The Shipping Inspector
Posted by Doug Sherman (Import), Last modified by Doug Sherman on 04 Dec 13 10:37 AM
How are my rates getting calculated?
If you are using ShopCart, ShipCalc or AiShip, you can see the factors that are generating the final rates for each of your rated shipping services. We call this the "Shipping Inspector." The Shipping Inspector is only viewable by you, NOT by your customers.
(Our Mals Plug-In supports a more concise version of the Shipping Inspector, called the Rate Inspector.)
To view the Shipping Inspector, you will need to sign into your AuctionInc. account and then open another browser window to your product page. When you have done this and added an item to your Cart/Calculator, you will see a checkbox called "View Shipping Inspector" in the lower left of the cart/calc page. Check this box and press click Update.
At the bottom of the page you will see a summarized breakdown for each carrier service you have enabled. Each service is divided into the number of packages we have determined necessary to fit within the weight and dimensional requirements for this service. For each package, you are able to see its actual weight (the weight of the items in the package plus the weight of packaging materials) and the rated weight (the weight of the package rated for this service; some services round up fractional weights).
The package fees are further broken down into carrier fees, handling fees, and insurance fees. Carrier Fees include the carrier rate and surcharges. Surcharges can include fuel surcharges, extended area coverage surcharge, oversized charges and surcharges for Special Carrier Services (for example delivery confirmation, registered mail, etc.). Handling fees are the package level handling fees you have specified for a shipping a package by this service, including flat rates, percentage of the package value, and/or percentage of the ship rate. The insurance fee is the cost of insuring this package (assuming the package meets the criteria for your your insurance configuration).
Finally the Shipping Inspector totals up the costs of shipping each package, adds in your order handling fee, and presents the total ship rate for the order.
Should a service fail to rate the Shipping Inspector will return associated errors to help you track down the cause of this failure.
If you have a question on a rate, you can use the information contained in the Inspector and compare the results to the online calculators available on the carrier websites. Since we are essentially doing the same thing, under the covers, given the same item data, same adresses, and same options, you should in most instances be able to match the rates to the penny.