How to Set Up WooCommerce Free Shipping

How to Set Up WooCommerce Free Shipping 2024 | Step-by-Step Guide

  • Mohammad MirajMohammad Miraj
  • March 15, 2024
  • WooCommerce
  • About 17 Min Read

Have you heard the myth that free shipping eats out your profits?

Many WooCommerce store owners worry that offering free shipping means losing money on every delivery. 

But hold on!

Did you know that 80% of customers add products to their cart but don’t complete the purchase because of shipping costs?

That’s where free shipping can be a game-changer to recover this incomplete purchase as well as increase your sales. 

Free shipping motivates customers to spend more, eventually leading to a double win for your business. 

And the result? 

66% of online shoppers now expect free shipping on every purchase. And even more, 33% of consumers will shop at stores offering free delivery.

In this blog, we will discuss a step-by-step guide on how to set up WooCommerce free shipping.

So, let’s jump in to explore the ways to boost your sales with WooCommerce free shipping!

Why and When Should You Offer Free Shipping in WooCommerce?

If you see “free shipping” offered everywhere but can’t decide how it will work to bring in sales,. Then, here are some compelling reasons why you should consider offering free shipping for your WooCommerce store:

  • Free shipping is easy for buyers and makes shopping more enjoyable.
  • It also helps prevent people from leaving their carts without making a purchase.
  • Beyond the obvious perks, free shipping can significantly boost conversion rates, turning casual browsers into happy customers.
  • Moreover, free shipping isn’t just about convenience; it’s a smart way to cut down on customer service costs linked to returns. 

However, giving free shipping for every order might be tough for small and midsized businesses. So, be sure to have a good plan when using free shipping.

So, now you’ve unlocked the magic of free shipping for your WooCommerce store.

So, now let’s check out when you should offer free shipping for maximum sales:

1. Promotional Sales & Big Deals

You can make your sales even better with free shipping on promotional campaigns or big sales. In proportional sales, people get to know more about your products. 

And if your buyers see that free shipping is available, then they’re more likely to complete their purchase and become paying customers. This free shipping during the promotional period is extremely valuable if you’re running a new or small business.

2. Stock Clearance Sale

In some cases, you’ve got some things sitting around, but your customers aren’t showing interest in those products. Then, offering free shipping on clearance sales will be the best strategy to bring them back. 

Announce a “Free Shipping on Sale” deal and see the magic. Suddenly, those older items become way more attractive, with free delivery on top. It’s a win-win because you get rid of some stuff, and customers score awesome deals with free shipping.

3. Free Shipping Surprises

Free shipping isn’t just for special times. Surprise your customers with it throughout the year. 

For example, offer free shipping on weekdays to get more sales in the middle of the week. Or, have a surprise “Free Shipping Friday” to keep things exciting!

Remember, free shipping is like magic for your store.  Use it during sales, clearance events, and other cool times to turn those looky-loos into happy customers who keep coming back for more. 

How to Set Up WooCommerce Free Shipping on All Products?

Setting up WooCommerce free shipping on all of your products is a straight-forward and simple process. 

Let’s check the main 3 steps:

  • Create a shipping zone
  • Add free shipping zone
  • Verify free shipping

Now, let’s go into the proper details of each step and successfully set up WooCommerce free shipping for all products.

Step 1: Create a shipping Zone

Shipping zones in WooCommerce are graphical areas where you want to offer your shipping. 

It lets you group certain areas (like countries or states), or one specific state, and set specific shipping rates or methods for those areas.

First, navigate to your WordPress dashboard and go to WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping.

WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping

Then, you have to find the Shipping Zones section. Look for the “Shipping Zones” section under the WooCommerce shipping settings. 

You might see a default zone named “Rest of the World” already there.

Rest of the World

Now, you’ve got to create a new zone here. Click the “Add Zone” button at the top of the “Shipping Zones” section. 

Here, give your new zone a clear and descriptive name. This will help you identify it easily later.  

For example: here I’m creating a zone for customers in my country, so, I am going to name it “Local Shipping.

