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How to setup Real Time Shipping for BigCommerce?

Last updated: June 01, 2024
This article has been written and researched by our expert Avada through a precise methodology. Learn more about our methodology





One of the most challenging issues for many businesses in BigCommerce is how to reasonably determine the best shipping strategy. The 2 days delivery or free shipping can be useful methods to reduce shopping cart abandonment and increase conversions. However, they are not always feasible as businesses may not be able to cover the cost. An e-commerce shipping strategy is not always only about just free shipping and fast delivery but also about how to charge customers the right shipping amount, so they do not have to pay too much. Real-time shipping must be a shipping option that solves this problem.

What is real time shipping?

Real time shipping quotes

Real-time shipping is the most exact shipping rate that Bigcommerce automatically offers at the check-out for any given order. This shipping rate is accurately calculated in real time based on the order weight, parcel or product dimensions, origin, and delivery address.

Real-time shipping assists e-commerce businesses to avoid overcharging or undercharging their customers for delivery because it allows them to charge the actual amount that costs to ship the order.

Shipping carriers providing real time shipping rate

USPS, FedEx, UPS, Canada Post, Royal Mail, Australia Post or Zoom2u are some carrier companies that internationally BigCommerce can have built-in integration with to automatically show real time shipping rates for customers’ orders at checkout.

During checkout, shoppers will simply select the service that they like, and the selected shipping rate will be added to the order total. If rates are not available, the order will not be processed.

How to set up real time shipping quote

Step 1: Go to Store Setup > Shipping

Click Edit to fill shipping origin, which determines where the business ship it from

Go to Store Setup > Shipping

Step 2: Click Edit or Configure next to a shipping zone

Edit or Configure to set up shipping charges for a zone.

Click Edit or Configure next to a shipping zone > Shipping

Step 3: Scroll down to Real time shipping quotes and click Connect to connect your carrier choices

Scroll down to Real time shipping quotes and click Connect

Step 4: Configure the following setting

  • Display name
  • Drop-off Type
  • Packaging Type
  • Packing Method
  • Rate Type
  • Include Package Value
  • Destination Type

Configure the following setting

Pros of real time shipping versus flat time shipping

1. Calculate shipping costs automatically

Shopify has stated that 80% of stores overcharge for shipping when they have manually set them, which can increase the cart abandonment rate.

With Bigcommerce, the real time shipping rate will be displayed as soon as shoppers enter their shipping destination. They do not have to do complex calculations themselves to get the right amount for shipping.

2. Charge customers the right amount

Since a flat shipping rate is determined by how much shoppers can stuff into an issued box, shipping heavy items will help shoppers save money while it can be more expensive if their merchandise is lightweight. Therefore, real time shipping rate surmounts this downside of flat-rate method as it charges customers the correct amount every time, which reduces the worry of shoppers about being charged too much or not enough and promotes a feeling of honesty.

3. Drive more international sales

Determining international shipping cost can be tough. However, with real time shipping, shoppers will always get the accurate rate from any location. Expanding business scale internationally might be easier as a result.


Real time shipping might not be a one-size-fits-all shipping method for business; however, it will be a safe choice to protect your margin. Having this shipping strategy in place, pricing a delivery cost will no longer be that complicated due to varying factors like weights, dimension and shipping destination. Shoppers of Bigcommerce will definitely feel more assured when a precise real time shipping rate is visible to them at the check out.

Sam Nguyen is the CEO and founder of Avada Commerce, an e-commerce solution provider headquartered in Singapore. He is an expert on the Shopify e-commerce platform for online stores and retail point-of-sale systems. Sam loves talking about e-commerce and he aims to help over a million online businesses grow and thrive.

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