Fee updates go into effect on May 1, 2015. Learn more

Shipping best practices

Boost your sales and shipping DSRs and lower your cost to ship with these best practices

Start now

Offer free shipping

Online buyers consider the total cost—item price and the cost of shipping—when deciding what and where to buy. Buyers especially love free shipping; many will only purchase items that ship for free. In fact, buyers are more likely to choose an item with free shipping over an item with a shipping charge, even if the total cost is the same. Free shipping can pay for itself in many ways.

When you offer free shipping, you get:

  • More buyers likely to choose your item.
  • Lower Final Value Fees when applied to the full amount of sale, including shipping.
  • A boost in search results for your Fixed Price listings.
  • Automatic 5-star rating for shipping cost when your buyer chooses free shipping

Offer expedited or express shipping

Buyers also like a choice. Now you can offer 4 domestic and 5 international shipping services in your listings. Garner the most sales and deliver really great customer service with FREE standard shipping as your first option and an express service for buyers in a hurry.

You won't pay a higher Final Value Fee if your buyer chooses 1-day (or international) because when you offer these services, your fees are calculated on the first shipping option you specify. So if you specified free shipping as your first option, you pay zero fees on shipping even if your buyer chooses express or international.

For example:

  • You offer free standard shipping as your first domestic shipping option and express shipping for $20.00 as your second option in your item listing.
  • Your buyer chooses and pays for the express shipping option for $20.00.
  • Even though your buyer chose the more expensive express option, your final value fees are calculated on your first domestic shipping option. In this case, your fee will be calculated on free shipping—you do not pay a fee on the $20.00 express shipping option your buyer selected.

Ship the same day the buyer pays

As a rule of thumb, ship the item the same day your buyer pays. You'll automatically receive a 5-star shipping time detailed seller rating (DSR) as long as:

  • You specified 1-day or shorter handling time.
  • You upload valid tracking information by the end of the next business day Pacific Time after the buyer's payment clears.
  • Tracking shows confirmed delivery 4 business days from when the payment clears—or within your estimated delivery time if it's less than 4 days (for example, overnight shipping).

Offer combined shipping discounts

The combined shipping discounts feature gives you a variety of ways to offer your buyers a discount on shipping when they purchase more than one item from you:

  • Charge for shipping the item with the highest shipping cost, and then add an additional lower cost for each additional item.
  • Subtract shipping costs for each additional item purchased.
  • Offer free shipping on additional items. Combine items into one shipment.
  • Make sure to upload tracking information to My eBay for every item you ship. You can do it for virtually any carrier. Your buyers receive tracking information via an automated email, and they can access it from My eBay.
  • When buyers are able to track the progress of their shipment, they tend to be more satisfied and leave higher DSRs. Plus, you spend less time answering one of the most common buyer questions: "Where's my stuff?"
  • Tracking information and Delivery Confirmation also protects you in the event of an eBay dispute and is one of the qualifications for getting an automatic 5-star rating for ship time.
  • If you pay for shipping and print shipping labels on PayPal, this information is uploaded automatically to my eBay. You can also upload it manually.
  • If you use third party services or bulk tools to list your items, uploading tracking information to eBay is easy. Most major third party label printing tools can be integrated with eBay to automate the process.

Ship worldwide

Take full advantage of eBay's online global marketplace by specifying that you'll sell and ship to buyers in other countries. Items offered internationally that specify shipping for US buyers get displayed in the main search results for buyers on eBay.com as well as eBay.ca.

  • You can specify different services for different countries—specify up to 5 international services.
  • Use PayPal label printing and you can also print pre-filled customs forms.
  • For your international shipments, your Final Value Fees work the same way as for express shipping. When you offer international shipping, you pay Final Value Fees on the first domestic shipping option you specify, even when your buyer chooses international.
  • For Canadian sellers, for example:
    • You offer free standard shipping as your first domestic shipping option and Expedited Parcel USA for $12.85 as your first international option in your item listing.
    • A buyer chooses and pays for the Expedited Parcel USA option for $12.85.
    • Even though your buyer chose the more expensive international option, your Final Value Fees are calculated on your first domestic shipping option. In this case, your fee will be calculated on free shipping—you do not pay a fee on the $12.85 international shipping option your buyer selected.
  • Note that if you opt to list on eBay.com, your final values fees will still be based on the first "domestic" shipping service you add to the listing. But on eBay.com, "domestic" means USA. Here's another example:
    • You list on eBay.com, offering free standard shipping to US buyers in the "domestic" section. You add an "international" service offering $12.85 Standard Int'l Shipping to Canada.
    • A buyer chooses and pays for "International" shipping.
    • Even though your Canadian buyer chose a more expensive shipping service, your Final Value Fees would be based on your first "domestic" shipping service. And since you listed on eBay.com, "domestic" means USA. In this case, your Final Value Fee for the shipping paid by your Canadian buyer is based on the free shipping you were offering to US buyers.
  • Pay for and print shipping labels on eBay.

    From your sold items in My eBay, you can conveniently pay for and print discounted Canada Post shipping labels on PayPal.



Extra shipping tips and resources

FAQs

Read answers to frequently asked questions about PayPal labels.

Save on shipping

Get special eBay discounts from Canada Post and FedEx.

Follow shipping best practices

Boost your sales and ratings, and lower your costs.

PayPal labels

From your PayPal account you can pay for discounted postage, print shipping labels, and upload tracking to eBay automatically.

Get automatic 5-star ratings for shipping

Boost your shipping DSRs and lower your shipping costs with these best practices.

Like us on Facebook

Connect with other eBay sellers.

Try the Shipping Calculator

Estimate shipping costs with ease.