HOW TO: Offer Multiple Shipping Options on

21 Dec

UPDATE:  5/4/2012… Apparently this no longer works.  I will keep this post up on the blog but it has been reported to me that this method no longer works as Etsy has rolled out and is continually rolling out new seller/checkout/shipping features…This was from way back when, in the very early days of Etsy…. I guess I’ll keep it here for historical reference…

UPDATE: 1/27/2011…  Not sure that this works with the newer Etsy checkout… Anyone want to try it?  Report your results in the comments section please!  Merci!

(UPDATED with international info…It’s at the end of the post)

Here is how I am offering multiple shipping options without the whole “convo me” and paypal invoice thing…

I read the article in the storque about setting up paypal so that transaction shipping info would be taken from the etsy transaction and brought to paypal…

I thought, “hey ,why can’t I do the reverse to use paypal’s shipping features when the customers are in the paypal portion of checking out”…

So…Here’s how I did it.
I went into paypal and clicked profile(under “my account”)

Under “selling preferences” I clicked “shipping calculations”

Here you can add methods…Each method gets a line, so you can customize what is charged.

For example, for my goods, and in my Etsy shop I have the base shipping (on domestic US) as:
$2.75 ($0.50 if shipped with another item)…
So for each entry in my standard shipping profile in PayPal I would put items 1-1 $2.75, 2-2 $3.25, 3-3 $3.75 4-4 $4.25 and 5+ $4.75….

Then I can also add a profile for Overnight and 2 day…

But for those it’s flat rate regardless of quantity (you can also do all of this by weight or dollar amount, but you need to stay consistent with your etsy listings, so doing it by quantity makes sense for most sellers…

Remember, your etsy listing is your agreement with your customer, you cannot go charging some bizarro number in paypal shipping….

To handle this I have explained in my listings what the listed shipping price is for (usps first class) and that other options are available when completing their payment in paypal…I also list those methods and their charges in my listing so nobody is confused and thinks everything ships fedex upgraded for free….

My etsy shipping charge does equal the “standard” shipping charge in my paypal profile.

Now, when setting this up, there is an important box in each little shipping method/profile that you set up…

It says:
Use the shipping fee in the transaction instead of my calculator’s settings:

If you click this, it will use the amount you specified in Etsy.  If you leave it blank, your customer should be able to choose their shipping method (if you have multiple methods…if you only have one method, and do not want to offer speedier shipping then you probably should just disregard this post as you don’t need to do this…

( Here’s the article that got me moving in this direction: )

I do think it is important to explain to the customer what your listed shipping is for and that they have choices once they are in paypal…

Also, if you are shipping fedex, you will need your customer’s phone number for the airbill… I chose “optional” for the phone number request in “Website Payment Preferences” under paypal/profile for the time being…

I really hope this helps someone!

I wish I had figured this out sooner!

I do have to update my listings (take out the date specific/holiday stuff) but I think it gives a good picture of how I am managing this idea for my own shop….You can see it here:




NOTE:  This is for domestic US shipping.  I believe the international shipping could be tweaked the same way but the parameters of shipping various goods to international destination is quite varied.  The method outlined here is how I am doing it. Your Mileage May Vary.  No guarantees, warrantees implied.  Not responsible if problems occur. Etc… Basically: here’s what I did, you can try it to, if you want to, but if it doesn’t work for you then I am not responsible.  Everyone has very different needs, requirements, goods which may make this method ineffective or impractical… I may have skipped steps. I tried not to, but things happen….   I will answer questions if I can, but I am swamped.  The best teacher is experience…It’s worth investigating all of the details before commiting to anything…  (and I am not tech support…I am a silversmith…) Sorry if this sounds harsh…. Hugs! Peace! Love all around!

INTERNATIONAL: For international orders I have two shipping profiles in Etsy, one for goods that are priced above $50 and one for those that are below $50,  due to importation requirements for most countries… So in this case, I chose to use the information from the transaction to override shipping options in paypal.  PayPal allows different options for domestic and international- including which info is used… hope this helps…

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MULTIPLE SHOPS:  I have not tried this for multiple shops… If you try it and have success(or failure, as long as we can learn from it) with multiple shops let me know and I’ll post an update here , or blog about it and I’ll post the link… I cannot even wrap my head around the basic logistics of two shops right now, so in the interest of my sanity and accurate information, I’m taking  hands off approach to that one…

35 Responses to “HOW TO: Offer Multiple Shipping Options on”

  1. Annie Howes at 11:01 am #

    Great information! Thank you for sharing :O)

  2. Kelly at 12:06 pm #

    Very helpful!! I am going to bookmark this blog posting to try it out!! Thanks so much, Kelly

  3. Hiromi/soap at 12:59 pm #

    You ARE clever! Now, why didn’t I think of this earlier? xoxoxoxo

  4. LittleLovables at 1:23 pm #


  5. Bianca at 4:39 pm #

    Great post, thanks!

  6. julie at 5:12 pm #

    OMG! this is brilliant… thanks so much for sharing this superb little nugget of info!

  7. Sarah at 6:03 pm #

    THANK YOU! Very clever indeed.

