The first thing to understand with Shiptheory is what it actually does. Shiptheory's main functionality is that it sits between both your Sales Channels (Amazon, eBay, Magento, etc.) and your Carrier accounts (Royal Mail, DPD, FedEx, etc.). It will receive orders from your Sales Channels and can then book them in with your carriers, producing a shipping label, and updating any tracking codes.
For an outline of how Shiptheory connects with your other platforms, please see the diagram below:
The entire process can be broken down into a few steps:
- Shiptheory receives a shipment/order from your Sales Channel
- The shipment is then booked in with one of your Carrier accounts
- Shiptheory then receives the shipping label for this shipment/order, as well as any tracking information
- The label can be printed out for that order
- The order within your Sales Channel is then updated with its relevant tracking code
You're able to jump to a specific section of this guide by clicking the links just below:
- Connecting your Sales Channels
- Connecting your Carrier Accounts
- Booking in your orders and creating shipping labels
- Printing your shipping labels
- Extra Features
Connecting your Sales Channels:
After creating an account with Shiptheory, the next thing you'll want to do is connect up your Sales Channels. This will be where your orders come from into Shiptheory.
Within your Shiptheory account, you're able to view all the Sales Channels we can connect with from the Manage Channels page. From this same page, you can then enable the one you'd like to connect to Shiptheory.
Once selected, it'll ask for details specific to your account with that Channel. For help with connecting these up with your Shiptheory account, you can find view our help guides on it, or get in touch with our Support Team.
All Sales Channels will have a specific point when orders are sent through into Shiptheory, every channel is different. Within the settings for some Sales Channel, you are able to customize and choose exactly when you'd like orders to come through.
Connecting your Carrier accounts:
To book your orders in and produce a shipping label, you'll need to connect up your carrier account with Shiptheory. You're able to choose the carrier you'd like to connect with Shiptheory from the Manage Carriers page within your Shiptheory account.
To connect a carrier, you'll need to enter a few specific details from your account with them. In some cases, you may not have these details to hand. In those situations, the best thing to do is to contact your account manager who will be able to retrieve these for you.
Booking in your orders and creating shipping labels:
When using Shiptheory, there are two main ways in which you can book in your orders, either manually or automatically.
Manually Creating shipping labels:
To manually book an order in through Shiptheory, you can find the order on your Shiptheory Dashboard. You'll then want to select it and choose View. This will open a new pop-up window where you are able to view/edit information on the order, as well as book it in with your carrier.
To book the order in on this page, you first choose the Carrier and Service you'd like it to go with. You can then pick and enhancements that may be available to that service.
Once you are happy with your selection, choose Create Label. This will book it with your carrier and then create a shipping label. You'll then be given the option to print out this label.
Automatically Creating shipping labels:
Shiptheory is able to automatically book in your orders for you as soon as they arrive into your Shiptheory account. To do this, you will need to create a set of Shipping Rules. These are criteria of which all your orders will be checked against when trying to automatically book them in with your carriers.
Below is an example of a simple ruleset. These rules will book an order in with Parcel Next day if it is going to the UK, but if it has a Shipping Method of 'Fast Shipping' it will be a Next Day service by 10:30. If an order is heading to the USA and has a value of less than 50, it will be put on the Air Classic service.
When creating Shipping Rules, you can use a plethora of information that is on each order within Shiptheory. This includes, but is not limited to, Country, Postcode, Value, Weight, Product SKU, Product Count, Day of the Week, Time.
After you have created a set of Shipping Rules, each time an order comes through to Shiptheory, your order will begin to match with them and then be booked in automatically. For our full guide on Shipping Rules, please click here.
Printing your shipping labels:
Similar to Shipping Rules, there are multiple ways in which you can have your labels print out through Shiptheory. The 3 main ways this can be done is manually, automatically, or through barcode scanning.
After an order has been successfully booked in with your carrier, you will have the option to print out the label.
To find orders that have been booked in but not yet printed out, you can navigate to the Ready To Print tab on your Dashboard. From here select the order you want and choose Print. This will download a PDF of the label which you can then print out.
To print automatically with Shiptheory, you'll need to download and install the Shiptheory Print Client. You will want to do this on the computer that is connected to the printer. This allows Shiptheory to connect directly with your printers, skipping the need to download a PDF of your labels.
You can follow the below guides on how to download and install the Shiptheory Print Client:
Install on Windows
Once installed, it will run in the background of that computer, serving as a connection between your Shiptheory account and your printers. You'll then want to configure your automatic printing settings.
On this page, you can choose which printer your labels print out of. The setting below sets it so that all DPD orders will automatically be printed out of the TSC printer selected.
Barcode scanning is useful if you'd like your orders to be automatically booked in but you then can control exactly when you'd like them printed out. To do this, you'll need to have your Shipping Rules setup without automatic printing.
Each time you scan a barcode, the relevant label for that order will then fire out of your printer automatically. A more detailed look into barcode scanning in Shiptheory can be found on our barcode scanning guide.
As well as the ability for Shiptheory to receive and book in your orders with carriers, it can also perform a few extra tasks too. It has the ability to produce a pick/pack list along with your shipping label, this is called an Integrated Label. Shiptheory is also able to produce all your customs documentation required when shipping internationally.
This feature allows Shiptheory to create one print out that includes both your shipping label and a custom packing slip of your own design. Using Shiptheory's Integrated Label Designer you're able to design and create a template that will be applied to all orders you book through Shiptheory.
On this template, you can add items such as the Shipping Label, Product Table, custom image, order details, receiver details, sender details, and custom text. For a full explanation of what details you can add to the template, and how to design it, you can read our Integrated Labels setup guide.
When shipping internationally, Shiptheory is able to produce both your Commercial invoices and CN22/CN23's. When an order comes through to Shiptheory, if the customs documents are needed for it, they will be applied and created.
If you're using a carrier that supports paperless trade when shipping internationally, Shiptheory will be able to send the relevant shipment data to your carrier, preventing the need for you to print out any extra documents for customs.
For more on how this works within Shiptheory, you can read our guide on Customs Documentation in Shiptheory.
Have any questions about using Shiptheory? One of our Support Team would be happy to give you a hand!