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WooCommerce allows you to add shipping options as per your need. However, some of the terms in the shipping section are new and confusing for a lot of people. You can set shipping rates, shipping classes, shipping methods, etc. All these are confusing for some people. In most cases, shipping rates and shipping methods are easy to understand. People get confused when it comes to shipping class.

So, this article will be about WooCommerce what are shipping classes? No doubt, it will also cover the information about the shipping rates and shipping methods. Further, we will also talk about how you can set the shipping class.

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What is Shipping Class?

The shipping class is used to offer different shipping rates based on the product. This is very much useful when you have a different weight of the product. You can set different shipping classes for different weights of the product. The product with more weight will invite more shipping charge whereas the product with less weight will involve less shipping charges.

So, you can simply set a different class for each of the products. You can name the shipping class as per your wish and then you can add the products inside it. The user will see the class name and description.

You can not only use it for weight but you can also use it depending on the size or any other thing. You can create one class and then you can add the products manually. Please note that it will not automatically take the information. You will have to add the products manually to the shipping class.

In short, the shipping class is used to categorize a couple of products and set different shipping rates for them. This is very much useful when you have different types of products in your online store.

Difference Between Shipping Terms

Now, there are many other shipping terms used in WooCommerce. You might already be knowing about some. If not, here is a clear difference and the meaning of all the terms used.

Shipping rates: This a simple term used in the shipping. This is the rate that the customer will pay for the shipping

Shipping Method: This is the method of shipping. It could be via air, ship, car, drone, etc.

Shipping Zones: If you have different charges for different areas, you can set some of the areas in one zone and the other areas in a different zone. Customers will have to pay a different price for a different zone.

Shipping Class: Using this, you can offer different shipping rates depending on the products.

One can easily integrate shipping classes with the shipping zone.

For example, let’s say, you sell mobiles and laptops in Zona A and Zone B. By shipping class, you can set different shipping classes for each of them. So, if the customer purchases mobile, they will pay less shipping cost and if they purchase a laptop, the charges would be a lot more. So, the shipping class helps you decide what will be the pricing of each product. The user can pay the shipping fee accordingly.

In simpler words, WooCommerce gives you all the rights to add the shipping rates.

Who needs Shipping Class?

This is one of the major misconceptions among people. They think that the shipping class in only for the stores that have a huge number of products with different weights. However, it is surely not so. Many stores can effectively use the shipping class. Even if you don’t have a weight difference, you can use the shipping class.

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  • The first one is where you can use the shipping class as per the weight. Here, you can add extra shipping costs when the weight of the product is more.
  • You can also classify the shipping class as hazardous or insured. You can charge your users accordingly.
  • Sometimes, the weight of the product might be the same but if you have a big item in the store, it will require more packing cost and shipping cost, you can charge users accordingly. T
  • Regular items do not need a lot of packaging. However, if you are selling delicate items, you will need more packaging. Further, in some cases, you can’t even send the same items via the same shipping method. In such cases, you can add class as well as the method and charge the user accordingly.
  • You can also use it to offer free shipping on certain products.

In the same way, you can figure things about and use the shipping classes to suit your needs. The main aim here is to tell you that you don’t specifically need different weight to use it.  Just like the ones given above, you can think of a situation that suits your need and then create a class accordingly. It is up to you how you want to do it.

How to Add a Shipping Class?

Now, let’s get into the actual tutorial on how to add the shipping class. You can easily add the shipping class on your website.

Creating a Shipping Class

You can easily create a shipping class from WooCommerce settings. You can go to WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Shipping Class.

Just head over to the menu and you will find the option to add the shipping class. All of the options are given in the tabular form. So, when you head over to the WooCommerce > Settings, you will find various tabs. Just click on the Shipping tab. Inside it, you will find various small tabs. Here, you will have to look for the shipping class option.

Inside it, you can add the class. You will have to enter the information such as title, slug, and description. Just make sure that you enter the title and description properly. This will help you in identifying the class with ease.

Once you do it, you have successfully created the shipping class. You can create all the classes here with the same method. It is recommended to create all the classes before we move to the next step.

Once you publish the class, you will see the edit and delete option right there. You can use it just like the way you edit and delete WordPress post and WooCommerce products.

Thereafter, you will have to assign products to the shipping class.

Assigning Products to Shipping Class

The next thing you need to assign the products to the shipping class. You can go to the add new product option. Thereafter, all you have to do is head over to the shipping option in the product option.

From there, you can easily add the shipping class. All you need to do is select the shipping class and you are halfway there. Now, you just need to publish it. Hit the publish button and you are good to go. If you can’t find the shipping class option, it is right below the weight of the product. There is a drop-down given, you can select the shipping class from the drop-down given in it. That’s pretty much it. Thereafter, fill up other information and publish it.

The procedure is the same for all types of products whether you want to add simple products or variable products.

Changing the Pricing

The next task that you might be interested in is changing the shipping cost. If you want to change the shipping cost, you can do it from the shipping method.

If you have flat rate shipping enabled, you can use different pricing for all the shipping class. You will see the options for the same thing when you go to the shipping rates.

Further, if you have various zones, you can set different pricing for all the zones. You can create a table where you can display all the pricing. It is up to you how you want to deal with it.

Variable Products

Variable products, WooCommerce what are Shipping Classes

Now, if you talk about the variable products, you will have two options. You can either set the sane shipping class for all the variations or you can set different shipping classes for each of them.

Here, we will be seeing how you can set up that.

To set the shipping class, you will have to head over to the variation tab in the variable product. Inside it, you will find the options to set the shipping class. You can set different for each of them.

There are two options here. One is where you can set “Same as a parent” or you can set the custom shipping class.

If you click on “Same as a parent”, it will inherit the same class as the parent class. You can set the parent shipping class from the Shipping tab in the product option.

This is very much useful when you are using size variations. The small size might contain less space. So, the shipping cost will below. However, the costs would be more when it comes to the large-sized product. In this case, you can set a different class for the large size and the low cost for the small size product. All this can be possible with the help of the shipping class.

Bulk Editing

You can edit the shipping class of all the products by just a few clicks. This can easily be done via bulk editing. If you are not already aware of it, this is for you.

All you have to do is head over to the products and select the products whose shipping class you want to change. You can then select “Bulk action” from the drop-down menu and click on edit. You will see the option to edit the classes. You can bulk edit all the products with this simple little trick.

If you don’t want to use this method, you can surely do the same thing with one of the bulk editing plugins. There are many free as well as paid plugins that can help you with this issue. You can see which one is useful for you and try it out.

Things to Keep in Mind

Now, let’s have a look at some of the things that you should keep in mind while dealing with shipping classes.

  • You need to set the name of the product correctly.
  • Make sure you include the proper reason in the description. The reason will tell why you are charging extra. This will make things easier for customers.
  • You can add as many shipping classes as you want.
  • Various plugins are compatible with shipping classes. You can use table rate shipping and many others to get advanced functionalities here.
  • You can also set one default shipping class which you can use for the rest of the items.
  • It is completely optional to add a shipping class. You can add it if your website is compatible with it or you can choose to ignore it. It is always your choice.
  • Shipping zones and shipping classes are the two things where people often get confused. Make sure you know both of the things correctly and use it properly to increase sales.
  • Last but not the least, you can check out the plugins that can make your work easier. In most cases, the default functionalities will not be enough, you will need more of them. For that, you can use the plugin directory to find it out.

Final Words

To conclude, this was all about the shipping class. To recall, WooCommerce shipping class is a class used to categorized products to offer different shipping options to them. This will be useful when you are having a website where you have multiple products and most of them are not in the same size. Using the shipping class, you can offer different rates for all of them. In this way, you will not lose money when shipping large products to your customer.

Hack: You can even remove the shipping charge and include it in the price. People love it when you offer them free shipping regardless of the product being high-priced. Depending on your store, you can use this small trick.


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