A Complete Guide on WooCommerce Shipping Classes

Shipping is a major part of any eCommerce business. Providing shipping options can reduce abandoned cart rates and satisfy your customers as well.

Free shipping can reduce the abandonment carts rate by 18% and increase average order value by 97%.

Calculating shipping costs can be a tedious task if you have products of different sizes and weights. Without proper calculation, you may end up charging lower shipping rates for bulkier products that cost more. However, if you are using WooCommerce, then learning how to use shipping classes in WooCommerce can benefit you.

The shipping class options in WooCommerce will help you-

  • Manage varied product categories
  • Approach the range of products differently for shipping
  • Specify Delivery prices based on product groups or categories

We are going to discuss how to use WooCommerce shipping for your store. After reading our guide you will become an expert in managing to ship for your WooCommerce store.

Let's dive in.

Difference Between Shipping Rates and Shipping Classes

how to use shipping classes in WooCommerce

Before learning how to use shipping classes in WooCommerce, you should know the difference between shipping rates and shipping classes.

Shipping class is a way of grouping products in the same class. For example, you can classify all your large items as Bulky. Bulky is the shipping class.

Now, you need to set the price for the Bulky shipping class. That is called Shipping Rates. it specifies the cost of the shipping class. So all items with the shipping class bulky could have an excess $100 charge. This is the rate.

How to Use Shipping Classes in WooCommerce- 4 Simple Steps

So now that you know about the difference between Shipping classes and shipping rates, it is time to learn how to use shipping classes in WooCommmerce.

With WooCommerce shipping classes, you can assign different shipping criteria to different items. For example-

  • Heavy items: If you sell furniture products like a couch or chair, then they can come with an additional delivery fee.
  • Lightweight items: If your products can fit in an envelope and do not need a box, it will allow you to set a special shipping class and less expensive postage.
  • Fragile items: Pottery is one example of a product that could be fragile and require bubble wrap and an extra-large box to be sent safely.
  • Specific packaging: Items that require specific containment, like poster tubes. Some artwork or posters you sell might have to be shipped in a poster tube.

Note: We are assuming you have already set up your WooCommerce store and configured all other customizations. If you haven't you can check out this guide on WooCommerce Customization.

Here are the steps you need to follow-

  • Step 01: Adding a Shipping Class
  • Step 02: Applying a Shipping Class to a Product
  • Step 03: Setting a Cost Rate for the WooCommerce Shipping Class
  • Step 4: Testing How WooCommerce Shipping Class Works

Step 01: Adding a Shipping Class

First of all, you need to create a shipping class. To do that, log in to your WordPress backend and go to WooCommerce–> Settings. There you need to click on the Shipping tab.

Adding a shipping class to your WooCommerce shop

You will find various shipping options including Shipping Zones, Shipping Options, and Shipping Classes. Click on the Shipping Classes option.

Shipping classes

At the bottom right-hand side corner, you will find the Add Shipping Class button. Click on it.

Add shipping class

Now you need to add,

  • Shipping Class Name – As the name suggests, this allows you to set a name for your shipping class. 
  • Slug – WooCommerce uses your shipping class name as its default slug by default, but you may set an alternative name here. 
  • Description – You can add this content for your own reference. 
  • Product Count – This shows how many items have been added to this shipping class. When you attach a product to this shipping class, it will appear here. 

Now, click on the Save Shipping Classes button to save your shipping class.

Save Shipping Class

You can edit the shipping class at any time you want. Just click on the Edit button.

Edit button

Step 02: Applying a Shipping Class to a Product

After creating your Shipping Class, now it is time to add products to your shipping class. For that, you need to go to Products–> All Products.

All products

Now select your product and click on the Edit button. You will find the Edit button when you hover over the product.

Find the Shipping tab and in the Shipping Class section, choose your shipping class from the drop-down menu.

Add shipping class to product

Adding Shipping Class to Bulk Products

You can add your shipping class to multiple products at a time. You don't need to enter the product editing page every time. Just check off every product you want to add the shipping class too,

Choose bulk products

From the Bulk option, click on the edit button-

Click on Bulk edit button

You will find various options for bulk editing. You will find the Shipping Class option also. From the drop-down box, select your shipping class and click on the Apply button.

Select shipping for bulk products

Note: WooCommerce advises you to add one more step after configuring shipping classes. Go to Dashboard > WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Shipping Options and then you need to enable the debug mode. There check if all your shipping is updated.

Enable debug mode

After checking don't forget to disable the debug mode.

Step 03: Setting a Cost Rate for the WooCommerce Shipping Class

After creating and assigning your shipping class, now it is time to add the shipping class cost.

To set shipping class rates, go to WooCommerce > Settings and click on the Shipping Tab again. You need to edit the Shipping Zone to enter a cost rate. Choose a Shipping Zone and click on the Manage shipping methods button just like in the image below,

Manage shipping methods

If you have already added shipping methods, then click on the Edit button of the selected shipping method.

Edit for shipping method

In the pop-up, you can add a price next to the bulky shipping class. Note that the standard cost is set at 0. If you change the standard cost your shipping class costs will change.

Add amount in shipping method

You are done.

Step 4: Testing How WooCommerce Shipping Class Works

In order to confirm if your shipping class is working or not you need to do some testing.

Go to your shop page and purchase a product that doesn't have your selected shipping class and a product that has your selected shipping class assigned.

On the checkout page, you will see that both shipping charges have been applied.

Cart view

So your shipping class is working perfectly.

Top WooCommerce Shipping Plugins

If you want more customization in your shipping method like hiding other shipping options when free shipping is offered, using filters for shipping classes in the checkout page, or setting up conditional shipping, you can use WooCommerce Shipping plugins.

Here are the top free WooCommerce shipping plugins you will find in the WordPress repository:

  • ELEX WooCommerce USPS Shipping Plugin
  • WooCommerce Table Rate Shipping Plugin
  • Table Rate for WooCommerce
  • Conditional Shipping for WooCommerce.

How to Use Shipping Classes in WooCommerce FAQ(s)

How is shipping class determined?

There are four different aspects or characteristics that determine any given commodities freight class. The characteristics that determine a commodity's class are density, storability, handling, and liability.

How does WooCommerce shipment tracking work?

Provide customers with an easy way to track their shipment with WooCommerce Shipment Tracking. After adding details to an order, the tracking information will appear in emails, the order tracking page, and the order view page in their account section

How do I add multiple shipping methods in WooCommerce?

You can go to WooCommerce > settings > shipping > Shipping zones. Select your shipping zone, and edit it. Add a new shipping method.

How to Use Table rate Shipping in Dokan?

Dokan is a multivendor marketplace plugin powered by WooCommerce. You can use the table rate shipping method for your marketplace using Dokan. Just activate the Table Rate Shipping module and configure the settings and you are good to go.

Set Your Shipping Classes in the Right Way!

WooCommerce shipping classes help you categorize your products. You can assign different shipping classes for different products and charge accordingly. Also, customers can know about the shipping charges when they purchase products.

Our guide will help you set up shipping classes and create a transparent checkout process for your eCommerce store. If you face any troubles while setting up WooCommerce shipping classes, then do let us know in the comment section.

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Rabbir Shad
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Rabbir Shad

Shad is a Content Writer with expertise in eCommerce, SEO, WordPress, and Technology. He has a passion for Football. Besides, he likes to spend time reading a quality book or watching any classic film.

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