Ship with ShipStation

ShipStation is a web-based shipping fulfilment service for eCommerce retailers. Designed to streamline the fulfilment process, ShipStation integrates with all major eCommerce shopping carts and shipping and fulfilment platforms. 

NOTE: If you don't intend to use a shipping fulfilment service, you can set up your own predefined shipping rates; for more information, see Setting up a shipping method and rates.

This article explains how to get started with ShipStation and includes these topics:

Before you begin

Before you get started, you'll need to set up an account with the carrier or carriers you want to use with ShipStation. Make sure to choose a carrier that provides the services you need, including delivery to locations where you sell your products. Also check to make sure the carrier is supported by ShipStation. Next, sign up for an account with ShipStation. 

IMPORTANT: ShipStation does not recognize currencies. When setting up your ShipStation account, please ensure the currency you configure in ShipStation matches your store's currency (in the eCom Back Office).

Once you complete these steps, you're now ready to set up ShipStation with Lightspeed eCom.

Setting up ShipStation

Setting up ShipStation involves a few simple steps that you perform in both your ShipStation account and within the ShipStation integration in your eCom Back Office; these steps include:

  1. Set up a shipping carrier in ShipStation
  2. Select a label layout in ShipStation
  3. Generate your ShipStation API keys
  4. Configure ShipStation in the eCom Back Office
  5. Set up Lightspeed eCom as a selling channel in ShipStation
  6. Manage your carriers and service levels
  7. Set up international shipping

1. Set up a shipping carrier in ShipStation

NOTE: Before proceeding, make sure you have an account with the shipping carrier(s) that you want to set up with ShipStation. 

  1. Log in to your ShipStation account.
  2. Click Welcome at the top-left.

    shipping_carrier.png

  3. On the Welcome page, click the link to add a shipping carrier and follow the on-screen prompts.

2. Select a label layout in ShipStation

  1. In your ShipStation account, click Welcome at the top-left.
  2. On the Welcome page, click the link to select a label layout and follow the on-screen prompts. 

3. Generate your ShipStation API keys

NOTE: If you already have ShipStation API keys and you're using them with another service or application, DO NOT regenerate them. Copy your existing API Key and Secret into eCom. Regenerating the API keys will require you to update the other services or applications where you use them.

  1. In your ShipStation account, click the gear icon at the top-right to access your account settings.
  2. On the settings page, click Account > API Settings (from the menu on the left).
  3. Under API Keys, click the Generate New API Keys button to generate your keys.
  4. Copy the values for API Key and API Secret. You'll need to paste these values when configuring ShipStation in the eCom Back Office. 

    shipstationapi.png

4. Configure ShipStation in the eCom Back Office

  1. Log in to the eCom Back Office.
  2. From the main menu on the left, go to Settings > STORE SETTINGS > Shipment Methods.
  3. Click Connect ShipStation.
  4. Under LOGIN INFORMATION, configure the following:

    Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_18.26.56.png

    • Enable this integration - Toggle this setting to the on position.
    • API key - Copy the API key you generated in your ShipStation account and paste it here.
    • API Secret - Copy the API Secret from ShipStation and paste it here.
  5. Under CONFIGURATION, set the following options:

    Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_18.43.31.png

    • Calculate taxes automatically - Toggle this setting to the on position for Lightspeed to automatically calculate taxes on shipping costs, provided you've set this up for your store under Settings > PAYMENT SETTINGS > Taxes.
    • Company phone number - Enter your business phone number. Make sure this matches the phone number you've set up with the carrier or carriers associated with your ShipStation account.
    • Handling costs - Toggle this setting to the on position and add a fixed handling fee as a dollar or percentage value to cover any additional handling and/or labor charges. This can help you cover extra costs like insurance or signature at delivery (which are not included in shipping rates returned by ShipStation in your online store's checkout pages).
    • Non-delivery option for international orders - Specify how you want carriers to treat international packages that DO NOT get delivered to their intended recipient.
  6. Under DEFAULT PACKAGE SETUP, specify default package dimensions for your products. This is helpful if you haven't configured weight and dimensions for your products and/or products variants.

    NOTE: If a given product/variant has weight and dimensions configured, those settings override the default dimensions you set here.

    Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_19.07.43.png

  7. Under ORIGIN ADDRESS, enter your company's mailing address; this will appear on return shipment labels. Make sure this matches the address you've set up with the carrier or carriers associated with your ShipStation account.

    Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_19.10.13.png

  8. Click Save.

5. Set up Lightspeed eCom as a selling channel in ShipStation

  1. Log in to your ShipStation account.
  2. click Welcome at the top.

    selling_channel.png

  3. On the Welcome page, click Connect a channel.
  4. In the Search box, type custom store.
  5. Click the Custom Store icon.
  6. In the popup window that displays, configure the following fields:

    Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_19.25.37.png

    • URL to Custom XML Page
      • For stores in the United States, Canada and Australia, enter https://services.shoplightspeed.com/webhooks/shipstation.xml
      • For stores in the United Kingdom, enter https://services.webshopapp.com/webhooks/shipstation.xml
    • Username/Password - Enter the Username and Password associated with your ShipStation integration in the eCom Back Office; to get the Username and Password:
      1. In the eCom Back Office, go to the ShipStation page (Settings > STORE SETTINGS > Shipment Methods > ShipStation).
      2. Under LOGIN INFORMATION, click the See Selling Channel details button.
      3. In the popup that displays, copy the Username and Password (by clicking the corresponding copy buttons):

        Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_21.01.59.png

  7. Go back to your ShipStation account and paste the Username and Password in their corresponding fields.
  8. Click the Test Connection button in the ShipStation popup.
  9. Once the connection is successful, click Connect.

6. Manage your carriers and service levels

Manage the carriers and service levels that you offer to your customers. (To manage carriers, you need to first set them up with ShipStation.)

By default, as soon as you set up the ShipStation integration, eCom displays all the carriers associated with your ShipStation account in your online store's checkout pages, and also enables  each carrier's service levels.

Depending on your business needs and your customer demographics, you may want to only offer specific carriers and services. For example, if you see a trend where the majority of your customers use the least expensive service level, perhaps disabling more expensive service levels will increase a customer's likelihood to purchase and reduce shopping cart abandonment rates.

To manage your carriers and service levels:

  1. From the main menu of the eCom Back Office, go to Settings > STORE SETTINGS > Shipment Methods.
  2. Click ShipStation.
  3. Scroll down to the CARRIERS section.

    carriers_1.png

    The carriers you've set up with ShipStation appear here. If you don't see your carriers, or if you don't see a carrier you recently associated with your ShipStation account, click Sync carriers. If the problem persists, double-check your API Key and Secret.

  4. Manage your carriers:
    1. Prevent a carrier from displaying in your online store's checkout pages by setting its Show during checkout toggle to the off position. You must have, at least, one carrier enabled.
    2. Click Edit to configure a carrier's service levels.

      carriers_2.png

    3. For some carriers, such as USPS and UPS, you'll also need to configure default package sizes:

      Screen_Shot_2018-01-10_at_21.47.38.png

  5. Click Save once you've finished.

7. Set up international shipping with ShipStation

When all the products in your customer's shopping cart have affiliated Harmonized System (HS) tariff codes, they will have the option of international shipping with ShipStation at checkout.  

  1. From the main menu of the eCom Back Office, go to Settings > GENERAL SETTINGS > Advanced.
  2. Under STORE, enable HS Codes.
  3. Click Save. Return to the main dashboard.
  4. From the main menu of the eCom Back Office, go to Settings > STORE SETTINGS > Shipping Methods.
  5. Click Configure ShipStation.
  6. Configure the new options under SETTINGS.
  7. Click Save.

To add HS codes to products:

  1. Select the product on the Products page.
  2. Under INVENTORY & VARIANTS, click the corresponding variant to open the Edit variant popup.
  3. Under IDENTIFIERS, enter a Harmonized System code in the HS code field. Only the first 6 digits of the HS code are necessary. Click Find an HS Code below the field if the code is unknown.
  4. Click Save.

Repeat the procedure for all products that you want to make available for international shipping.

Managing and fulfilling your orders in ShipStation

When a customer places an order in your online store, the order appears in both your eCom Back Office (on the Orders page) and in your ShipStation account. Any change that you make to an order's status in ShipStation is automatically reflected in eCom, and vice versa. For example, if you mark an order as shipped in ShipStation, the order's status will update to shipped in eCom. 

We strongly recommend that you manage your orders in ShipStation (and NOT in eCom), including setting insurance costs, updating the status of a shipment, etc. This is particularly important for bulk actions, such as bulk printing labels, because performing bulk actions in eCom will impact ShipStation's API rate limit.

To manage orders in ShipStation:

  1. Log in to your ShipStation account.
  2. Click Orders at the top.
  3. On the ShipStation orders page, click the order you want to manage.

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ShipStation API rate limit

ShipStation has a rate limit on API calls. The current rate limit for each API Key/Secret pair is 40 requests per minute. When this limit is reached, ShipStation will refuse further API connection requests until the time resets (at the beginning of the next 60 seconds). The potential impacts to your online store include:

  • (If ShipStation is the only fulfilment service you've set up) No shipping method will be available at checkout for your customers.
  • You may be unable to update the ShipStation integration in the eCom Back Office.

To avoid exceeding ShipStation's API rate limit, we recommend that you:

  • Limit the number of carriers that you set up with ShipStation to 2.
  • Perform all your order fulfilment activities in ShipStation (instead of within eCom).
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