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  • How can shipping be so off?

    I've been testing shipping all day. It's complicated due to a wide variety of products from a large number of dropshippers. The latest is that I've put a bunch of stuff in the cart. It totals $61.23 in 3DCart with my UPS account, but when I log onto UPS and input the information in manually, the total is more like $165. Big difference.

    This makes me wonder whether 3dcart is actually accounting for separate dropshippers when it calculates the "real-time" shipping? I know the real-time is supposed to be a UPS plugin, but surely it would have to account for the different sending locations.

    Does anyone who does dropshipping have insight? Thanks!

  • #2
    Do you have Ships By Itself selected on the product pages? I think that is the only way for the system to account for that sort of multiple shipment order.
    Laura Z
    Brass & Silver Traditions
    www.brassandsilvertraditions.com

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    • #3
      Originally posted by brassandsilver View Post
      Do you have Ships By Itself selected on the product pages? I think that is the only way for the system to account for that sort of multiple shipment order.
      No, I don't, but maybe my understanding of "Ships By Itself" is off. At my old company we marked things as ship alone only when they were

      a) oversized, but
      b) not freight

      with the understanding that freight is LTL and never really "ships alone."

      On 3Dcart, if I mark everything as Ships By Itself, what happens when someone orders 3 items from Distributor A, 5 items from Distributor B, and 1 item from Distributor C? It seems like the cart would calculate nine different shipping prices when in reality most of the items can probably be combined per distributor for a total of three shipments.

      I'm so close to launching my store, but there doesn't seem to be any way to account for and/or predict all the shipping configurations. From what I've read in the forums, I'm not alone in this.

      Comment


      • #4
        You are right in your interpretation of Ships by Itself, but I don't think there is any other way around this. We manufacture our own brand, so I don't have any extensive knowledge of drop shipping. From what I know, though, there is not any way to identify the items as shipping from a specific distributor and calculating that shipping accordingly. You may have to use a "shipping to be calculated later" model, although that seems like a big chore to do.
        Laura Z
        Brass & Silver Traditions
        www.brassandsilvertraditions.com

        Comment


        • #5
          Please also make sure you have your dimensions entered, to cover anything that UPS considers Oversized. OS1 and OS2
          http://www.pack-secure.com

          Packaging and Shipping Supply Specialists

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          • #6
            Thanks, I do have dimensions in for every product, so that's not the problem. I think there needs to be clarification on how 3DCart calculates shipping on products from multiple dropshippers. I know the UPS API should be able to do this, correct?

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            • #7
              Do you have all of the distributor addresses input in the general store settings, and all of the products assigned to the correct distributor? I would assume yes, but doesn't hurt to ask. Also, have you used your own UPS credentials, or just the default settings? I think that can make a difference too, but I am not sure. In the end, you may not be able to do anything about it. We don't use drop shippers, and I still have problems with shipping calculation all the time. For example, if we have an over-sized item and the customer orders one unit, the shipping amount is somewhat accurate. However, if the customer orders two of this same item, the shipping quote returned actually drops. By a huge amount. Support told me this,

              "When multiple items are sent in one shipment, but their combined weight is still less than the max box size specified in shipping settings, the combined weight is sent to the carrier, but the box dimensions are sent as 1 x 1 x 1. The only way around this is 'ship by itself'."

              When we change the settings for that product to Ships by Itself, the shipping price quoted jumps but a HUGE amount, and the customer then gets wildly overcharged (Or, as is more often the case, they never place the order because the shipping cost is so outrageous.) So, I am left taking a massive loss on the shipping for this item. 3dcart insists that this is how the system should work, and will not do anything about it. You may find yourself in the same situation, just for different reasons. Hopefully not, though. Let me know if you figure out what is happening.
              Laura Z
              Brass & Silver Traditions
              www.brassandsilvertraditions.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Laura,

                Do you know if there is a user voice thing for fixing these shipping issues? It seems to be a rather large flaw in the 3dCart system. I'd put all my votes towards it.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I know there is one for adding options per distributor, but not for my issue. The thing is that 3dcart insists everything is working properly, so they aren't interested in pursuing a solution. I have spent months going back and forth with them about this and eventually gave up.
                  Laura Z
                  Brass & Silver Traditions
                  www.brassandsilvertraditions.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I put in a support request asking for clarification on how dropship shipping is calculated. I'll post back here if/when I hear something of value.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      brassandsilver if you add it to uservoice please let us know. I would also throw a vote in. We ended up going to all custom shipping rates to get around the shipping issues. It took a long time to set up but we eventually got really close.

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                      • #12
                        Update from support: Using my example, they checked all the settings and said that indeed, the cart is calculating based on three dropshippers, and that the calculation is correct.

                        At this point I suppose I'd better just launch with the expectation that the shipping will take trial, error, and a lot of tweaking (and losing money till I get it right).

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          That's a bummer, verde. I was hoping it was one of those situations where one setting or another was off. You might begin by bumping up the shipping weight you have listed for each item a little bit. Then as you see how it goes you can adjust the weight up or down as needed. You do also have the option of marking up the shipping by a set dollar amount or a percentage. Good luck!
                          Laura Z
                          Brass & Silver Traditions
                          www.brassandsilvertraditions.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Still having lots of issues with shipping calculations. IF anyone here ships big boxes (over 30", and in our case, sometimes 72" or more) it's going to be a money loser pretty much every time an online order is placed -- especially "smaller" orders.

                            Here's a scenario that is with made-up numbers, but is very realistic and pretty much right-on-the-nose with how many of our smaller online orders go:

                            Box 1 is 72" tall x 10" wide x 8" deep. 15 lbs.
                            Box 2 is 17" x 17" x 5". 25 lbs.
                            Box 3 is 20" x 10" x 8". 12 lbs.

                            Shopping cart calculates the total UPS Ground shipping for Customer X at $22.15. THE PROBLEM IS THAT UPS WILL CHARGE US $8.50 ALONE AS ADDITIONAL HANDLING RIGHT OFF THE BAT FOR BOX 1!

                            So, that leaves like $13 & change to cover the shipping cost on the entire shipment (Box 1 still has an added cost for the weight, the $8.50 is JUST a surcharge for the big box and doesn't factor in the weight and distance it has to travel). Actual UPS Ground cost...$42.73. We lose $20.58 on shipping!

                            There's almost no realistic amount of money I wouldn't pay to have a better system of ACCURATELY calculating shipping charges. 3D Cart's "if more than one item is put in the cart it reverts to a 1" x 1" x 1" box" is terrible if you ship larger packages that have extra fees like "additional handling".

                            I tried the "Ships by Itself" but that doesn't work well for our situation either...because then the shipping cost comes out astronomically high and we'd lose orders.

                            I tried adding a little bit to each product for the shipping cost...that helped, but on bigger orders it noticeably inflates the shipping so I stopped that, too.

                            I tried doing something today where I could have TWO UPS Ground methods...one for order weight 0 lbs - 55 lbs with a mark-up, and one for 56 lbs - 250 lbs. without a markup (since those usually come out somewhat better/more accurate). But it's not allowing me to have 2 real-time UPS Ground algorithms based on weight at the same time. So, I'm back to square one.

                            An add-on app, or anything that is better than the current built-in shipping calculator would be the best thing 3D Cart could do in order to attract merchants who ship large packages.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I don't have much to add to this (except to say that having a shipping quote system that works for every client is extremely difficult), but:

                              I do have multiple real-time shipping methods existing simultaneously. I have one for USPS Priority Mail for orders 0-2lbs, and one for 2.01+ lbs.

                              Maybe UPS would work differently, but I don't think so?

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