  8. daniellexo at 10:47 am #

    You ROCK!

  9. giftsbygiggle at 6:43 pm #

    Excellent info, may I link this to my blog?

  10. Joey & Aleethea at 10:55 am #

    Awesome post! Love your disclaimer too. Super clever. :)

  11. elizabeth scott at 12:39 pm #

    i’ve been using this in my shop & it works great!

  12. Sacheen at 12:48 pm #

    Just wanted to say thank you for taking the time to share. You rock!

  13. jfoleydesigns at 2:28 pm #

    GREAT!!! Thanks for taking the leg work out of my next ETSY shop tweak!!!!

  14. crazy4wind at 3:45 pm #

    Awesome! I am a new esty seller, so thanks for the great tip!

  15. rkdsign88 at 6:46 pm #

    Thank you for sharing your smart shipping idea :)

  16. TimelessInspirations at 7:11 pm #

    This is fantastic…I never you could do this! Thanks so much for sharing!

  17. Christine Crawford at 9:26 pm #

    Brilliant! Thanks for taking time to clue us in to this…

  18. jdmhub at 11:35 pm #

    I was unaware of this site. I was looking eBay for my moleskine notebook wraps. Great site. Thanks.

  19. Lovelyart at 4:17 pm #

    I don’t undersand it, I can go to the page but I think it is not the same. In my page you can put the shipping by total of purchase or by ranges of prices.

    I would like to know how to put the (not marked) box with optional insurance (2 dollars insurance for example). And then the buyer can mark it or not. Then if it’s marked you send the item with insurance (tracking number) or if it’s not marked you send it ordinary. And it costs the price of the shipping+ the insurance. Like in some purchases that I’ve done in ebay.

    Is it possible to do?

  20. Bek at 4:44 pm #

    Hi Lovelyart,

    If you go into “shipping calculations” in paypal, you can add different types of shipping. You can charge based on weight, dollar value, or quantity of items. Quantity of items is what can easily match up to what you specify in paypal. I have provided an example in this post on what the quantity based detail looks like (for me, your may look different).

    I do not think you can add a la carte shipping add-ons on paypal (such as insurance or delivery confirmation…I’m 99% sure that if you see those in ebay they are part of the ebay side of the transaction, and not handled as separate choices in paypal). Personally, I provide delivery confirmation on all orders and the cost is figured into my shipping rates. As I print postage using paypal or endicia, there is a discount on it and I believe it is $0.18/package for delivery confirmation. My items above $50 have insurance calculated into the pricing, not shipping. This is the best way for me to handle delivery confirmation and insurance.

    You need to figure out how to make the paypal shipping thing work for you, as your needs are different from my needs.

    If you need help with the paypal side of things I suggest contacting paypal (ie why you do not seem to be able to access certain options), this is merely an explanation of how I integrated paypal shipping options into my transactions…

    Best wishes,

  21. Bek at 4:46 pm #

    You are very welcome! Thanks for stopping by and enjoy! It is a wonderful place!

    “I was unaware of this site. I was looking eBay for my moleskine notebook wraps. Great site. Thanks.
    by jdmhub December 26, 2008 at 11:35 pm”

  22. The Pretty Peacock at 12:14 am #

    This is excellent – thank you, thank you!!! :)

  23. Jenn at 7:58 pm #

    Great tips! I’m gonna have to try this out! Thanks!

  24. Brookhousepottery at 9:15 am #

    Thanks for the great information. I will have to give it a try.

  25. Yori Kress Jewelry at 1:33 pm #

    Thank you so much for being so generous with your info sharing!

  26. Alison Du Bois at 10:42 am #

    Thanks so much for sharing this great information – can’t wait to try it!

  27. jason kenny at 3:38 pm #

    Just like you, I go forever with out reading RSS. My view is, if it’s important at all, It will hit my twitter stream.

  28. sumaiya at 6:01 pm #

    Very clever, clevergirl!

    I enjoyed saying that! lol!

  29. jill at 5:53 pm #

    is paypal what we have to use to receive payment on etsy? if so, are there options within paypal for the best rate on items sold?

  30. hmm… attractive..

  31. Boutique Lucky Stars at 1:27 pm #

    Great information! Thank you for putting this together…I’m all about ease!

  32. amy at 11:18 am #

    This is an awesome walk through, Thanks Bek! One question — I really want to offer upgraded shipping especially as we creep closer to Christmas, and I’ve been examining your shop to see how you word things — how do you send $25 Fedex overnight? Do you send in the FedEx envelopes (ie: do they fit)? Is that with the Etsy discount? I can’t seem to get anything under $35 bucks when I’m playing with the rate checker.

    Thanks again! You are a peach!

    • amy at 12:31 pm #

      I think I figured this out, nevermind! And thanks again!

  33. shared proxies at 7:40 pm #

    This web web-site is really a walk-through for all of the information you wanted about this and didn’t know who to ask. Glimpse here, and you’ll absolutely discover it.

  34. onocreative at 10:06 pm #

    I tried it on my client’s etsy today and it did not work…. :(

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