEx, UPS, USPS, and DHL—without having to go to the carrier website for a quote—to determine the most efficient way to ship your small parcel orders.
This article reviews how to configure the logic required to rate shop, as well as how to apply those rates to an order or set of orders.
Rate shopping must be enabled for your account under Admin > Settings before you can proceed with configuration.
Skip Ahead: Use the following links to skip to the relevant guidelines below.
- Step 1: Configure rate shopping logic
- Step 2: Assign rates to orders
Step 1: Configure rate shopping logic
Before you can start rate shopping, an administrative user needs to enable the preferred carriers and configure the preferred logic to use for your orders.
- Navigate to Customers > SmartParcel Settings, then select the customer for which you'd like to set up rate shopping.
Under 'SmartParcel Rate Shopping', select each carrier you would like to enable for rate shopping.
If you want to rate shop for DHL eCommerce services, you must reach out to your DHL representative to enable API access for 3PL Central.
- If you want to apply rates to multiple orders at a time, continue to the next step. If you are rate shopping for only one order at a time, continue to Step 7.
- Under 'SmartParcel Auto Rate Shopping', enter a 'Mapping' value for each set of rate shopping Logic you want to use. The Mapping value must be present in the 'Service' field of your order(s).
Please note that "Free Shipping" and “Prime" are example values in the screenshot above. The Mapping value can be any value as long as it is present in the 'Service' field of an order, but please be aware that this value cannot be an existing service level for any carrier.
From the drop-down menu, choose the 'Logic' that you wish to assign to each Mapping value. There are currently five rules of logic for rate shopping to choose from:Rate Shopping LogicMapping
Overnight – Cheapest the cheapest overnight rate 2nd Day – Cheapest the cheapest overnight or 2nd day rate 3rd Day – Cheapest the cheapest overnight, 2nd day, or 3rd day rate Cheapest
the cheapest rate available with a known delivery date
Cheapest – Independent of Delivery Date the cheapest rate, regardless of a delivery date
- To add additional Mapping values, click Add. Repeat Steps 4–6 until all Mappings are set up.
- To remove a Mapping value, select it from the grid, then click Remove.
- Once you're finished adding mappings, click Save.
Repeat Steps 2–8 for each customer as needed.
Step 2: Assign rates to orders
Assign rates to individual orders
When shipping orders one at a time or via SmartPack, you are likely to rate shop for one order at a time.
- Navigate to Orders > Find Orders.
- Select an order from the grid, then click SmartParcel > SmartParcel.
- Click Get Rates. A list of rates populate in the drop-down menu based on the rate shopping carriers enabled for your account.
Please note that if there is no date listed, the carrier did not provide a delivery date for that particular service.
- Select your preferred shipping rate from the drop-down menu, then click Save Rate. The 'Service' field populates with the selected rate.
- Repeat Steps 2–4 to assign shipping rates to additional orders.
SmartPack users can also use rate shopping to retrieve rates during the packing process of an order. To do so, open an order in SmartPack and repeat Steps 3–5 above. For more information on SmartPack, please see Packing Orders with SmartPack.
Smart User Tip: To have the shipping label automatically print once you select a rate, check the box next to Direct Thermal Printing. Please note that a thermal printer must be properly configured—contact Support if you need help setting this up. Otherwise, Click SP Ship to go to the SmartParcel screen and print your shipping label there.
Assign rates to multiple orders at once
Before you can apply rate shopping to multiple orders, you must first apply the logic in the Service field of your orders. You can do this by manually editing each individual order, uploading an order import template, or utilizing an integration.
Once the logic is applied to the orders, you can apply rates from the Find Orders page.
- Navigate to Orders > Find Orders.
- If needed, use the search filters in the left pane to refine the results displayed in the grid.
- Use < Ctrl > or < Shift > on your keyboard to select multiple orders from the grid, hover over SmartParcel, then click Auto Rate Shop.
A confirmation message appears to inform you that your orders have had rates applied to them and which orders, if any, could not retrieve rates. Depending on the Mapping you have listed in your orders and the Logic you have configured in the system, the ShipService, Earliest, and Carrier columns of the Find Orders grid populate with the cheapest shipping rate and estimated delivery date.