Local Shipping

Just, under the Zone Name, define the Zone Regions. Here’s where you tell WooCommerce which locations fall under this zone. You can choose from:

Zone Regions
  • Countries: Select specific countries your store ships to.
  • States: If you only ship within a specific country (like the US), you can define states within that country.
Select specific countries your store ships to

Note: Here, you’ll get an option to filter the regions using the postcodes of your target regions. You can add up as many postcodes as you want.

postcodes of your target regions

Once you’ve defined the zone name and region, click the “Save Changes” button at the bottom of the page to save your zone.

defined the zone name and region

Now, moving on to step 2, you need to add shipping methods (Flat Rate or Free Shipping) specifically for your above-created shipping zone. 

Step 2: Add a free shipping method 

Now that you have your shipping zone created in WooCommerce, let’s add the free shipping method to it:

First, access the Shipping Zone. Within the “Shipping Zones” section, locate the zone you just created. 

Here, I set the name of the shipping zone as “Local Shipping“. Click on the edit option of the zone edit its settings.

set the name of the local shipping zone

Now, look for a section titled “Shipping methods“. Click the “Add shipping method” button.

Shipping methods

A list of shipping methods will appear. From the pop-up menu, select “Free Shipping“. And then, hit Continue. This tells WooCommerce to offer free shipping to all the customers within your zone.

You’ll likely see existing shipping methods like Free shipping, Flat Rate, or local pickup. 

Free shipping, Flat Rate, or local pickup. 

Now, it’s time to set up your free shipping method. Here, there will be two sections, one is Name and the other is free shipping required. 

By default, the name will be Free Shipping. But, you can set the name according to your preferences. Here, I keep the default name.

For, free shipping required, you will get a selection list from the drop-down.

By default, there will be no requirement

But, you can set any of the following options. 

  • No requirement
  • Valid free shipping coupon
  • Minimum order amount
  • Minimum order amount OR coupon
  • Minimum order amount AND coupon

WooCommerce offers you flexibility in setting requirements for your free shipping method. 

Here’s a detailed breakdown of each option:

1. No requirement:

This is the simplest option, which means free shipping applies to all orders in your chosen zone, regardless of the order amount or any coupons used. It’s a great way to encourage buying and create a more customer-friendly store.

2. A valid free shipping coupon:

With this option, customers need to have a specific coupon code applied at checkout to unlock free shipping. This allows you to create targeted promotions or reward loyal customers with exclusive free shipping offers.

3. A minimum order amount:

This option sets a threshold where customers only qualify for free shipping if their order subtotal reaches or exceeds the specified amount. 

This can be a great strategy to encourage customers to spend a bit more to reach the free shipping edge. It will potentially increase your average order value.

4. A minimum order amount OR coupon:

Here, customers have two ways to get free shipping. They can either:

  • Reach the minimum order amount you set, Or
  • Apply a valid free shipping coupon.

This offers more flexibility for your customers and can encourage them to explore the coupon options. Again, they still have the chance of free shipping through the minimum order amount.

5. A minimum order amount AND coupon:

This option sets the strictest requirement. Customers need to both reach the minimum order amount and apply a valid free shipping coupon to get free shipping. 

This might be useful for very specific promotions or high-value orders.

Now, what should you consider while choosing the right option?

The best option for your store depends on your goals and target audience. Consider factors like:

  • Check your current customer data and examine how your customers usually react to different order amounts or coupon use 
  • Check out what your competitors are providing for free shipping in the market.
  • Keep in mind that shipping costs may be higher for heavier or bulkier items. So, adjust your minimum order threshold accordingly.

So, pick the free shipping approach that aligns with your business goals and what your customers prefer.

Step 3: Verify free shipping

Finally, once you’ve configured the free shipping method, click the “Save” button at the bottom of the page. Once you’re done, check out and verify the offer of free shipping on all products.

How do you set Woocommerce Free Shipping for specific products?

If you want to offer free shipping for specific products rather than all products, it’s also possible in Woocommerce. However, there are 2 methods to do this, one is manual and the other is automated or optional. You can choose any according to your preference.

Here, I’ll discuss both methods. The methods are as follows:

  • Using shipping class (Manual)
  • Using a Free Shipping Per Product Plugin (Optional)

Method 1: Using Shipping Classes

This is the manual process of doing so. Here, you’ve to use the shipping class to categorize the specific class that is eligible for free shipping.

First, you need to create a shipping class for the specific products that get free shipping. Or, go to WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Classes. 

WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Classes. 

