For an ecommerce business, regardless of the type and size, customer satisfaction purely depends on how well you have handled the order fulfillment of the products ordered.
Managing order fulfillment and shipping is simple when your store is smaller but as it grows, shipping is not the easiest things to manage. You have to manipulate through multiple shipping carriers to ensure the products delivered to your customers all over the world in the best possible time and cost. You also need to handle the return from the customers who reject their deliveries in the best possible way.
Fortunately, there are plenty of software solution that gives small ecommerce businesses access to the best with no hidden markup or monthly fees possible shipping rates. In this Pirate Ship review, we will be looking at all the features it offers, its pricing, its pros and cons, compare it with similar tools and if it is worth your money or not?
- 1 Pirate Ship Review: Overview
- 2 Pirate Ship Review: Features
- 3 How Does Pirate Ship Works
- 4 Creating Labels in Pirate Ship
- 5 Upload Address Spreadsheets Into Pirate Ship
- 6 Connect Your Store to Pirate Ship
- 7 Scheduling Package Pickups in Pirate Ship
- 8 Shipping Insurance in Pirate Ship
- 9 Pirate Ship Review: Pricing
- 10 Pirate Ship Review: Customer Support
- 11 Pirate Ship Alternatives
- 12 Pirate Ship Review : Conclusion
Pirate Ship Review: Overview
Pirate Ship is a cloud-based shipping software that allows small businesses to access the cheapest shipping rates with no hidden markup or monthly fees. It’s ideal for startups and small businesses as its services can be availed for free with no additional hidden costs.
Pirate Ship was founded by Bjorn Borstelmann in 2014 as an ecommerce ordering solution with cheap rates for USPS shipping. Pirate Ship is the only shipping solution that provides you the cheapest rates for the USPS approved postage with absolutely no markup, fees or monthly commitments.
Pirate Ship also provides tools for collection the weight and dimension of a package, postage purchase integration, address input, and mobile shipping label printing etc. to streamline the shipping process. Using mobile shipping label printing tool, you can print labels on your printers and hand over the packages to USPS once printing is done.
Pirate Ship Review: Features
Pirate Ship offers a wide range of features for small businesses as well as established ones also. Some of them are as follows:
- Turn Addresses Into Shipping Labels – Pirate Ship allows you to import addresses from any spreadsheet file type (CSV, ODS, XLS, or XLSX) and create shipping labels using just one-step form. It also allows you to directly import address and orders details from ecommerce platforms like Shopify, eBay, Etsy, WooCommerce and more.
- Automatic Address Validation & Correction – Pirate Ship automatically verifies the domestic addresses against the USPS® address database. Also, if the address is not formatted correctly, Pirate Ship will make minor changes automatically.
- Customizable Shipping Notifications – Pirate Ship allows you to schedule an email that sends the tracking number to your recipient. To use this feature, make sure you include an email for your recipients when uploading a spreadsheet of addresses or creating a single label.
- Easy International Shipping – You can easily expand your business globally with the simplest, cheapest international shipping rates available with Pirate Ship. Pirate Ship’s simple export rate offers the cheapest pricing for shipping packages that weigh less than 4 pounds internationally.
- Saved Package Presets – Pirate Ship’s saved packages are great if you ship tons of the same size of packages to your customers. This is great for someone who sends subscription boxes, coffee companies, or those who ship the same items repeatedly.
- Address Auto-Complete – Pirate Ship’s duplicate shipment button allows you to quickly create a new label based on a previous shipment’s data. Using this feature you can create a Single Label page, with the same address and shipment details pre-filled, that you can review and edit all the information before buying the label.
How Does Pirate Ship Works
Pirate Ship allows you to create labels for your personal or business shipments and have USPS deliver them for you. To start using the Pirate Ship, you just need to create a free account on their website. After you sign up, you will get access to their easy-to-use dashboard, where you can purchase the cheapest USPS parcel shipping services.
Pirate Ship enables you to print shipping labels at the cheapest rates available with no markup, fees. You can purchase and print for all USPS shipping services by either manually entering the shipping address, uploading a spreadsheet of addresses, or connecting to an ecommerce platform.
Once you have logged in to Pirate Ship you can create a label, choose your USPS service, get a quick rate quote for your shipment, connect your ecommerce store etc. all from an easy-to-use dashboard. Pirate Sip automatically chooses the cheapest USPS service for your shipment. So, you don’t need to worry about selecting the cheapest shipping method.
