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Free Shipping

Just about any business can benefit from offering free shipping in some form. Free shipping can boost conversion and reduce abandoned carts. When used with up-sells or cross-sells, free shipping can increase your average order value. This article will guide you through the different ways to take advantage of offering free shipping to your customers.

 

Be careful! The methods listed in this article will only work if the customer is ordering from a destination that has been enabled in the Shipping Manager. That destination must also have a functional shipping method (such as flat rate shipping or FedEx) in addition to the free shipping option, or the customer will receive an error at checkout.

 
 

By Destination

Use this method if you want to:

  • apply free shipping only to orders within the specified shipping zone
  • limit free shipping to orders over $X
  • offer free shipping as well as other shipping options (such as expedited shipping)

Go to SettingsShipping and click Configure or Edit next to the shipping zone you want free shipping available in.

Shipping zone

Toggle on the switch to the right of Free shipping.

Free shipping method toggled on shipping zone details

In the Free Shipping Options pop-up, set the minimum order total threshold, whether the discounted order subtotal will be used for eligibility, and if products with fixed pricing should be excluded.

Free Shipping Options pop up

  • Limit to order over $X — limits free shipping to orders over a certain amount
  • Use discounted order subtotal (Recommended) — will use the discounted order subtotal to determine eligibility for free shipping
  • Make products with a Fixed Shipping Cost ineligible for Free Shipping — will exclude products with a fixed shipping price

Click Submit in the pop-up, then Done.

Your free shipping method is now up and active. If you need to disable it, simply toggle off the switch.

 

Pro Tip! Depending on your needs, you might consider a Ship by Order Total or Ship by Weight method with $0 instead. These let you change the display name (like "Local Pick-Up"), specify costs for orders that don't meet the order total for free shipping, or base shipping prices on the order weight instead.

 
 

With an Automatic Promotion

Use this method if you want to:

  • apply free shipping automatically when certain conditions are met
  • offer free shipping internationally
  • limit free shipping to customers who spend a minimum amount in a specific brand or category
  • restrict free shipping to certain customer groups, currencies, shipping destinations, and days of the week
  • offer free shipping as well as other shipping options (such as expedited shipping)
 

These instructions are for the advanced promotion editor. To learn about creating an automatic promotion with the legacy editor, see Automatic Promotions.

Go to Marketing › Promotions, then click + Create and select With advanced editor from the menu.

Enter a name for your promotion and set a promotion schedule, including start date, end date, and any days or weeks you want to exclude from the promotion’s availability.

Name your promotion and assign its active dates.

Under Targeting, set the restrictions you want to apply to your promotion, including currency, customer group, and shipping destination. For example, if you want to create a free shipping promotion in the United States, you can restrict the currency to USD and the shipping destination to the United States.

Set up any restrictions to your promotion under Targeting.

To specify the conditions of your promotion, click + Add rule. In the discount template window, select Spend $100, get free shipping to begin with the pre-filled rules for a free shipping promotion, or select Custom rules if you want to start from scratch.

Select the free shipping template for pre-filled rules.

On the rules page, specify how your customers become eligible for the promotion. For example, you can grant free shipping to customers who spend at least $50, or to customers who buy at least 3 products from a certain category. For more information on setting up conditions, see Advanced Promotions.

Select the prerequisites for your free shipping promotion.

If it is not already pre-filled, select Free Shipping from the rewards dropdown. Additionally, you can restrict the promotion to one or more shipping zones.

Specify free shipping and the shipping zones that will be included.

After managing the promotion rules, click Add rule to promotion. This will take you back to the Create Promotion page where you can review your promotion's details and click Create promotion when you're ready.

 
 

With a Coupon Promotion

Use this method if you want to:

  • require customers to use a coupon code in order to obtain free shipping
  • limit free shipping to orders over $X
  • limit free shipping to certain products
  • limit free shipping to certain customer groups
  • limit free shipping to certain brands
  • limit free shipping to certain currencies
 

These instructions are for the advanced promotion editor. To learn about creating a coupon promotion with the legacy editor, see Coupon Promotions.

Go to Marketing › Promotions and click on the Coupon tab. Then click + Create and select With advanced editor from the menu.

Enter a promotion name for internal reference. The coupon code that your customer enters at checkout is automatically generated, but you can customize it in the Coupon Code field.

Enter an internal name and a coupon code for the promotion.

Under Schedule, specify the promotion's start and end date, as well as any days or weeks you wish to exclude.

Settings for managing the promotion schedule

Specify any currency, shipping destination, or customer group restrictions for your promotion in the Targeting section.

Coupon restrictions are managed under Targeting

Click + Add rule to begin adding conditions and rewards to the coupon. In the discount template window, select Select $100, get free shipping to begin with pre-filled rules for a free shipping promotion, or select Custom rules if you want to start from scratch.

