How ShipHawk Works with Magento
There are two main types of Magento users; those who use Magento as a pseudo ERP, using it to fulfill orders within the platform; and those who use it exclusively as an eCommerce storefront, fulfilling orders elsewhere.
Both types of users need functionality to:
- Manage orders (orders in, shipments out)
- Book shipments (rate, route and label)
- Update customers with the status of their orders (track and trace)
- and to keep shipping costs as low as possible (cost optimization)
Regardless of the platform (Magento 1 or Magento 2), shipment pricing and management is critical to success in today’s hyper-competitive environment. Yet managing shipping and order fulfillment is one of the most ad hoc and difficult-to-optimize aspects of most operations.
Most components of the average Magento store are automated — from product search, and payment, to ERP data sync, and inventory notifications.
But when it comes to completing the shipping process, chances are several of the steps on every order require some manual attention and decision-making. For example:
- Finding the best carrier for each order — based on cost, service levels, customer expectations, and other relevant factors.
- Identifying and selecting the optimal packaging for each order — the right box and packing materials, whether to pack individually or palletize, etc. — based on cost, protecting the order in transit, regulatory compliance, carrier guidelines, etc.
- Deciding which shipping options to present to the customer at the point of purchase.
In other words, the ability to optimize shipping and order fulfillment through the Magento store — or through any other sales channel — will depend on at least three factors:
- The size and diversity of the shipper’s carrier network (as well as negotiated rates with these carriers)
- The ability to quickly review the details of each order against all potential carriers and packaging options — to select the best carrier and packing solution for the job
- The ability to track and analyze carriers’ performance data, to improve carrier-selection decisions and continually improve the customer experience
This is where ShipHawk can help.
How ShipHawk Works With Magento
ShipHawk integrates an automated shipping solution directly into the Magento platform — with little or no development work required. ShipHawk is the product. The Magento plugin is just a tool to provide access to the ShipHawk data and functionality. Some Magento customers leverage ShipHawk’s Magento plugins and some work directly with ShipHawk’s shipping APIs. Regardless of how the software and data are accessed, the ShipHawk solution solves the issues outlined above by:
- Automatically exposing a network of carriers — offering small parcel, freight, LTL, and white-glove services.
- Facilitating custom policies and shipping rules that instruct ShipHawk’s shipping optimization engine to identify the best carrier, specific service, packing option and other details based on the specifics of every order.
- Providing dynamic, real-time reporting and analytics that provide insight into carrier performance, true shipping costs, and other key data points.
- Simplifying order syncing for streamlined fulfillment.
- Automating booking through delivery, including full shipping documentation.
- Hosting post-purchase branded tracking pages and customer communications.
Whether a Magento 1 or Magento 2 storefront serves as a primary channel or simply as one of many sales channels (online and offline), deploying the ShipHawk Magento Extension enables a wide range of shipping automation services.