Creating Labels in Pirate Ship
Creating labels in Pirate Ship is effortless and just takes few minutes to create it no matter where you are shipping your products.
Creating Domestic Labels
To create a label for your U.S. recipients, log in to your Pirate Ship dashboard and click on the button Create a single label on the page and you will be presented with a form where you need to enter your recipient information in the corresponding address fields.
Next, you’ll need to enter the package details of the shipment such as dimensions and weights (in both ounces and pounds). You have the options to expand the type of packaging by clicking on the field and selecting the proper value. A visual example of choosing your Packaging Type and Services is as shown below:
When you are done entering all the information, click on the button Get Rates and review your recipient address and order details. After reviewing if you label looks good, you can click the Buy Label button to generate your label and click on the green Print Label button to print out your label whenever you’re ready.
Creating International Labels
Creating an international label is similar to domestic label except you have to fill out a customs form before clicking on the Get Rates button. These custom forms are used decide whether your recipient will need to pay import taxes or duties on declared items by custom department personnel.
Pirate Ship automatically displays these custom forms when ship to country other than the United States is selected. Also, if you package weight is more than 1 pound, then you need to fill this form even for countries like Puerto Rico, Guam, US Virgin Islands, US Minor Outlying Islands, FPO & APO Military. A typical custom for on Pirate Ship is as shown below:
Some of the fields are as follows:
- Sign Customs Form As – You either enter your name or your business name for this field. If this field is filled out, you don’t need to physically sign the custom forms after printing it.
- Package Content Type – Select the type of package content from the dropdown, whether you’re shipping Merchandise, Documents, or a Gift.
- Content Description – Here you need to enter the details of the content by mentioning its quantity, description and its value in the appropriate fields respectively. If you are shipping a package with multiple items, then you need to provide information for each item, by clicking Add Line Item to add new rows
- Enter TOTALS for Qty, Value, and Weight – Add the total value of the total quantity of that item, the total value of all the items, total weight of the items and enter these values in this line.
- Harmonization Codes – This is an optional field, but they’re helpful for customs agents in foreign countries to classify a product, and it is used to define the duties and taxes to be paid. You can click on the Search #’s link to find the correct code to use for your item and enter it in the provided field.
- Origin – it is the country where the product is produced, manufactured, or assembled.
Upload Address Spreadsheets Into Pirate Ship
You can upload multiple addresses into Pirate Ship using any type of spreadsheet (supported file types include CSV, ODS, XLS, and XLSX). Just you need to make sure that, each part of the address data is separated into multiple columns and the first row is a “header” row with titles for each column of data such as Name, Email, Address Line 1, Address Line 2, City, State, Zip, Country etc.
To upload a spreadsheet in Pirate Ship, click on the button Upload a Spreadsheet in the admin dashboard. It will open a dialog box to select and upload the file. Select the file and upload it. Next, it will show a form to confirm field mapping as shown below:
The fields will be automatically mapped based on your previous settings, if a field is not mapped, then select the correct field from the dropdown. Some fields. Some fields may not be obvious, for those you can select Do Not Import, this means data will not be imported. You can also select Passthrough, then this data will not be used in label creation. But if you want any of the information to be printed in the label, map those fields to any of the rubber stamps, then those fields will be printed on the bottom.
After you are done, click on the button Confirm Mapping. Next you need to provide the default package details. All items in a package me be of the same package type as Pirate Ship doesn’t allow you to select different pa cake type for each item.
You need to select the type of packaging and enter the package dimensions and weight details to create the batch. Click Get Rates when done. The next page will show you the rates for your shipment and will be categorized in less than one pound, greater than one pound and international shipments.
To complete your order, click on the button Buy Labels. Once you have purchased the labels you can print all the labels at once by clicking the button Print Labels shown on the next page as shown below.
Connect Your Store to Pirate Ship
Pirate Ship connects with major ecommerce shopping cart solution and online marketplaces. Shippo integrates directly with the following ecommerce platforms:
- Big Cartel
- Moon Clerk
You can connect Pirate Ship to your ecommerce platform either from your ecommerce platform or from your existing Pirate Ship account.