The discount template window with a free shipping template selected

On the rules page, select the prerequisites for free shipping, such as minimum order value or product quantity. If it is not already pre-filled, select Free Shipping from the rewards dropdown, and specify any shipping zones you want to limit the promotion to.

Example rules for a free shipping coupon promotion

After setting up your rules, click Add rule to promotion. Review your coupon promotion's details and click Create promotion when ready.

 
 

Product-by-Product Basis

Use this method if you want to:

  • have free shipping on a product for all destinations set up in the Shipping settings
  • have 'free shipping' as the only shipping option at checkout
  • take that product out of shipping calculations in orders that also contain other products
  • have 'free shipping' display on the product page when enabled in Store Settings
 

Be careful! Turning free shipping on for an individual product causes it to ship for free in all shipping destinations you have set up, regardless of any other shipping settings.

One product at a time

Go to ProductsView, and click the name of the product you plan to ship for free.

Scroll down to the Shipping Details and check the box for Free Shipping.

Free shipping in product settings

Save your changes.

Multiple products at a time

Go to ProductsView. Check the box to the left of the products you plan to ship for free. You may want to increase the View in the top-right of the menu to 100.

Click Choose an Action at the top of the menu, select Bulk Edit, then click Confirm.

Products checked for bulk editing

Locate the Free Shipping column to the far right, and check the box to enable free shipping for the products you plan to ship for free.

Column on the bulk editing screen showing which products currently have free shipping enabled on the product level

Save your changes.

 

Need more advanced shipping features? We recommend using our integration with ShipperHQ. ShipperHQ enables you to ship on a per product per zone level, provide different shipping options based on customer group, provide different shipping options based on shipping origin, and more.

 
 

Offering In-Store Pickup

The best online retailers offer a variety of ways for customers to receive their products. Traditional shipping options are certainly the most common, but by offering in-store pickup and payment, you combine the ease of shopping online with the promptness of purchasing from a local retailer. By offering in-store pickup and payment, your shoppers can:

  • avoid shipping costs
  • make sure the product is available
  • buy now and pickup later
 

Interested in Buy Online Pickup in Store (BOPIS)? We support several third-party solutions in the App Marketplace.

Setting up an "In-store Pickup" Shipping Method

These steps will cover how to set up a local pickup zone. This sets the geographical perimeter for which customers can pick up their order. See Offline Payment Methods for how to set up an in-store payment method.

Anyone whose shipping address falls inside this zone will be able to use any shipping methods you create for it. Keep in mind that they will only have access to the methods set up for this zone, so you will want to add your usual shipping methods in addition to the local pickup method.

Creating a Local Shipping Zone

1. Go to SettingsShipping.

2. Click Add shipping zone, then select Add a custom zone.

Add a custom zone highlighted in the Add a shipping zone list button in Shipping Manager

3. Fill out the following details:

  • Name — the zone's name (e.g. "Local")
  • Type — select Advanced Selection and select Multiple postcodes.
  • Country — select your country

Add a custom zone based on multiple postcodes popup

 

Creating a state-based zone? If you want to open up in-store pickup to anyone within your state, change Type to Selection of States or Provinces, then select your country and state. To open it up to anyone in multiple states, select Advanced SelectionMultiple states/provinces across countries and select your preferred states.

4. Enter the ZIP or postal code(s) in the text field under the country field. Each postal code must be on its own line.

See Shipping Zones for more tips on adding ZIP codes. For tools to help you create ZIP codes within a specific radius, city, or county, see Additional Resources.

5. Click Submit. You have now created a local zone.

Creating a local pickup shipping method

1. Click Configure for your newly created local shipping zone.

Configure zone button highlighted next to a Local zone

2. Locate the toggle switch next to the Pickup In Store method, and switch the toggle to ON.

Pickup In Store swtich in the ON position

3. Enter a display name or use the default one provided.

Pickup in Store display name field

4. Save your changes.

 

Pro Tip! - Remember to include additional shipping methods in your local zone, so that customers in that zone can still opt to have their order shipped to them.

Managing Your In-Store Orders

Orders created with the in-store pickup and in-store payment methods require offline transactions to occur, so they will need to be manually updated.

Pay and pick up in store

Orders placed by customers using both the in-store payment and in-store pickup methods will be marked as Awaiting Payment in BigCommerce.

When the customer arrives, take payment using your normal brick-and-mortar payment processing.

After receiving payment, locate the order in the BigCommerce control panel under View Orders and change the order's status to Completed.

Completed order status on the View Orders screen

Pick up in store

Orders that have been paid for online will be assigned the Awaiting Fulfillment status.

When your customer arrives to pick up their products, locate their order in the View Orders section of your BigCommerce control panel. Change the order's status to Completed.

Completed order status on the View Orders screen

 
 

FAQ

Will a free shipping coupon only affect the category/products selected?

The coupon applies free shipping to the whole order if a shopper has a qualified item in their cart. This means that if they put in an item that is not qualified, so long as a qualified product is also in their cart, the order gets free shipping.

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