One of these decisions is selecting the right shipping software.
Choosing the best shipping software can drastically improve the efficiency and accuracy of your shipping operations, save you time, and ultimately help you grow your business.
In this article, we’ll explore what shipping software is and provide you with a list of the 5 best shipping software options for a small business.
We’ve also made sure to include an extensive buyer’s guide, as well as a short FAQ to help answer anything else you might be wondering about.
What Is Shipping Software?
Shipping software is a tool that automates the shipping process.
Shipping software is designed to help businesses manage and set up their shipping operations so that the entire process runs smoothly and efficiently.
The software is often integrated with various carrier systems, allowing businesses to manage shipping orders, print labels, track their shipments, and handle anything to do with returns.
Small businesses often choose to go with shipping software because it can improve their efficiency, reduce errors that can cost them in the long run, increase customer satisfaction, and lower their overall costs.
With the right shipping software, small business owners can simplify the shipping process, streamlining their entire operations and focusing on their business growth and new creative ideas.
ShipStation is a popular shipping software for small-to-medium-sized businesses.
It is a web-based solution that helps businesses manage their shipping orders from one platform.
The software integrates with over 40 carriers, including USPS, FedEx, and UPS, making it easy for businesses to compare rates and choose the best shipping option for their customers.
One of the primary advantages of ShipStation is its user-friendly interface that enables businesses to streamline their shipping operations, saving time and money.
It also offers various features, such as automated order importing, customizable packing slips, and easy label printing, which simplify the entire shipping process.
More than this, the platform provides real-time tracking information, ensuring that customers receive their orders promptly.
Another significant advantage of ShipStation is its scalability.
It offers various pricing plans that cater to businesses of different sizes, allowing them to grow without worrying about outgrowing the system.
Furthermore, ShipStation’s integration with various marketplaces and carriers ensures that businesses can expand their sales channels and offer customers a range of shipping options.
- User-friendly interface: ShipStation has a simple and intuitive interface that allows businesses to manage their shipping processes with ease.
- Integration with major marketplaces and carriers: ShipStation integrates with popular marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, and Shopify, as well as major carriers like FedEx, UPS, and USPS, providing businesses with a range of shipping options.
- Real-time tracking: The platform provides real-time tracking information, ensuring that customers receive their orders promptly and can track them throughout the shipping process.
- Pricing: ShipStation’s pricing can be quite high for small businesses, and it may not be feasible for some to afford the platform.
Easyship is an all-in-one shipping platform that caters to businesses of all sizes.
It offers a range of features, including order management, label printing, and shipping rate comparisons.
One of the standout features of EasyShip is its automated label printing capabilities.
The software generates shipping labels automatically, saving businesses time and reducing the risk of errors in the process.
It also offers batch processing and split orders, allowing businesses to process multiple orders at once or split a single order into multiple shipments.
Easyship also provides access to discounted shipping rates from over 250+ courier services, such as DHL and FedEx, to help businesses save on shipping costs.
The platform includes a comprehensive dashboard that allows users to track their shipments in real time and manage their orders efficiently.
- Integrates with multiple e-commerce platforms: this includes commonly used platforms such as Shopify and WooCommerce.
- Shipping Rates/Discounts: access to discounted shipping rates from over 250+ courier services.
- Real-time shipment tracking: this allows you to accurately track shipments so you can plan ahead.
- Some users have reported issues with customer support
Shippo is a user-friendly shipping software that offers a range of features, including label printing, tracking, and order management.
It integrates with multiple e-commerce platforms, including Amazon, Etsy, and Shopify, and offers access to discounted shipping rates from USPS, FedEx, and UPS.
Shippo also offers a multi-carrier shipping API that allows businesses to connect with over 55+ carriers globally.
There is also an easy return system with Shippo, allowing you to create labels that will automate returns.
The platform also provides a real-time shipping rate calculator to help businesses save on shipping costs.
- Connect Channels: with Shippo, you can sync all of your sales platforms together and then manage them in a single place.
- Discounted Shipping Labels: this helps you to get the best rates from a variety of different carriers.
- Easy Returns: Shippo allows you to create return labels automatically, with no added cost!
- Pricing Plans: some of the higher pricing plans could be too expensive for small businesses.
If you’re looking for a platform that will do other things for you, not just shipping, then this might be a great choice for you.
Ordoro features some handy tools such as real inventory tracking, that allow you to unify your inventory across different warehouses, with fast write back to every one of your sales channels.
They offer seamless shipping, with discounted rates up to 89% with certain carriers.
They also offer a consolidated order system that allows you to connect all of your sales channels, and create automatic drop shipment routing.
This makes it a great choice if you have different sales channels and want to manage them all in one place.
Another thing we wanted to point out was that the customer support offered by Ordoro is by far one of the most impressive on this list.
They offer unlimited support that can help you throughout your journey with the platform.
- Inventory Tracking: allows you to unify your inventory across different warehouses.
- Order System: create automatic drop shipping routes.
- Customer Support: some of the best customer support in the industry.
- Trial Period: no free trial to test it out before you commit.
ShipBob is a shipping software designed for small to medium-sized businesses that sell on multiple channels, including e-commerce platforms, marketplaces and brick-and-mortar stores.
The platform offers a range of features, including inventory management, order tracking, and real-time analytics.
Another thing that want to highlight with ShipBob is their option to have personalized unboxing experiences.
This offers an incredible opportunity for businesses who want to create memorable experiences for their customers.
ShipBob also provides access to a network of fulfillment centers across the United States, allowing businesses to store their products closer to their customers and speed up their delivery times.
The platform also offers a customizable dashboard that allows users to manage their orders and shipments efficiently.
- Fulfillment Reports: offers fulfillment reporting that helps you to compare your brand experience to others.