Connecting from your platform
To connect to the Pirate Ship from your ecommerce platform follow the following steps:
- Find Pirate Ship in the app store of your platform and download it
- Create a Pirate Ship account and click Register on the Pirate Ship app
- Your store will automatically be connected with Pirate Ship
Connecting from your existing Pirate Ship account
To connect to your ecommerce platform from your existing Pirate Ship account, navigate to Settings -> Integrations in your Pirate Ship account and select your desired ecommerce platform from the list of platform shown:
On the next page, enter the requested information such as your store URL, and click on the Connect button.
Next page will show you to enter your store credential to login to your store, enter the details and your store will be connected to Pirate Ship.
Scheduling Package Pickups in Pirate Ship
After you have created the shipping labels, you can schedule the package pickup for USPS from within the Pirate Ship. To schedule a free pickup, navigate to the Ship page and click the big blue button Schedule a Pickup.
It will show you a form, where you can request for a free pickup of your packages from USPS.
You first need to select the pickup location from your saved Ship From Addresses you’d like USPS to use. You can also tell them the package location, where the packages will be left with the next drop-down bar.
In the last, you’ll need to mention the number of packages for each service, along with the Estimated Total Weight (lbs) of all packages included in the pickup. Free pickups are scheduled for the next day and USPS will pick up packages every day of the week except Sunday.
Shipping Insurance in Pirate Ship
Some USPS services such as Priority Mail, Priority Mail Cubic and Priority Mail Flat Rate comes with $100 of insurance from USPS for free. Pirate Ship also offer additional 3rd party insurance through their partnership with Shipsurance, a leading third-party provider of package insurance.
To add third-party insurance for any shipment, simply select the Insurance check box in the extra services section while creating labels and enter the declared package value.
For services that already include insurance, the third-party insurance will only be added if you declare value $101 or more. I highly recommend adding Insurance for all international shipments as other country’s postal services aren’t as good as the USA. The breakdown for the insurance charges are as follows:
- Domestic Shipments: $0.75 for up to $50, then $0.80 per $100
- International Shipments: $1.35 per $100
- Limit: $5,000 per shipment, or $1,000 for USPS First Class Package Service
Pirate Ship Review: Pricing
Pirate Ship is 100% free to use with no markups, fees, or minimums. As an independent shipping services provider for the United States Postal Service and you get the cheapest rates USPS offers.
Pirate Ship Review: Customer Support
Pirate Ship provides extensive relevant articles and guides for all its features, you can view it on their support page. Pirate Ship provides basic support via email on [email protected] or by using the live chat option at the bottom right-hand corner of their website.
Pirate Ship Alternatives
Pirate Ship is a great tool to manage your entire shipping and return management for your ecommerce store, but there are some other tools also that are as good as Pirate Ship. Let’s have a look at some of them:
- Pirate Ship vs ShipStation – ShipStation is also a cloud-based tool for managing the entire shipping and order fulfillment process like Shippo. It is capable of integrating with various ecommerce platforms, online marketplaces, shipping carriers, payment gateway solutions, and other sales channels. ShipStation offer a free trial period of 30 days and after that, the cheapest plan is $9 / month.
- Pirate Ship vs ShippingEasy – ShippingEasy is a software-as-a-service solution that you can use to streamline your business fulfillment operations. You can integrate it with various ecommerce platforms, online marketplaces, shipping carriers, payment gateway solutions, and other sales channels. It also offers completely free trial on all packages and doesn’t require a credit card and also offers a starter package for FREE to ship a maximum of 50 packages per month.
- Shippo vs EasyShip – EasyShip is also a cloud-based tool for managing the entire shipping and order fulfillment process. It integrates seamlessly with lots of sales channels such as ecommerce platforms, online marketplaces, shipping carriers, payment gateway solutions etc. It offers a FREE package to ship a maximum of 100 packages per month and after that, the cheapest plan is $29 / month.
- Pirate Ship vs Shippo – Shippo is a cloud-based shipping software that you can connect with your ecommerce store for shipping solution and management. It will help you manage your entire shipping and return management for your ecommerce store. The pay as you go plan is great for small ecommerce merchants, as there are absolutely no commitments attached to this plan at $0.05 per shipment (plus the cost of postage).
Pirate Ship Review : Conclusion
We have reviewed all the features of Pirate Ship and also mentioned some of its alternative, it is a fantastic tool for new ecommerce merchants or startups. Best of all is, it is 100% free to use its services, and you get the cheapest rates USPS offers.