How does shipping work?


During the e-check, an order’s shipping label is printed. A shipper is selected for an order at two points in the process: during verification and during the e-check. The choice made during verification is an estimate. The final dimensions and weight of the package will only be known after selecting the carriers during the e-check. The process of choosing a shipper consists of two steps:

  • First, it is determined what shipper options are available
  • Out of this list of possible shippers, the preferred shipper is selected.

These steps are explained in more detail below. For an order, the choice of shipper is described in an attachment.

Shipper options
The following checks are performed to determine if a shipper is available for an order

  • Can a shipper be selected automatically? A shipper can have the feature of being eligible for automatic selection. This can also be defined per shipper per client. If a shipper has this feature, the shipper will not be selected for an order unless this was explicitly indicated via the link or the MontaPortal.
  • Choice via the link/MontaPortal. The consumer may already have selected a shipper in the webshop. Alternatively, a shipper may have been selected for the order in the MontaPortal. In that case, other shippers cannot be selected.
  • Once chosen, can a different shipper be selected? Some shippers (such as pick-up points) cannot be changed after being chosen.
  • Minimum insured value. It is possible to set a minimum insured value for an order. In that case, only shippers who offer this service can be selected.
  • Fits through a letterbox. A letterbox shipper can only be selected if the shipment will fit through a letterbox.

    This is verified as follows:
  • for all products, it is determined whether the dimensions fall within the limits for letterbox mail
  • for the selected carriers for whom dimensions have been specified, it is determined whether these fall within the limits for letterbox mail
  • the box ‘will never fit through a letterbox‘ must not be checked for any of the selected carriers
  • during the e-check, the question ‘will it fit through a letterbox‘ must not be answered with ‘no‘. Checks:
  • Maximum dimensions. A shipper can have maximum dimensions. All carriers and products in an order must not exceed these dimensions. A product can have special shipping dimensions. Think of e.g. a dog bed that is unfolded while in storage, but which can be folded up for shipping.
  • Maximum volume. A shipper can have a maximum volume. The volume of every package must not exceed this volume. In the shipping matrix (i.e. per channel), a maximum volume may also be set per shipper per country.
  • Maximum weight. A shipper can have a maximum weight. The weight of all packages and products must not exceed this maximum. A maximum weight may also be defined for a channel’s potential shippers.
  • Maximum length. A maximum length may also be defined for a channel’s potential shippers.
  • Minimum weight. A shipper can have a minimum weight. The weight of the package must exceed this minimum.
  • Maximum size (2xH + 2xW + 1xL). A shipper can have a maximum size. All packages and products must fall within this maximum size.
  • Pallets. If an order includes pallets, it can only be shipped with a pallet shipper. If an order does not include pallets, it cannot be shipped with a pallet shipper.
  • PO Box. Shipping orders to PO Boxes is only possible with PostNL.
  • Available countries. For each shipper, the available countries are defined.
  • Big/small. For some shippers, there is a larger option: the maximum dimensions and/or weight are larger, but the shipping costs are higher as well. This larger option is only available if the smaller option is not possible.

    Choosing a preferred shipper
    Out of the list of possible shippers, a preferred shipper is selected. Choosing a preferred shipper is done as follows. The order of the steps is important here.
  1. Shipper per material. It is possible to specify that certain products must be shipped with a specific shipper. If this applies to a product in an order, that shipper will be the preferred shipper.
  2. Do not use after pick-up time. For a channel, it is possible to specify that a certain shipper cannot be used anymore after the pick-up time. This ensures that a different shipper with a later pick-up time is given preference, so the order can be shipped that same day. This may mean that an order that can fit through a letterbox is shipped as a parcel because the pick-up time for letterbox mail has already passed.
  3. Letterbox shippers are given preference because their rates are lower.
  4. For each channel, it is possible to select a preferred shipper for a specific country. Different settings may apply to B2B and B2C orders.
  5. A standard shipper is selected for each channel.

    For each available shipper, there is a page with more information about that shipper.
    For each available shipper, there is a page with more information about that shipper.

    Shipper options
    Extra options such as ‘do not deliver to neighbours‘. Shipper options can be added to an order as follows:
  • Via the link
  • By specifying for a channel that a shipper option must be added to all orders or only to orders that meet certain criteria.

    Insured shipping
    It is possible to set an insured value for an order. The system will then select a shipper that offers insured shipping for this amount.

    Dangerous goods
    When verifying an order, it will be determined whether any of the products in the order are marked as ‘dangerous goods‘. If the box marked ‘report dangerous goods to shipper‘ is checked, the PostNL shipper option ‘ADR‘ will be added to the order.