Introducing Smart Pack for WooCommerce
Smart Pack is the packing calculator we’ve all been waiting for.
It’s now officially released with version 2.2 of the Smart Send Australian Shipping plugin. Download it here.
Here’s a video that talks about it briefly:
Using Smart Pack
Smart Pack provides the simplest way of getting multiples of individual products in to larger packages, cutting down on the returned quote price at checkout, and when you fulfill the order.
Simply put, you specify in the plugin which packages you have a available, and then from the product edit page, designate how many of that product fit in to your various packages.
Adding and Editing Packages
The first thing you need to do is to tell the plugin which packages you have available to send stuff in. We’ve included the standard range of packaging available from your local Australia Post store, as well as the standard road satchels from Fastway and Couriers Please.
Existing packages are on the right, and can be edited or deleted.
To add a new package, use the form on the left of the page.
Adding a Package Type
To add a new custom package type, first use a name that will allow you to readily identify it.
Slug will be automatically generated if you don’t specify something.
Finally, you need to specify the dimensions of the package, and its maximum weight – that is, the most it can carry. When calculating shipping, the actually weight used will be the combined weight of the items inside it.
Products and Packing Instructions
Now that we have our packages, we can tell Smart Pack what can fit in them. At checkout, the shipping calculator will see if you’ve laid down any packing instructions for the products in the cart and instead of asking for quotes on each one individually, will return a price based on several of them in the one box.
To set packing instructions, go to Products, select a product and then click the ‘Shipping’ tab:
To add a packing instruction, click the ‘Choose Package’ dropdown:
Smart Pack will have made a rough estimate of what it should be able to contain – but you should always ensure that the container will hold that number of the product. Should the dimensions or weight vary from that you specify, you may be liable for additional shipping charges.
Clicking on ‘Add’ will activate that packing instruction, and you can delete them by click the little ‘x’ within each instruction box.
If the package you have selected seems to be too small or has a capacity less than the weight of the items, a small warning will be shown. Once again, the is advisory – it’s up to you to make sure things fit.
Multiple Instructions will allow for the maximum number of scenarios; the algorithm will try to fit as many as possible in the smallest packages (to save on costs)
Variable Product Packing Instructions
In the same way that you can specify custom dimensions and weights for product variants, you can also set variant-specific packing instructions (if the variant dimensions differ from the ‘parent’ product)
Fixed Price Satchels Warning:
Fastway and Couriers Please fixed-price road satchels do not deliver to every Australian address. If you have specified one of these for a product, and the shipping solution is a different carrier, you will be warned to use a different packaging solution to avoid non-delivery or return of shipment at your cost.
Fulfillment and Final Packing
When it comes time to head to the orders screen and fulfill shipping, you’ll be presented with packing instructions – if you’ve set no specific instructions for that product, it will just say ‘send as-is’ but if you did set up packing instructions, you’ll see a result conversant with what you specified; look at the image above and you’ll see that the 8 items in the order were packed efficiently in to the specified containers:
So that’s about it. Please feel free to ask if you have any further questions or need further clarification. We recommend that you watch the instructional video at the top of the page.