Then, click on “Add shipping class“. Once you click on it, a pop-up will appear. Here, you’ll find the following sections:

  • Shipping class
  • Slug(Optional)
  • Description
Add shipping class

Here is some sample data. You can name the shipping class, slug, and description according to your requirements.

Next, set up your shipping zones. Like you did before, go to WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Shipping Zones. There, just edit or create a shipping zone for your desired locations.

WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Shipping Zones

Now, after setting up the shipping zone, click on “Add shipping method“. There, from the pop-up choose “Flat Rate” and hit on Continue.

Add shipping method

When you edit your chosen shipping method Flat Rate, there will be a section for “Shipping class cost.” This is where you set the cost for the “Free Shipping” class you created. 

Here’s the trick – type in “0” for the cost and hit the Create button. 

Shipping class cost

Click “Save changes” for both the flat rate method and the shipping zone. That way, items labeled “Free Shipping” won’t have any shipping fees.

Now, it’s time to add the specific products to your shipping class (Free shipping). 

To add products in the Free Shipping class, first, head to the Products section and choose the product you want to edit.  

Products section and choose the product you want to edit

Then, look for the “Products” section, which holds all the product’s information.  

look for the "Products" section, which holds all the product's information.  

Within “Product Data,” you’ll find a section called “Shipping.”  Here, you’ll see a dropdown menu labeled “Shipping class.” 

Simply select the shipping class you created for this product. For me, it’s Free shipping. 

In this way, you can add as many products as you want. 

When you’re done adding all your products, click on “Update” to save your changes. Your product now has a clear shipping class.

Bonus Tip: 

You can also create multiple shipping classes for a product if it applies to different categories. You can offer free shipping for orders over a certain amount.

Now, what if you want to set up free shipping in WooCommerce on a single product?

Well, it’s all the same way. Just from Products, select only that single product, and under the Product Data section, add the product to the free shipping class.

Method 2: Using a Free Shipping Per Product Plugin (Optional)

If you want to make the process easier and more automated, there are plugins available that can simplify the process for you. 

And among them, I’ll recommend WooCommerce Free Shipping Per Product.

This plugin offers some additional features like hiding other shipping methods when free shipping is available.

Now, how to set woocommerce free shipping plugin? Here’s a general guideline for using this plugin:

  1.  Install and activate the WooCommerce Free Shipping Per Product plugin on your store’s website. 
  2. Navigate to WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Shipping Zones. 
  3. Choose the shipping zones where you want to offer free shipping on specific products. Pick one zone or many, it’s up to you.
  4. In the plugin settings, you can decide if you want to hide other shipping methods at checkout when free shipping is available. This can help keep things simple for your customers. This is an optional choice.
  1. Create a “Free Shipping” Class. And create a new shipping class.
  2. Now, edit any product you want to offer free shipping on. Look for the “Shipping” section and choose the “Free Shipping” class you just created. 

That’s it! You’re good to sell your products using free shipping for your selected products.

Again, there are some more available plugins you can get to make your free shipping more easy and effective. 

Get the details on this Complete Guide To WooCommerce Shipping Plugin.

How to Set Free Shipping in WooCommerce for Orders Over a Set Amount?

This is how you can get the minimum order amount for free shipping in WooCommerce:

First, go to WooCommerce > Settings > Shipping > Shipping Zones. Then, create a new shipping zone or edit an existing one where you want to offer free shipping over a certain amount.

After creating the zone, add the shipping method. For, shipping methods, select Free Shipping. 

On the free shipping tab, go to the section free shipping requires, and from the drop-down select A minimum order amount.

You’ll find a tab like this picture. Set the minimum order amount there and tick the checkbox under it.

Finally, hit the Save button.

And, you’re done. Now, you can offer free shipping in WooCommerce for orders over a set amount.

How to calculate the minimum order for free shipping?

Setting a minimum order amount for free shipping is a smart way to encourage customers to spend a bit more and make your shipping costs more profitable. Before calculating, let’s go through some related terms of it:

  • Average Order Value (AOV): This is the average amount customers typically spend per order, excluding shipping costs. You can find this data in your online store’s analytics section.
  • Average Shipping Cost:  This is the average cost you pay to ship an order. Consider factors like weight, dimensions, and distance to get a good estimate. 
  • Gross Profit Margin: This is the percentage of profit you make on a sale after accounting for the cost of the product itself. 

