Offer the Royal Mail shipping methods with the real-time calculated shipping rates to your customers using the free WooCommerce plugin. In this article, I’ll show you how to configure the Royal Mail shipping method in your WooCommerce store.
You’re probably now wondering how a WooCommerce plugin can calculate shipping costs for Royal Mail. Most live rates plugins calculate the cost of shipping based on the API provided by the carriers. In the case of Royal Mail, the situation is slightly different. They don’t provide API for shipping calculations. Instead, they have price lists on which the entire shipping cost calculation is based. You can check the current postal prices on the official Royal Mail page.
Regardless of how the shipping cost is acquired, the effect is the same – your customers will get shipping cost based on their shopping cart. That kind of solution is crucial when it comes to ecommerce. Many customers favor shipping method based on the cost. That’s why getting the right shipping cost in WooCommerce can be vital when it comes to the difference between an abandoned cart and a successful conversion.
Royal Mail or Royal Mail Group plc is a British multinational postal service and courier company. The company provides mail collection and delivery services throughout the UK. Letters and parcels are deposited in post or parcel boxes, or are collected in bulk from businesses and transported to Royal Mail sorting offices. Royal Mail owns and maintains the UK’s distinctive red pillar boxes. For most of its history, the Royal Mail was a public service, operating as a government department or public corporation.
As of 2019, Royal Mail employed around 162,000 permanent postal workers, making it one of the largest shipment providers in the UK. It is certainly one of the obvious choices when it comes to shipping in the UK.
Shipping Live Rates for Royal Mail for WooCommerce is a new WooCommerce plugin from Octolize. It’s completely free, and it allows you to display automatically calculated Royal Mail shipping cost for each order. You can download it now from the official WordPress repository. Download it and install it in your store if you want to go next in this tutorial.
As this plugin does not take shipping costs from the API, you do not need to configure it additionally. Having the free Royal Mail WooCommerce plugin in your store installed and activated, you can just add the Royal Mail shipping method.
To create a new Royal Mail shipping method, go to WooCommerce → Settings → Shipping. Then, select the shipping zone you want to use. Probably, it will be a zone containing United Kingdom in it. Remember that it can be a separate zone for UK or any zone containing it.
Once you are in your Shipping Zone, click on the Add shipping method button. You’ll find it at the bottom of the shipping methods table:
In the window that will appear, choose the Royal Mail Live Rates from the dropdown list and confirm with Add shipping method button:
Having the shipping method added, you can configure it.
In the Method Title field, configure the shipping method name that will be displayed to your customers. You can also use the Fallback. It’s the flat rate shipping cost if the plugin returns no rates. If you want to increase conversion rate in your store, you should think about adding Free Shipping over the amount threshold. When you tick the Enable the free shipping over amount checkbox, you will be able to enter the free shipping threshold.
If you intend to limit the Royal Mail services in your WooCommerce store, you can check the Enable the services’ custom settings option. This way, you’ll see all the shipping services available in the plugin:
They are disabled as default, but you can enable them or change their display order. Please mind that the availability of services in the Services Table depends on the Zone regions selected on the shipping zone configuration screen, which the Royal Mail Live Rates shipping method was added within. Royal Mail Live Rates plugin supports both – domestic and international services.
Another very important part of the configuration are Package Settings. You have to define the package details, including its dimensions and weight, which will be used as default for this shipping method.
Last options to configure are the Rates Adjustments. You can include the insurance in the Royal Mail shipping rates and remove the tax to strip the 20% tax value from the shipping rates coming from Royal Mail.
If you need more advanced shipping options for Royal Mail shipping, you can use the PRO version of the plugin. It will be available soon. You can sign up now for the plugin and get 20% discount when it’s released! Just use the form in the plugin page:
Main features of the PRO plugin: