Looking for the best WooCommerce shipping plugins?
Shipping is, quite obviously, an incredibly important part of every eCommerce store.
You need to be able to calculate accurate shipping rates so that you control your costs. You need to be able to quickly ship out orders without wasting time. And you also need to be able to keep shoppers informed of when to expect their orders.
The plugins in this post can help you accomplish all of that and more – let’s dig in!
“Shipping” Is a Broad Category – Let’s Break It Down
Before we get into the best eCommerce shipping plugins for WordPress, it’s important to break down what “shipping” really means.
There are a lot of different parts of the shipping process. For example, you have:
- Accurately calculating shipping rates when shoppers go to check out.
- Printing shipping labels/packing slips and actually handing over boxes to your carrier.
- Informing shoppers of when they should expect their items to arrive (along with tracking information).
It’s unlikely that you’ll pick a single shipping plugin that solves everything. Instead, you’ll likely have multiple plugins for different pieces of the puzzle.
For example, you might have one plugin to generate shipping rates, another to help you print labels, etc.
To make it easier to find the right plugins, we’re going to divide this post into the three categories from above. That is, we’ll include separate sections for:
- Shipping rate plugins
- Shipping label plugins
- “User experience” plugins (e.g. tools to help your shoppers track their orders)
Then, we’ll include a final section with some SaaS tools that can handle multiple areas and have their own WooCommerce integration plugins. These are quite convenient, but are a little pricier.
Sound good? Let’s dig in…
Best WooCommerce Shipping Plugins for Calculating Rates
In this first section, we’ll cover plugins that help you more accurately calculate shipping rates for your store.
There are a few different ways that you can calculate shipping rates. The default options are:
- Flat rate – you charge a flat amount for shipping with a certain zone. E.g. $5 shipping for the continental USA.
- Free shipping – self-explanatory.
- Local pickup – also self-explanatory.
Most stores prefer more flexibility, though. Two options that give you that are:
- Table rate shipping
- Real-time shipping rates
With table rate shipping plugins, you can set up your own detailed shipping rules. For example:
- Orders under 5 lbs cost $5
- Orders between 5.1 lbs and 10 lbs cost $10
- Orders above 10.1 lbs cost $25
Good table rate shipping plugins will give you tons of different conditions, from weight, quantity, order value, and more.
On the other hand, real-time shipping rate plugins let you connect directly to the relevant shipping service to accurately calculate rates. For example, you could connect to USPS to calculate the exact shipping rate for each individual order when shoppers check out.
USPS Shipping Method and FedEx Shipping Method are both official plugins from the WooCommerce team that let you calculate accurate USPS/FedEx shipping rates for both shipments within the USA and global shipments.
I’m lumping them together because they have the same basic purpose/features – the difference is just in the shipping carrier that they help you connect to.
You can choose which shipment methods to offer from a large list of domestic and international shipping options. You can also include the flat-rate boxes, where applicable.
Both plugins also include a “box packer” tool to help you group items into the optimally sized boxes.
Both USPS Shipping Method and FedEx Shipping Method cost $79 each.
Flexible Shipping is one of the most popular WooCommerce table rate shipping plugins.
It comes in both a free version at WordPress.org, as well as a premium version with more features.
It lets you create unlimited shipping methods/rules using conditions like:
- Cart weight
- Cart total ($)
- Items (either total quantity or number of unique items)
It can also help you improve how you offer free shipping by adding various conditions that will (or won’t) trigger free shipping. And you can also opt to only show some shipping methods for logged-in users.
If you need more than the free version allows for, the premium version starts at $89.
Table Rate Shipping for WooCommerce is the most popular WooCommerce shipping plugin at Envato’s CodeCanyon marketplace, where it’s been purchased over 18,000 times with a 4.68-star rating.
It lets you create unlimited shipping rules based on over 15 conditions including:
- Shipping class
- Surface area
- Day of the week
- Product category
For each condition, you can apply it per order, per item, per line item, or per class.
You can also limit which methods are available based on user role.
Overall, if you want a really flexible table rate shipping plugin, this one is a good option.
It costs just $25, which makes it quite affordable.
Best WooCommerce Shipping Plugins for Printing Labels
Once you’ve displayed the proper shipping rate using one of the plugins above, you’ll need a way to actually ship the items from the order.
The plugins in this section help you print and pay for real shipping labels and otherwise speed up the administrative process of shipping orders.
4. WooCommerce Shipping (+ Jetpack)
WooCommerce Shipping, powered by Jetpack, is an official extension from Automattic/WooCommerce that helps you print and pay for USPS shipping labels right from your WooCommerce dashboard.
In the Orders interface, you’ll get a new Create shipping label button that lets you easily print out and pay for shipping labels for all of your outstanding orders.
Once you print out your labels, all you need to do is put them on the box, request a pickup from USPS, and you’re set to jet.
Because it’s built-in to the dashboard, it can save you from a lot of tedious tasks. For example, when you mark an order as completed after printing a label, the plugin can automatically include the USPS tracking number in the email – you don’t need to manually add the tracking number as some other solutions require.
