Nov 13, 2013
DotcomWeavers

Ecommerce Websites – Shipping Integration

With technology becoming ever the more expansive, companies are implementing new capabilities to ensure consumer satisfaction. One of the many ways in which to successfully integrate an enterprise application is through shipping APIs. With our companies, we specifically use direct API for UPS to create labels, Endicia for USPS and direct APIs when we utilize FedEx. We are also able to generate labels in both PDF and JPG formats and then deliver them to the various printers for our clients.

What is the Shipping API?

Known as the Shipping Application Programming Interface (API), this specific application that we use via UPS, it fully integrates shipping directly into the websites that we create. The application allows consumers to enjoy the depth of the services that UPS provides as well as the capabilities. By using the Shipping API from UPS to generate labels, it creates greater efficiency within our websites and ensures we meet the needs of the consumer as well. Shipping APIs such as the ones that UPS provides also create lower overall costs and allow for better mailroom implementation and control over activities with regard to shipping. The Shipping API also makes sure that anything that any company that ships out a product that the shipping information is streamlined without any added expense or hardware attached.

UPS Integration

By using the UPS Shipping API, it provides our company websites with the latest XML technology and access to several services within the UPS platform. The API was selected for its ideal aspects and capability of providing essential networking shipping activities within a variety of dealers, branch offices and retail locations that need it. The platform also allows for a dynamic solution for college and university environments and large companies and corporations that require multiple shipments and shipments of massive amounts. We understood when implementing the Shipping API via UPS that it required XML/Web Services programming technology that had to be integrated and coded properly. We knew however that by instituting it within websites that we make that it would provide better flexibility in terms of shipping functionality within the e-commerce websites. The UPS Shipping API has a tracking tool, a signature tracking component, a UPS Address Validation Tool, that allows for checking to see if addresses that have been entered do not have mistakes or typos; the UPS file download for Quantum View feature which allows for images of signatures and other documentation to be downloaded for view; the UPS Time in Transit Tool, which allows for a search of what services are best for certain shipping areas and the UPS TradeAbility, which provides information on cost estimates associated with duties, taxes and transportation.

FedEx Integration

With FedEx, they also utilize Shipping API technology. With our websites, we provided that service via our shipping applications, thus providing for a competitive advantage in terms of global transportation. It allows for a reliable and fast delivery of product via the FedEx platform and ensures that consumers have a money back guarantee should an issue arise. FedEx’s Shipping API seamlessly integrates several different applications including customer service, order entry, reverse logistics systems and outbound shipping benefits, which allows for shipping labels to be created, for shipments of all sizes to be prepared in advance, for estimated shipping costs to be given on the spot to the consumer, for the consumer to be able to access the shipment information online and for tracking data to be imported into our systems so if a problem should occur, the data is available for inquiry. FedEx makes it easy to incorporate a functional and easy to use application interface for both businesses and consumers. This ensures that there is enhanced efficiency in the website’s ability to provide the best shipping rates, transit time estimates and shipment statuses. The FedEx API allows for an optimization of shipping processes by integrating the Ship Manager Server into the company’s database. This allows for essential data to be examined for effectiveness and ensures that consumers are provided an exceptional experience regarding shipping. The Ship Manager delivers on scalable technology through the function specific modules and features that meet the shipping needs of customers. It is also self-contained as far as preventing continual communications with the FedEX system. The manager is also customizable as it is a transaction based application that essentially allows for the customer to develop a specific interface that meets their precise needs.

USPS Integration

When we ship via USPS, we use Endicia, which provides a wide ranging amount of solutions that are easy to use and save time and money. The services that they offer allow for a streamlining of the shipping process. From batch printing shipping labels to custom form printing for inventory that we ship to customers via USPS, Endicia was selected because it was proven to be reliable.

Customers and Shipping

Customers frequently look for many different items when shopping online, but one of the most important ones that they look for is how a company handles the shipping. Ecommerce shipping solutions are the prime aspects that consumers look for. Consumers want shipping options that show their charges and taxes, thereby providing them with an understanding of the shipping rates and the various elements associated with purchasing items online. Consumers also want to know that shipping rates are kept simple. Consumers do not want to feel as though they are being overcharged, when they can pay less elsewhere. Some companies even consider free shipping as a promotional item to ensure that consumers are satisfied with their shipping applications.

It is important that companies clearly explain the policies with respect to their shipping. Putting everything on the product page ensures that consumers are able to effectively process their order effectively and efficiently, while also making sure that the applications are running as smooth as possible. Shipping methods and delivery dates must be properly explained to the consumer on the consumer page. It is the mission of all companies that these details are outlined properly and are clearly explained. Consumers need to feel that their expectations are exceeded when using our websites. We strive to process orders as early as we can and notify consumers via the shipping APIs if and when there are issues.

Posted in: eCommerce Applications

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