We’ve talked about Lulu xPress before. Today we’re going to look at one specific aspect of this tool: Shipping.
What Is Lulu xPress?
The Lulu xPress Shopify app allows you to sell and fulfill book orders from your Shopify store in a fully automated way. If you’re new to our app, welcome! You can get all the basic information here. If you’re already familiar with our Shopify app and are getting your store up and running, this article will dig into one of the most important aspects of setting up your store: Shipping.
We’ll cover setting up your customer-facing shipping options within Shopify, tying them to your Lulu products, and ensuring those options come over to Lulu so the proper shipping method is used for each order.
Let’s Dig In
Once your Shopify product and corresponding Lulu xPress App project are created and connected, you’ll want to set up your shipping options through Shopify to allow your customers to pay for different methods, and also to ensure the proper shipping method passes over to Lulu with your orders.
We’ll cover setting up your customer facing shipping options within Shopify, tying them to your Lulu products, and ensuring those options come over to Lulu so the proper shipping method is used for each order. Let’s dig in.
All About Shipping
1 – Shopify Settings
Within Shopify’s settings click into “shipping and delivery.” From here you’ll see “Delivery methods at checkout.” You want to create a shipping profile that only includes the products that are connected to your Lulu xPress projects. Click “create new profile.” Name it something like “Lulu Books,” and add the products.
2 – Shipping Zones
Once you have your profile set up and products added, you’ll then create your shipping zones. These will correspond with each country you would like to set up shipping options in. For instance, if your main customer base will be in the US, but you also believe you will have some customers ordering from Canada and the UK, you will set up a shipping zone for the US, one for Canada, and one for the UK. Lastly, you can also set up a “Rest of World” zone that will cover all other countries.
3 – Weight Matters
IMPORTANT STEP! Before continuing, click into each of your Lulu connected Shopify Products (the actual product on Shopify) and make each product weigh one pound. This will not affect anything Shopify-related since that field is used by Shopify to create shipping labels for you. However, since you’re using Lulu for all shipping, the weight field is irrelevant. But we will use it in the next steps!
4 – Pricing Calculations
Open up a new tab in your browser and navigate to our pricing calculator here. Keep this open so you can see what Lulu will be charging you for shipping so you will be able to set your prices accordingly. Fill out any book information you like (our shipping prices are based on quantity, not product type, so it won’t matter what book specs you use in the calculator). Scroll to the bottom to see available shipping options and their rates.
5 – What The Customer Pays
For each shipping zone we created earlier, you will now need to add your customer-facing shipping rates. These are the methods and prices your customers will see at checkout. Click “manage rates” next to the “Lulu Books” shipping profile, then click into one of your shipping zones, let’s use the US for now. Click the “Add rate” button and choose “set up your own rates.” As an example, let’s set up a Mail option within the US. For the “rate name” we’ll title the first option “Mail.” For the price, navigate to the Lulu calculator tab you have open. The calculator tells me shipping one copy of any book via Mail in the US will currently cost me $4.94 from Lulu. Back to Shopify – now that you know what your cost will be, you can decide what you’d like to charge for one copy shipped to the US. In this example, I simply want to pass on Lulu’s costs to my customer, so I will put $4.94 in the “price” field.
6 – Rate Conditions
Next, we want the shipping price to increase if customers decide to add more copies to their cart. You can do this with rate conditions. Click on “add condition” below the rate name and price fields. The easiest way to do this is to base your shipping prices on the item weight. Remember that we have set all our Shopify products to weigh 1 lb. Therefore, in the minimum weight field, leave it as 0. In the maximum weight field, put 1 lb. This will ensure that whenever a customer has 1 book in their cart they will be charged $4.94 if they choose Mail shipping. You will repeat this step for all shipping options you would like to offer. In most cases, it is helpful to have at least one other shipping method besides Mail, such as Ground or Express. The process is the same for setting up those options.
PRO TIP – It can get tedious to add a shipping rate for every single instance. As an example, you can get so granular that you’re setting a rate up for 1 copy, 2 copies, 3 copies, and so on. One way to get around this is to group quantities together. For instance, set up a shipping rate for 1 copy, then a shipping rate for 2-5 copies (charging what Lulu would charge you for 5 copies). Then set up a rate for 6-10 copies, then 11-20, and so on.
7 – Setting Defaults
After you’ve set up all your customer facing shipping options in Shopify you will want to make sure those options are mapped correctly in the Lulu xPress App to ensure the correct shipping method comes to Lulu for us to ship your order. Navigate to the xPress app and click “more actions” and then “settings.” Scroll all the way to the bottom of this page and you’ll see the shipping options you’ve set up in Shopify. They will default to “automatic mapping,” however I recommend clicking into each option and mapping it directly to the Lulu shipping method you would like to use. For instance, with the Mail option we set up earlier, make sure each of the Mail option rates are mapped to the Lulu Mail option. This ensures any order that comes to Lulu with that chosen method will always come through with Mail.
8 – Final Review
Once you have each of your shipping methods created and mapped, let’s test to make sure everything is correct. Navigate to your store as a customer would and add a few books to the cart, change the shipping destination, etc. If possible, it would be ideal to mimic a customer and send a live test order through. Once you’ve done that, navigate to the xPress App and find the order. If the order has made it to our system as “unpaid” then you know it’s a success! If it arrives as “invalid,” you may have some troubleshooting to do. Go over these steps once more and ensure everything is connected properly.
If you need any assistance with these steps or would like to speak to a human, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.