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Shipway is perhaps one of the lesser-known shipment tracking plugins, but it punches well above its weight class. The plugin comes with a host of features to reduce where is my order (WISMO) calls. Some of its highlights include real-time shipment tracking, customer notifications via email, SMS, and Whatsapp, and a dedicated order tracking page on your website.
Shipway: The Good and the Bad
Shipway does an excellent job of letting your customers keep an eye on their packages. But as with every product, there are also some downsides.
Incredibly easy to get started: You don’t need to be a software expert to use Shipway. You can download the plugin directly from your WordPress plugin repository or WooCommerce dashboard. Additionally, activating the plugin is as simple as going to your plugins page and uploading it, then installng the plugin with one click and activating it.
Getting started will look much the same with most major CMS platforms. Configuring Shipway is equally simple. Everything is very intuitive. Start by choosing a shipping provider from a drop-down menu and then add the tracking number. You may also add a shipping date if you wish to let the customer know when the package was shipped.
Finally, a handy preview link enables you to see the order information from the customer’s POV.
Many integrations: If you’re sold on using Shipway to track orders, it likely won’t matter which ecommerce platform you use. Shipway integrates with more than 50 of the best-known ecommerce platforms. The list of integrations includes WooCommerce, Magento, Shopify, Zoho, eBay, and BigCommerce.
Shipway also offers one-click integrations and frictionless onboarding for all its supported sales channels. You can expect to go live in only a few minutes of signing up with Shipway.
Choice of 600+ carriers: Shipway supports an impressive number of carriers. You get your pick of more than 600 carriers globally, including FedEx, Aramex, Ecom Express, Ups, India Post, Bombino Express, Canada Post, TNT, and Royal Mail.
The platform also lets you use carriers not available on the Shipway list. You will need to contact support to integrate your preferred carrier. The integration process for unsupported carriers takes about 10 to 12 days.
Branded order tracking: You no longer have to send your customers to the UPS tracking page populated with its logos, branding, promotions, and links. You can enjoy some of the same brand recall value as the big courier services. Shipway lets your customers track orders from your website, complete with your logo, URL, and theme.
Shipway also lets you send customized emails along with your branded tracking page URL. Here, you can recommend products, give discount coupon codes in the email, and provide sales offer details, just like the big retailers.
SMS notifications: Sending order tracking details via email is standard. But, there is no guarantee that your customers will open the email. Some people don’t check their email that often. Others have inboxes full of unread messages. In other cases, even legitimate emails sometimes end up in the spam folder.
Shipway lets your customers opt-in to receiving their order tracking details via SMS. This means you can instantly get information to your customers where they are most likely to see it. You can also send order tracking information via WhatsApp, which is a bonus.
Interface needs updating: Shipway is easy to use, but the interface is a little outdated. Frankly, some might even think it dull. On the plus side, the bare-bones interface also means everything is easy to locate and navigate. From this perspective, the minimalist and basic approach makes sense.
Restrictive payment options: Shipway only accepts PayPal payments. Most ecommerce stores use PayPal anyway. But you’ll be disappointed if you hope to pay with your credit card or any alternative payment.
No knowledge base: Shipway is easy and intuitive to use for the most part. But it would be nice to have a dedicated knowledge base. The learning curve may be unnecessarily steep for some users without the knowledge base. You only get an FAQ page covering some of the more general common issues.
On the plus side, customer support is quick and responsive. The team is also very knowledgeable and friendly.
Missing mobile app: While not mandatory, a mobile app would be great. Shipway is a web-based service. You’ll be able to access it from your mobile browser. But a dedicated app would have been excellent. You could quickly launch the app to track shipments and notifications on the go.
Mobile apps are also generally more user-friendly than browser-based platforms. We can only hope Shipway will look into this omission. Stand-alone mobile apps are almost standard now with these kinds of services.
Shipway’s pricing is very flexible and guarantees that you only pay for what you use. Before we get to the paid plan details, the free trial plan is worth checking out.
Free 7-day Trial
Shipway offers a free trial with 500 shipments for seven days. Simply signup for your Shipway account, and you’ll find your free 500 credits already loaded.
Signing up for the free trial is also hastle-free. You don’t have to provide your credit card information. You simply need an email, username, store URL, and mobile number, and you’re good to go. This free trial also gives you access to all Shipway features, which is a great way to try out the service before you pay.
If you choose to go with the premium plan, you still get your free 500 credits waiting for you. One credit is equal to one shipment. So, you can track your first 500 orders for free, before you spend a single cent. You’ll need to hurry, though, because the free credits expire in seven days (same length as the free trial).
You’ll need to estimate the number of shipments you plan to process in a month for the paid plan. You can choose between 100 and 10,000 shipments per month, and Shipway will give you your price. Shipway’s pricing varies in 500 shipment increments. So if you average 800 orders in a month, you’ll need to choose 1000 orders.