One note about this plugin – while WooCommerce Shipping itself is free, you’ll need to pair it with the USPS Shipping Method plugin from the previous section to calculate accurate rates. As we covered above, that plugin costs $79.
You’ll also need to use Jetpack at your store, as the plugin’s underlying functionality requires Jetpack.
WooCommerce FedEx Shipping Plugin with Print Label helps you accomplish two main things:
- It can automatically calculate accurate shipping rates from FedEx (which makes it also fit in the previous category of plugins).
- It can help you print both shipping and return labels.
For the shipping labels, you can either generate them manually or automatically generate them when an order is placed.
It also offers a feature to help you include FedEx tracking information in notifications to customers.
So overall, if you plan to use FedEx for shipping, this plugin is about as close to an all-in-one solution as you’ll find.
WooCommerce FedEx Shipping Plugin with Print Label costs $69 for use on a single site.
WooCommerce Print Invoices & Packing lists doesn’t help you print the actual shipping labels for your carrier. Instead, this plugin helps you print invoices and packing lists that:
- You can include inside the box.
- You can use it to help you more efficiently pack boxes.
You can customize the design of the invoice using the real-time WordPress Customizer and you can also choose to exclude any virtual items from the packing list.
If you’re a developer, you’ll also love how many hooks it includes to further let you customize everything to your needs.
WooCommerce Print Invoices & Packing lists comes from SkyVerge, a well-known WooCommerce developer. It costs $79.
Best eCommerce Shipping Plugins for User Experience (Tracking)
While the above shipping plugins all focused on giving you more flexibility for calculating shipping rates and printing labels, there’s also another part of the shipping process that happens after you’ve shipped out a shopper’s order – helping your customers understand when to expect their packages.
The WooCommerce shipping plugins in this category focus on providing a better user experience when it comes to shipping.
Advanced Shipment Tracking for WooCommerce helps you manage and display tracking information from more than 150 different carriers.
Once you add tracking information, the plugin can help you display it both in notification emails and on shoppers’ account pages.
It can also help you create custom order statuses – e.g. “Shipped”, “Delivered”, etc.
For an even better experience, you can integrate with TrackShip (a paid service) to automatically send alerts for certain checkpoints like:
- In transit
- Out for delivery
The core Advanced Shipment Tracking for WooCommerce plugin is free. However, if you want the real-time status notifications, you’ll need to pay for TrackShip, which starts at $9 per month.
AfterShip is a freemium service/plugin that also helps you display tracking information to shoppers. In total, AfterShip supports over 550 different carriers around the world.
With the free version, you can attach tracking numbers to orders and create your own branded tracking information page. That is, shoppers can view the full tracking details on a page with your branding rather than, say, going to the USPS website.
With the premium version, you can also send out real-time notifications for different triggers including:
- In transit
- Out for delivery
- Failed delivery
AfterShip has a free plan that supports up to 50 trackings per month (but no real-time notifications). The full-featured paid plans start at $9 per month for up to 100 trackings.
All-in-One eCommerce Shipping Services (With Plugins)
Finally, these last two plugins are all-in-one SaaS shipping tools that have dedicated WooCommerce integration plugins.
You’ll need to pay a monthly subscription based on your shipment volume, which is different from the normal WordPress plugin approach.
However, the upside is that they’re quite convenient because they can handle everything from comparing rates to printing labels, updating tracking information, and more. They also handle multiple shipping providers, which is helpful if you’re located outside the USA or just want to use something beyond USPS.
Shippo is a SaaS tool that helps you do pretty much everything except calculate live rates at checkout.
Once you receive an order, Shippo can help you check rates from over 50 different carriers to find the best delivery option.
Then, you can print out labels and pay for the postage from the Shippo dashboard.
Shippo will use the WooCommerce API to automatically import new orders. And it will also update orders’ statuses and tracking information once you ship packages.
Finally, Shippo can also help you include a return shipping label – you’ll only be charged for the return label if your customer actually uses it.
WooCommerce users can get a 90-day free trial to experiment with Shippo. After that, you can use a pay as you go plan (with somewhat limited features) for just 5¢/label or you can pay a flat monthly rate starting at $10 per month.
Like Shippo, ShipStation is a SaaS tool that does pretty much everything except calculate live shipping rates at checkout.
Once a new order comes in, ShipStation will automatically import it via the WooCommerce API.
Then, you can compare rates from a number of different carriers and pay for and print labels from the ShipStation dashboard.
ShipStation can also help you enhance the experience for your customers with features such as:
- Customized notification emails with tracking information
- Your own branded tracking information page
- Customizable packing slips
You can also offer your own portal to help shoppers generate return labels if needed, which both makes you look professional and is user-friendly.
You can try ShipStation for free with a 30-day trial. After that, paid plans start at $9 per month for up to 50 shipments per month.
Enhance Your WooCommerce Shipping Today
With the WooCommerce shipping plugins on this list, you can more accurately calculate rates, streamline the process of printing labels and shipping products, and create a better user experience for your shoppers.
Don’t forget to also use a caching plugin for WooCommerce to boost your site’s performance!
Do you have any questions about WooCommerce shipping? Let us know in the comments!