To calculate this, subtract the cost of goods sold (COGS) from your total sales and then divide by total sales. 

  • Suggested Minimum Cart Value: This is the minimum amount a customer needs to spend to qualify for free shipping.  Start with a number a bit higher than your average order value.

Now, let’s calculate the minimum order for free shipping:

  1. Find the difference between the Suggested Minimum Cart Value and AOV. This shows you how much customers need to spend extra to reach the free shipping threshold. 
  2. Then, multiply the difference by your Gross Profit Margin. This tells you how much additional profit you’d make per order if customers reached that minimum amount.
  3. Now, subtract the result from your average shipping cost. This shows you how much closer you are to covering your shipping costs with the higher minimum order amount.

Here’s an example:

  • Average Order Value: $40
  • Average Shipping Cost: $5
  • Gross Profit Margin: 40%
  • Suggested Minimum Cart Value: $60

Now,  $60 – $40 = $20 * .4 = $8 – $5 = $3

So, you will get $3 per order.

Every time you offer free shopping on a minimum order, you have to make this calculation first. Make sure you get a positive result from the calculation. 

If the result is negative, you may need to adjust your suggested minimum cart value a bit higher and repeat the calculation.

This is a simplified example, but it gives you a good idea of how to attract customers with free shipping while ensuring it’s profitable for your business.

How to Set Up Free Shipping Coupon in WooCommerce?

Many sellers want to add coupon codes while offering free shipping. In that case, your buyers have to enter that particular coupon to qualify for free shipping. The process of setting up free shipping coupon is as follows:

First, go to WooCommerce, and then, navigate to the Settings option. Then, click on the Shipping tab.

After creating the shipping zone, hit on the Add Shipping Method. There, select free shipping and under the “Free Shipping Requires”.

Here, there are 3 options available for you. 

  • A valid free shipping coupon
  • A minimum order amount OR coupon
  • A minimum order amount AND coupon
Set Up Free Shipping Coupon in WooCommerce

Here, I will select a valid free shipping coupon. Now, click on WooCommerce >> Settings >> General Tab.

woo commerce database update

Now, scroll down a little bit, and you will find the option to Enable the use of Coupon Codes. Make sure the box next to the option is checked. Then, hit the Save Changes button at the bottom.

Now, you’re ready to create your first coupon. For this, go to the left panel and click on Marketing >> Coupons, and then, hit the Create your first coupon option.

Note:

If you have already created some coupons, then, click on Add New at the top.

Once you hit the Create your first Coupon / Add New button, now, you’ve to provide a coupon code it. You can set a code all by yourself, but if you notice, there is a button labeled Generate Coupon Code.

If you hit on it, it’ll automatically generate unique coupon codes for you Like the following.

Bonus Tip:

Though you can generate a unique coupon code from it, the code will be very random with no meaning. It’s better for to you create your coupon code with meaningful data. Like if you’re offering a 25% discount with your coupon, then set the code as “Flat25%” or “Save25%” to highlight the offer to the buyers. It’ll also be highlighted when you do marketing like banners or so media posts.

There is a section for the description of the coupon code. The description is about what you’ll offer with the coupon. However, it’s optional, you can skip this if you want. 

In that case, name the coupon code accordingly so that the buyers can easily understand what you’re going to offer.

Now, expand the Coupon data section here. Under the General tab, you’ve to set the Discount type. There are 3 discount types:

  • Percentage discount: Reduces the total price by a certain percentage.
  • Fixed cart discount: Reduces the total price by a fixed amount, regardless of what items are in the cart.
  • Fixed product discount: Reduces the price of a specific product by a fixed amount.

Now, let’s set up the section:

  • Discount type: As here, I’ve set the coupon Save25%, it’s a percentage coupon. So, I’ll set the coupon type as Percentage coupon.
  • Coupon amount: By default the value is 0, keep it as it is.
  • Allow free shipping: Here, as you offer free shipping along with coupons, you’ve to check the box.
  • Coupon expiry date: Here, you’ve to set the date till when you want to offer the coupon.

Now, under the General tab, move on to the Usage Restriction tab. Here, you can manage your products by including or excluding the coupon offer and adjusting some other criteria.

For better understanding, check out the picture below and set your data accordingly.

