Meeting customer expectations and delivering times has to be a priority for every eCommerce business to earn customer trust and ensure long-term growth.

AfterShip now supports a Promised Delivery Date option that enables you to promise an order to be shipped or delivered on a specific date.

Once enabled, the promised delivery date will be calculated for all your newly added shipments based on the order cutoff, processing time, and transit time settings.
Merchants can give buyers an “Estimated delivery date” on the order tracking page and shipment notifications to put their minds at ease.

3 quick steps to enable promised delivery date

Find the “promised delivery date” tab in your AfterShip account settings.



Configure the “order cutoff”, “order processing time”, and “transit-time” settings for your shipments as per your convenience.

Enable 'Promised delivery date' to activate the feature.



Note: This feature is only compatible with Shopify stores and for users who have subscribed for AfterShip Trial or paid plans.



How does the promised delivery date feature work?

If the feature is enabled,

The promised delivery date will be calculated based on the general settings that have been configured.
It will be displayed on the AfterShip tracking detail page along with other delivery-related information.



If the courier has not mentioned the estimated delivery date of a shipment, the promised delivery date will be displayed on the order tracking page and delivery notifications as merge tags.





If the courier has mentioned the estimated delivery date, it will be shown.

If the feature is disabled,

The promised delivery date will not show on the order tracking detail page and shipment notifications merge tags.
You will be asked to enable the feature on the order tracking detail page.



Merchants can see it on the tracking detail page if it is provided by the courier but it will not be calculated to add in the tracking updates.

How is the promised delivery date calculated?

The promised delivery date for your orders will be calculated based on the following settings,

Order date
Order cutoff time
Order processing time
Transit time

We will talk about each one of them in detail in a while.

The general formula of computing promised delivery date is as follow,

PDD = Order date + Order cutoff & processing time + Transit time

Let’s take an example,

Say you have set up the promised delivery date rules as follows,

Order cutoff time: 6pm
Additional Processing time: 0 day
Business day: Mon - Fri
Transit time:
- Shipping Zone - America,
- Shipping method - standard
- Shipping time - 3-5 days

Order information is as follows,

Order was placed on 2021-03-01 (1st March 2021), Monday, 10:00 am
Order destination is America and will be delivered via Standard shipping method

So, according to the formula

PDD = Order date + Order cutoff & processing time + Transit time

= (1st March 2021) + 0 (placed before 6 pm, same-day processing) + 0 (no processing days) + (3-5 days shipping time)

= 2021-03-04 - 2021-03-08
(4th March 2021) - (8th March 2021)

Explanation,

If the order is placed on Monday after 6 pm, it will be processed on the same day. The transit time configured is 3-5 days. This means either the product will be delivered either on the 3rd day from 1st March 2021, i.e., 4th March 2021 (Thursday), or on the 5th day from 1st March 2021 i.e., 6th March 2021 (Saturday) which is not possible because merchants only process orders from Monday to Friday. Therefore, the product will be delivered on the next working day i.e., 8th March 2021 (Monday).

What should you know about the general promised delivery date settings?

To arrive at a promised delivery date for an order, few settings must be configured with utmost care. Starting with,

Order cutoff time

It indicates the amount of time you need to process an order.

Note: This may impact the EDD (estimated date of delivery) calculation.

Let’s say that you have set 6:00 p.m. as your order cutoff time,

If customers place an order before 6 p.m., e.g. 3 p.m., then you can process the order on the very same day
If customers place an order after 6 p.m., e.g. 10 p.m., then you can only process the order on the next day



Additional processing time

It refers to the additional working days required to handle order-related work before the dispatch.

Note: This will affect the EDD (estimated delivery of delivery) calculation.

Example: If you set the additional processing time to 1 day, this is how things will work later on

If a customer places an order on Tuesday and before the cutoff time, you can process it on the very same day. But the rest of the procedure will be followed on Wednesday. It means the order will be dispatched on Wednesday, instead of Tuesday.



Business days (store)

It represents the days on which you prefer to process orders.

Note: US holidays will be excluded by default. This could also affect the EDD calculation.



Let’s imagine that you have set your working days from Monday to Friday, then orders placed on the weekend will only be processed on the upcoming Monday.

Transit time

It signifies the time it takes for a shipment to get delivered to its original destination once it is picked up from the designated pick-up point.

You can set the estimated delivery time based on the shipping zone and shipping method.
Once the transit time is configured, AfterShip aligns it with the order’s shipping address and shipping method added in Shopify settings.
The transit time that best suits the order delivery settings will be chosen to calculate the promised delivery date.

Shipping zone

This lets you set the countries, regions, or states of your shipments for which you want to calculate estimated delivery dates.

Note:

You can set up multiple shipping zones under one organization.
For every shipping zone, you can set up multiple transit times based on different shipping methods.



Shipping time

This setting lets you set the estimated shipping time for an order based on the configured shipping zone and method. The promised delivery date will be calculated based on this setting.

You get two options while setting the shipping time.

Specific day

If you select this one, customers will see the exact delivery date after making a purchase.



Date range

If you select this one, customers will learn about the timeframe in which they can expect their order.



Shipping method

This represents the services at the order checkout page that customers choose to have their orders delivered to their doorsteps.

Note: To choose the most suitable transit time rule for your store orders, please make sure the shipping method you are defining for different shipping zones in AfterShip is configured in your Shopify shipping settings as well.



Once your transit time rules are set, save the change and view a new transit time added successfully to the dashboard under the “Setup transit times” tab.

If you still find it difficult to find your way around the feature? Say hello to our support team now 😄
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