- 3-Step Process: ShipBob offers a simple 2-step process that goes from connecting your store, to creating an inventory and then shipping to your customers.
- Personalized Unboxing Options:these allow you to create a customer-focused experience.
- Customer Service: some reports of poor customer service that could slow you down if you run into issues.
So that was our list of the 5 best shipping software for small businesses, but it’s not the end of the story.
Often, the right piece of software for your businesses depends on the specifics of your company.
In this section, we’re going to outline some of the most important factors to keep in mind when shopping around online for the best software for you.
Integration with E-commerce Platforms
One of the most important features to consider when choosing a shipping software is integration with your e-commerce platform.
Your shipping software should be able to seamlessly integrate with your online store to automatically import orders and customer data.
This will save you time and reduce the risk of errors when entering shipping information manually.
Popular e-commerce platforms such as Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento typically have integrations available with various shipping software providers.
Before choosing a shipping software, ensure that it is compatible with your e-commerce platform.
Another key feature to look for in a shipping software is multi-carrier support.
This means that the software should support multiple shipping carriers, such as USPS, FedEx, UPS, DHL, and others, so that you have access to a range of shipping options and discounted rates.
Additionally, multi-carrier support will help you avoid carrier-specific limitations and shipping delays.
Make sure to check that the shipping software supports the carriers that you typically use for your shipments.
Real-time tracking is a crucial feature that allows you to monitor the status of your shipments and provide updates to your customers.
This feature enables you to provide your customers with accurate and up-to-date information about their shipments, such as estimated delivery times and tracking numbers.
Real-time tracking can also help you identify issues with shipments before they become larger problems.
Make sure that the shipping software offers real-time tracking capabilities and that they are compatible with the carriers you use.
Automated Label Printing
Printing shipping labels can be a time-consuming task, particularly if you are shipping a large volume of orders.
Automated label printing is a feature that automates this process, generating labels in bulk with just a few clicks.
This saves you time and reduces the risk of errors. Make sure that the shipping software you choose offers automated label printing and is compatible with your preferred label printer.
Some shipping software offers inventory management features, allowing you to track your inventory levels and automate your reorder process.
This feature can help you avoid stockouts and ensure that you always have the products that you need in stock.
Inventory management features can also help you reduce storage costs and streamline your operations.
Make sure that the shipping software offers inventory management capabilities and that they are compatible with your e-commerce platform.
Order management is another critical feature that allows you to manage your orders, including tracking and editing them as necessary.
A good shipping software should allow you to view your orders in one centralized location and enable you to automate your shipping process, reducing the time and effort required to process orders.
Make sure that the shipping software offers order management capabilities that are compatible with your e-commerce platform.
Analytics and Reporting
Analytics and reporting tools can help you gain insights into your shipping performance and make informed decisions.
Look for a shipping software that provides analytics and reporting features, such as delivery time reports, shipping cost reports, and order volume reports.
These tools can help you identify areas for improvement and optimize your shipping operations.
Make sure that the shipping software you choose offers analytics and reporting capabilities that are easy to use and interpret.
Customer support is another essential factor to consider when choosing a shipping software.
Look for a provider that offers a range of support options, such as phone, email, or chat support, and has a reputation for providing excellent customer service.
Additionally, make sure that the shipping software provider offers training materials and resources to help you get started and troubleshoot any issues that may arise.
Personalized Unboxing Experiences
This is a smaller point, but one that you might want to consider if you truly value your customer’s experience.
Personalized unboxing experiences are a growing trend in e-commerce where businesses aim to make their packaging and unboxing process more memorable and engaging for customers.
This involves creating a unique and personalized unboxing experience that reflects the brand’s identity and values and makes the customer feel valued and appreciated.
This is an especially good choice for luxury brands.
In addition to the essential features listed above, some shipping software providers offer additional features that may be useful to your small business.
For example, some software may offer batch shipping, which allows you to process multiple orders at once, or split orders, which enables you to split a single order into multiple shipments.
Other features may include address verification, which can help reduce errors when entering shipping addresses, or custom branding options, which allow you to include your company logo or other branding elements on your shipping labels and packing slips.
Consider your specific business needs when evaluating these additional features and determine if they are necessary for your operations.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I Need A Shipping Software For My Small Business?
Shipping software can help small businesses streamline their shipping process, save time, reduce costs, and improve customer satisfaction. If you ship a significant volume of products, shipping software can be a valuable investment.
How Much Does Shipping Software Cost?
The cost of shipping software varies depending on the provider and the features offered.
Most shipping software providers offer pricing plans based on the number of shipments per month.
Can I Integrate My Shipping Software With My E-commerce Platform?
Yes, most shipping software providers offer integration with popular e-commerce platforms, such as Shopify, WooCommerce, and Amazon.
Can I Save On Shipping Costs With Shipping Software?
Yes, many shipping software providers offer access to discounted shipping rates from multiple carriers, allowing businesses to save on shipping costs.
What Should I Look For When Choosing A Shipping Software For My Small Business?
When choosing a shipping software, consider factors such as integration with e-commerce platforms, multi-carrier support, real-time tracking, automated label printing, inventory management, order management, analytics and reporting, and customer support.
Choosing the right shipping software can help small businesses streamline their shipping process, save time, reduce costs, and improve customer satisfaction.
ShipStation, Easyship, Shippo, Ordoro, and ShipBob are some of the best shipping software options for small businesses.
When selecting shipping software, it is important to consider factors such as integration with e-commerce platforms, multi-carrier support, real-time tracking, automated label printing, inventory management, order management, analytics and reporting, and customer support.
We hope that this guide has helped you to choose the right shipping software for your business and that you’re now more confident about what will work for you.
If you still have some questions, check out our short FAQ section below for some answers! We wish you the best of luck with your business!