You can also choose to pay monthly, quarterly, bi-annually, or annually. You get a small discount for each of the payment options. For example, you get 5% off if you pay every three months, 10% off if you choose the six-month payment, or 20% off if you go with the annual billing.
You’ll have to pay for the SMS/Whatsapp credits separately, ranging from $30 to $90.
The payment structure is satisfactory for this kind of service. Many competitors have tiered plans where you pay extra to unlock more advanced features. Plus I love that you get all the features included regardless of how many shipments you pay for per month.
Overall, you’ll be getting a terrific deal here, as you’ll see in the next section. The only complaint I have about Shipway’s pricing is the platform only accepts PayPal payments. If you prefer to paying with a credit card, you may have to look for another service.
Let’s take a look at Shipways’ features and offerings and how they stack up.
Shipway Real-Time Delivery Updates
Where is my order (WISMO) calls can take up a lot of unnecessary support resources. Shipway can help you eliminate this problem almost entirely and free up your customer support team to work on other vital functions. Your clients can track their shipment in real-time with email, Whatsapp, and SMS delivery alerts.
These alerts include Shipment Booked, In-Transit, Out for Delivery, and Delivered. Additionally, you’ll be able to send out delivery issues notifications for undelivered shipments, including:
- Attempted delivery
- Delay in delivery
- Address incorrect
- Out of delivery area
- COD payment not ready
- Consignee unavailable
Additionally, your clients get a dedicated tracking URL for their shipments. This feature works quite well for the most part. But, sometimes, there is a bit of lag when updating the shipping progress. This can sometimes lead to confusion on your or the client’s side. Still, the real-time delivery updates feature works well enough that it will make a tremendous difference in your WISMO calls.
Shipway Custom Branded Tracking Page
Your customers don’t even need to know that you use Shipway to track orders. Customers are redirected to your website’s dedicated tracking page when they click their tracking URL. Here, you have full reign to customize the experience, including using your logo and branding and applying custom headers and footers.
Shipway also lets you embed video and add banners, social icons, and your Instagram gallery to the tracking page. You can also provide multiple languages and regional carriers on your tracking page. It is tough to fault this feature from a branding perspective.
Shipway Customer Reviews
Customer reviews are great for boosting your brand’s trust and reputation and helping your customers make quick purchase decisions. Shipway didn’t necessarily need to include this feature, but it’s a good one nonetheless. You can ask customers to review your product at a predetermined time after delivery. This way, you can keep your finger on the pulse of how your customers perceive your business.
The feature is very hands-off and easy to use. Shipway has a widget integrated into the delivery emails. Customers can click a link where they’ll be redirected to share their feedback. The feedback includes product quality, packaging quality, and order delivery time. You’ll also be able to archive outdated or unwanted reviews.
Additionally, Shipway lets you track your customer satisfaction scores monthly, weekly, or yearly. You can do this using the Net Promoter Score (NPS) tool. It’s a surprisingly advanced tracking feature. You’ll appreciate it when attempting to judge how customers are responding to your business.
Shipway Measure Carrier Performance
Another great-to-have feature is the carrier performance tracker. This advanced tool gives you a 360-degree view of all your carriers. You can track the following percentages for each of your carriers:
- Return to origin
You can track carrier performance for up to 90 days. The platform also allows you to set a specific date range to view the carrier’s performance. This feature is handy for peak times like the holiday season. You’ll soon figure out which carriers consistently beat the holiday rush.
Shipway partners with numerous tools and CMS platforms to offer more than 50 integrations with popular tools. Most of these partners support one-click integration. At the very least, integrating with your preferred tool is quick and easy.
Some of the most popular integrations include Zoho, WooCommerce, Magento, Shopify, and BigCommerce. Again, it would be nice to have a knowledge base to help you with integration. But, you shouldn’t have a problem in most cases.
Your CMS or ecommerce platform probably already has documentation if you run into any problems. It would be a nice feature to have all the same. It’s a good thing you can rely on Shipway’s support team to solve any challenges along the way.
Shipway is no doubt facing stiff competition in the shipment tracking plugins market. With big name users such as ShipStation and Shippo, this plugin certainly holds its own.
Shipway’s strongest suit is arguably its carrier support. With more than 600 supported carriers, your customers can easily track shipments almost anywhere in the world. There is also the option of adding carriers not already on Shipways’ list. To top it all off, you can track and compare all of your carrier’s performance.
Shipway also easily integrates with some of ecommerce’s biggest names. From eBay, WooCommerce, and Shopify, you can start using Shipway with just a few clicks of the mouse. The pricing model is also affordable, with access to excellent reporting and analytics tools to ensure you stay on top of your post-purchase strategy.
I highly recommend shipway for a small one-person operation, mid-sized ecommerce business, and even large online brands. You’ll be able to use your branding and bring traffic to your website when customers come to track their packages. Aside from the practical package tracking, Shipway offers a terrific platform to increase your visibility. You’ll also be able to build brand recall and share your sales and promotions to bolster brand loyalty.