It probably won’t be a shock to say that WooCommerce is our favorite eCommerce tool. However, we realize that it does have its flaws. One of them is certainly the lack of import and export shipping methods. That’s why we created the Flexible Shipping Import/Export WooCommerce plugin that allows you to easily import and export shipping methods in WooCommerce.
When developing the Flexible Shipping Import/Export plugin, we focused on meeting three important needs that our customers reported to us. Those needs are: export shipping methods to different WooCommerce stores, moving shipping methods between shipping zones, and manually update prices of multiple shipping methods at the same time. We believe that with our plugin all these actions will become much easier.
The plugin allows you to easily import and export shipping methods created with the Flexible Shipping plugin. It also works with the Flexible Shipping PRO plugin and the Flexible Shipping Locations Add-on.
How to export shipping methods in WooCommerce?
First, install and activate the Flexible Shipping Import/Export plugin. Then go to the shipping zone in your WooCommerce store. Under the list of all shipping methods, you will find the Flexible Shipping Import/Export button. Use it to open the import/export window.
To export shipping methods, select Export.
After selecting the export option, you will see all the shipping methods that are available to export. You can choose to export all shipping methods or select specific ones. Then click the Export Methods button. The plugin will create a CSV file and download it. If you export multiple shipping methods, they will all be in one CSV file.
Please have in mind that the Flexible Shipping Import/Export plugin only exports shipping methods created with the Flexible Shipping plugin. If the plugin doesn’t detect any methods to export, it will display the error message:
In this case, create new Flexible Shipping methods that can then be exported to a CSV file. You can use the Add your first Flexible Shipping method button to do it.
How to import shipping methods in WooCommerce?
To import a shipping method, you will need a CSV file with the shipping methods. It is best to simply export the shipping method, but you can create this file yourself. If you want to learn more about the supported format or want to download a sample CSV file, check out the plugin documentation.
When you’ll have your CSV file, go to the shipping zones where you want to import shipping methods. Under the list of all methods, you will find the Flexible Shipping Import/Export button. Use it to open the import/export window.
To import a shipping method, you will need to upload a CSV file. You can click the center of the box in the window to select the file you want to upload, or simply drag and drop it into this location. The plugin only accepts CSV files with a correctly configured data structure.
Once the file is loaded, the plugin will display all the shipping methods available to import. For each method there are three possible actions:
- Create a new shipping method
- Don't import (ignore)
- Update shipping method - you can choose which method do you want to update
Here, you can also enable imported shipping methods. If you are not updating any shipping methods, select Create New Shipping Method and then Import Methods.
If the import was successful, you will receive a confirmation message.
You can now refresh the page or use the Refresh and go to the shipping zone button.
Practical use of import and export shipping methods
Now, that you know how to import and export shipping methods in WooCommerce using the Flexible Shipping Import/Export plugin, let's talk about the practical use of these options. As I mentioned earlier we were focused on the three most popular scenarios: export shipping methods to different WooCommerce stores, moving shipping methods between shipping zones, and manually update prices of multiple shipping methods at the same time.
Export shipping methods to different WooCommerce stores
If you manage more than one WooCommerce-based store, you surely know that it takes a lot of time to set up each new store. With the import and export features, you can easily transfer shipping methods from one WooCommerce store to another. It can also be very useful if you want to add a new shipping service to all of your stores. Using the Flexible Shipping Import/Export plugin, you can set it in one store, export the shipping method and just import it to each one of the other stores.
Moving shipping methods between shipping zones
If you ship your products to several countries, you certainly spend a lot of time setting up your shipping methods. Shipping rates of courier companies are usually based on weight and differ for most countries. Setting one shipping method with weight based shipping can take some time to configure. When you multiply that by the number of shipping zones, the entire shipping setup can take several hours. With the Flexible Shipping Import/Export plugin you’ll have to configure only one shipping method, and then import it for each shipping zone.
Update prices of multiple shipping methods at the same time
Another practical way to use import and export shipping methods in WooCommerce is to manually update the prices of multiple shipping methods at the same time. This will work well when you have several shipping methods in one shipping zone and need to update them. This often happens when couriers update their prices. Instead of going from one method to another and changing the values in each shipping method, you can export all the shipping methods and change the prices directly in the CSV file. This will allow you to change all prices in one place and save you time.