Shopify Shipping vs ShipStation: Which shipping software should I use?

Published on March 25, 2022
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Filed under ShipStation Product
Read time 6 Minutes

Shipping Shopify orders requires some strategy but it can be quite simple and affordable once you have a plan in place. If you’re new to selling online with Shopify, this guide on ecommerce shipping is a great resource. 

Shipping orders you ship from your own website don’t always have the same restrictions as marketplace orders do. Because of this, you are more in control of making sure that your orders ship out on schedule. You are also responsible for handling returns and other customer shipping concerns as well. While this can add additional responsibilities and time to your workload, it also can be a more economical option for you and lead to more personal conversations with your customers. 

Features Available in Both

Shopify Shipping is a great shipping platform for your Shopify orders. However, as you grow into multichannel ecommerce, you need a more robust shipping option. This is where third-party shipping platforms like ShipStation start being scalable solutions. There are advantages to each depending on your business’s size. 

Discounted Rates

Luckily, ShipStation and Shopify Plus both offer similar shipping discounts with UPS, USPS, and DHL. So regardless of which platform you choose, you will be saving on shipping costs. 

Rate Calculator

ShipStation and Shopify Shipping both offer a rate calculator to compare available shipping rates. 

Automated Tracking Updates

Both offer real-time tracking updates for orders and send shipping confirmation emails to customers. And if you use ShipStation to ship, you can still use Shopify confirmation emails if you prefer. =

Schedule a Carrier Pickup

If you use ShipStation or Shopify Plus, you don’t have to worry about going to the post office. You can schedule a courier to come and pick up your day’s packages. 

Inventory Management

You can manage and view your Shopify inventory in ShipStation just as you would within Shopify. 

Shopify Shipping Benefits

Shopify Shipping is a native shipping solution available to all Shopify accounts for free. It features many tools that are available on third-party shipping platforms. The plus though is that this is native to Shopify and available for no extra charge. If you don’t want to deal with an external third-party shipping software, it’s a great native option for shipping your Shopify orders. 

Shopify Shipping Pros

ShipStation Benefits

ShipStation is a good shipping option for larger merchants that sell across multiple channels—or if you want a bit more customization in their workflow. While Shopify offers this great internal tool for native orders, a scalable shipping solution works better if it’s a standalone platform that integrates with all of your selling channels. This is the major advantage of ShipStation and other standalone shipping platforms. 

Additionally, if you find yourself wanting to batch print your day’s labels, ShipStation offers efficient workflows. For instance, ShipStation lets you view up to 500 orders at a time and you can print all these labels at the same time instead of having to individually view each order. And since we receive the selected shipping option from Shopify, ShipStation automatically maps it to your preferred shipping service (UPS Ground, USPS Priority Mail, etc). 

ShipStation Pros

Shipping Shopify Plus Orders

Shopify Plus is a great enterprise selling platform. And using Shopify’s native shipping is a great way to keep your orders and shipping in one place. However, if you use Shopify Plus, you may have additional order sources or CRMs or ERP platforms that you also integrate with. If this is the case, you may need a dedicated shipping platform. Luckily, ShipStation offers dedicated support for Enterprise accounts


There is not a wrong choice when it comes to choosing Shopify Shipping or ShipStation. It ultimately just comes down to preference. Many of ShipStation’s features are available in Shopify and you can access them all for no additional cost. However, if you want to fulfill multichannel orders, a dedicated shipping platform like ShipStation may be the best option.


Written by

James Messer

James Messer is a copywriter specializing in shipping, logistics, and ecommerce.

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