If you sell products which need to be shipped to your customer (as opposed to services or downloadable products), you can set up your shipping fees (also known as freight, carriage, postage and packing) to be either calculated depending on the size/weight of the product, or fixed per invoice.

Tip: If you allow free or discounted shipping for purchases over a certain value, or when other conditions are met (eg. for existing clients only or for a specified date range), you can set up this information on the discounts page, rather than here. This page is just for your normal undiscounted shipping fees.

To access your list of shipping fees, select Configuration­->Shipping from the nBill menu as shown in figure 3.6

Figure 3.6 - Accessing the Shipping List


This will bring up a list of the shipping rates that you have defined. Note the ID number shown on the right hand column. This number is assigned by nBill when the shipping rate record is saved, and uniquely identifies the shipping rate. This ID may be needed when you create order forms if you choose to handle shipping manually (see the Order Form Details Tab and the Order Form Order Tab topics). Click on a shipping rate to edit it, or on the 'New' toolbar button to create a new shipping rate. This takes you to the shipping editor.

Shipping Service

Enter the name of the shipping service, which will appear on invoices.

Code

Your own code for this shipping rate.  Used to sort the shipping rates alphabetically when they are presented in lists elsewhere in the application.

Country

The country in which this service applies. At the end of the list are the 2 special values: 'European Union' and 'Worldwide', to enable you to specify a single shipping rate for all applicable countries.

Price

If you charge a fixed price per invoice for shipping, enter the amount, and select 'yes' for the 'Fixed Price Shipping' field below. If the amount you charge depends on the size or weight of the product(s) ordered, enter the smallest common denominator here (which will be multiplied by a number stored against the product to calculate the total cost, and the result will again be multiplied by the quantity of items ordered - unless the number of units is set to a negative value - see explanation of fixed price shipping, below).

 For Example: If you charge $2.00 to deliver a widget, and $2.50 to deliver a large widget, you would set the net price per unit to 0.5, as this is the lowest common denominator between those two prices (or more accurately, the 'greatest common divisor' - that is, the largest number that can be multiplied by an integer [a whole number] to result in every shipping price you need).

Then in the product record for a widget, you would specify that it constitutes 4 shipping units, and in the product record for a large widget, you would specify that it constitutes 5 shipping units.  When the product is ordered, the number of units is multiplied by the price per unit, and again by the quantity of units ordered, to give the total cost of shipping (note, it is also possible to multiply by the price per unit but not the quantity - see fixed price shipping, below).

 Tip: In fact, you can store numbers with 2 decimal places in the shipping units field of a product, so the net price per unit does not have to be multiplied by an integer (but it is probably easier to work out if it is).

 Tip: If you just want to set the shipping price for each product individually, you can set the net price per unit to 1, and then enter the price you want as the number of units in the product record (because that value will then be multiplied by one to calculate the shipping cost, thus remaining the same).

Nominal Ledger Code

If you want to keep track of how much money comes in for shipping, you can create a nominal ledger code for it, and specify which one to use for this particular shipping rate here. If you are not using nominal ledger codes, just leave it set to miscellaneous.

Fixed Price Shipping?

If you charge a fixed price for shipping per invoice, specify the amount in the net price per unit field above, and set this to 'yes'. If you set this value to 'no', the shipping price will be calculated by multiplying the net price per unit by the number of units held against the product record, and the result is multiplied by the quantity of items ordered.

 Tip: In the product record, if you specify a negative value for the number of units, this will mean that the shipping will not be multiplied by the quantity of items ordered; but it will still be multiplied by the absolute value (ie. after removing the minus sign) of the number of units.

 For Example: If you want to sell widgets with a fixed price for shipping regardless of how many widgets are ordered, but you also want to charge for shipping separately on other items ordered at the same time, your shipping rate for widgets is not fixed price shipping (because there can be other shipping rates on the same invoice), so set this option to 'no', and enter a negative number for the number of shipping units in the product record (eg. -2 will multiply the net price per unit by 2, but will not multiply the result by the quantity of items ordered).

Is Shipping Taxable?

Indicate whether sales tax (VAT) is to be added to the cost of shipping or not.

Tax Rate If Different

If sales tax (VAT) is to be added to the cost of shipping, you can specify the tax rate to use here. If this is left at zero, the standard rate of tax will be used. So if you do not want tax to be added, don't just set this to zero - set the 'Is Shipping Taxable' option to 'no'.

Shipping Tracking URL

If the courier to which this record relates provides an online tracking service for parcels you send, you can enter the basic URL structure here. Typically, the actual tracking URL would require a reference of some sort to be included. As you will not know that until you actually send the item, and it will be different for each order, you put a placeholder in the URL where the reference needs to go. The placeholder is simply a double hash (##).

Then on the order record, you can enter the reference number assigned by the courier when you send the item, and the full URL will be generated by combining the two values. The full URL is then displayed on the My Orders page in the front end so the user can click from there to track their package.