Set the last tab, Usage Limit on coupon data. Here, you just have to set the 3 sections according to your offer plan.

 Then, just hit on the publish button at the right panel. Then, click the Update button, and you’re all done.

Now, you can check the coupon you’ve just created.

When your users enter and apply this coupon to the cart, the Free Shipping option will appear to them.

How do I auto-select free shipping if available in WooCommerce?

Sometimes, there is free shipping available, but your buyers are not aware of this offer. In that case, some miscommunication can occur, so auto-selecting free shipping can be the best solution.

To enable automatic free shipping on your WooCommerce store, follow these steps:

1. First, navigate to WooCommerce >> Settings. Then, click on the “Shipping” tab

2. In the shipping settings, you’ve got to choose the zone where you want to enable automatic free shipping.

3. Within the selected shipping zone, click on the shipping method, “Free Shipping.”

4. Now, you need to use a plugin to automatically select the free shipping method based on specific conditions. A popular and trusted choice is the WooCommerce Conditional Shipping and Payments plugin. Follow the on-screen instructions to install and activate the free version.

uto-select free shipping if available in WooCommerce

5. Just download the plugin. The plugin will be downloaded as a zip file. Then, go to your website, and go to Plugin >> Add New Plugin. Now, hit the Upload Plugin button.

6. After selecting Upload Plugin, a tab will open. Click on Choose File and select the downloaded file. 

You can also drag and drop the file into the section. Then, hit Install Now.

7. After installing it, you’ve to activate the plugin.

8. Once activated, go to WooCommerce >> Conditional Shipping & Payments in your WordPress dashboard.

9. In the plugin settings, you’ll find various conditions and rules. Set these conditions to automatically select the free shipping method based on order subtotal, user roles, specific products, or other criteria.

10. Save the changes in the plugin settings.

Now, when you meet the conditions you specified, the free shipping method configured in WooCommerce will be automatically selected during your checkout process. You won’t need to manually choose the free shipping option.

Remember to test the setup thoroughly by placing test orders to ensure that the free shipping method is correctly applied based on the conditions you’ve set.

Bonus Tip:
Now, you’re running a big WooCommerce store and want things to do more automatically. Like the auto-select free shipping method, you can also automatically send an invoice pdf to your customers, showing all the necessary information. 

You don’t have to do anything. 

Just install a freemium plugin Challan to send invoices to your buyers automatically. And the process of printing shipping labels is super easy.

This helps you not only send the data to your buyers but also build trust in your brand. Get it for free!

How to Hide Other Shipping Methods When “Free Shipping” is Available?

WooCommerce typically displays multiple shipping options that fit the customer and cart items. This includes showing free shipping along with a flat rate and other methods.

If you want to hide other options and only display Free Shipping, you can do this in two ways:

  1. Method 1: A custom PHP code
  2. Method 2: A plugin/extension.

Method 1: Add custom code 

This method is free. Here, you just have to upload a custom PHP code in your theme and hide the other shipping method.

For this, first, go to WooCommerce > Status > Tools > WooCommerce Transients > Clear transients 

Add this code to your child theme’s functions.php file.

Note:

Don’t add custom code directly to your parent theme’s functions.php file.  Because this will be wiped out entirely when you update the theme.

Just go to the link below, copy the code, and paste it into your child theme: Code for hiding another shipping method when free shipping is available

or via a plugin that allows custom functions to be added, such as the Code snippets plugin. 

Method 2: A plugin/extension

This method is automated and easier. You don’t have to do anything, just set up the plugin and hide the other shipping ways.

Some of the popular plugins are available here. However, I’ll recommend you 

WC Hide Shipping plugin for this. Hiding other shipping methods when free shipping is available is the free feature of this plugin.

This plugin automatically hides unnecessary shipping options during checkout. When “free shipping” is available, it disappears competing methods. Plus, you can choose to keep “local pickup” as an option alongside free shipping for added flexibility.

Conclusion

Explore the power of free shipping in your WooCommerce store and see your sales soar in 2024! This guide gives you everything you need to get started. I’ve shared surprising stats that show customers really like free shipping and walked you through the easy steps of setting it up. Whether it’s free shipping zones or minimum order amounts, you’re in control to get rid of surprise checkout costs. So, don’t wait. Adopt the free shipping and get ready to turn your WooCommerce store into a customer magnet.

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