In this lesson, you will learn about:
- Shipping Zones and Charges
- Shipping From Address
- Flat Rate Shipping
- Free Shipping
- Ship By Tables

Taking time to set up shipping charges is a must when starting an online store.
Whether you want to offer free shipping, real time quotes, some sort of flat rate offer or, maybe a medley of all those things you’ve gotta set it up in your control panel first.
In this video, we’re going to show you how easy it is to work with the Bigcommerce Shipping Manager.
First thing to know is that creating a shipping charge to display during the checkout process consists of two parts - Shipping Zones and Shipping Charges. A shipping zone refers the geographic areas that you want to be able to ship to. If you decide you do not want to create a Zone for a specific area, customers will not be able to buy a product and have it shipped to that address. This means, if you’d like, you can start shipping to select areas in which you feel comfortable first and then expand your reach from there. Yeah, I’m talkin’ international!
Some examples of a shipping zone could be “North America,” or perhaps, “the 48 contiguous states,” or even “local pickup.” You can chunk geographic areas however you like to help save money for your business and keep those shipping costs really reasonable. Statistics heavily show that high shipping charges tend to discourage customers from completing the checkout process. Cart abandonment is no-goodsky when you’re selling online, so, just be aware.
Now, a shipping charge is how you will ship your goods and how much you’ll charge.
For your shipping charge, you can select something like FedEx Ground, UPS NextDay Air, Flat Rate Shipping, Free shipping, USPS by Endicia. Yea you’ve got tons of options to help accommodate your specific business needs.
Once you’re in your store’s control panel, head to Store Settings....and select Shipping.
This will bring you to the Bigcommerce Shipping Manager. Ok, first things first. You can find your “Shipping From” address right here. This address indicates where your business physically ships its products from. If this address isn’t present or accurate for some reason - take a moment and adjust it as needed. This address will impact Real Time Quotes and represents the address listed on your shipping labels if you decide to
print them from your control panel.
Now, you can find your current, default Shipping zone right here. This zone, as it is, means your store is only shipping to THIS area. In this instance you can see we are here in the United States. This zone is quite obviously turned “ON.” If a zone is ever in the “OFF” position, customers will not be able to purchase in that zone. Ok, if you’d like to add more zones or areas in which to ship, select “Add Country.” Go ahead and select a new country zone from this menu. Then, save, and great, you’ve added Canada as a shipping destination. Now, another quick example. If you wanted to open up your store globally, you would drop down the menu next to the Add Country button, and
naturally select “Add the Rest of the World.”
Please remember, no matter what, if you do not assign a Shipping Charge to a Zone customers will not be able to not purchase and ship to that particular zone. So, for this video example let’s add Shipping Charges to our default zone. Remember a Shipping
Charge is how you’re going to ship your product in that area.
First, select “edit.” You’ll see that currently you have that pre-configured “Flat Rate” turned “ON.” This is that default charge Bigcommerce set on your store, so you could start taking orders immediately. If you’d like to make edits to this - just click edit! You’ll see here I’ve entered a 4.95 flat rate shipping charge. This means any customer who orders anything from my store will be presented with a 4.95 Shipping charge during checkout. Remember this will only take effect for those customers shipping to an address in the United States, because we’re setting shipping charges for our United States Zone.
If you do decide to adjust this $4.95 rate, simply change the number in this box. Also know you can always change any Display Name to whatever you’d like to show during the checkout process. It could read “Flat Rate Per Order” or whatever’s gonna make the most sense to your customer. Last but not least, use the drop down menu to decide how you’re going charge - per order or per item.
Here is another option. As you can imagine, Free Shipping will convert a lot of shopping carts into sales. If you want to offer Free Shipping turn it “ON” - right here. Now you can choose at what order amount you’d like to start offering Free Shipping. You could enter $0 which means free shipping on anything. Or, as an example, you can set up Free Shipping over $99 for the United States. It’s a great tool to boost your average order value.
Now, the last Flat-Rate option is “Ship By.” To add this charge, flip the switch ON. This allows us to create shipping-charge ranges based on either: weight or order total.
One thing you’ll want to be aware of are weight ranges. Bigcommerce starts at 0 to 20 pounds, but that’s a pretty wide range for most stores. A package that’s 1 pound is going to be much cheaper than shipping a package that’s like 19 pounds. Let’s replace this 20 with a 2. Then, set a price on any orders that weigh between 0 and 2 pounds.
For this example, we’ll put $4.95. Now customers will be charged $4.95 if they have less than 2 pounds worth of product in their cart. How do you know how much your products weigh? If you have not already watched or read the tutorials on adding a product, we recommend doing that now. Each product you add to your store has a place for adding it’s total weight.
Ok, select the green plus sign to add another range - 2 pounds to 4 pounds for instance. This will likely be a little bit more expensive to ship, so I’ll set it at $5.95 for this example. You can keep adding ranges all the way up to your highest order weight you’ll be offering. This could be 100lbs, could be 1,000lbs - it all depends on your business. OK, a little note for you, as you get higher you probably don’t need to continue with 2 pound ranges. You could move to 20, 50 or 100 pounds depending on your shipping model or products. A cool thing to know is that this “ship by” table can be edited at any time. If you find that your 11 pound package was cheaper to ship than you estimated, then just come back into your Shipping Manager and adjust the rate.
So, you’ve got things just the way you’d like for now - be sure to save at this point.
Then, we highly recommend going to the front of you store - here - to spot check your Shipping charges. To save some ti, we’ve added a few products to the cart and logged in as a customer. When you get to Step 4: “Shipping Method” you’ll be presented with all the Shipping Charges you’ve created for this Zone. But, did you catch that we’re not seeing free shipping? Remember, we set the Free Shipping option to apply to orders only over $99.
...well, now you’re a shipping wiz. Tune into our next BCU video if this one didn’t cover what you were looking for.