This article helps you to ...
Understand the Benefits of an Allocation Strategy
Your Allocation Strategy determines how ShipStation reserves (i.e. allocates) inventory for your Awaiting Shipment orders.
By default, ShipStation allocates inventory for your oldest orders first. But, if you've got reasons to prioritize some orders over others, then it's best to set up a custom allocation strategy with Allocation Tasks that match those priorities.
For example, selling channels like Amazon and eBay penalize merchants who don't ship out orders quickly enough.
Check out this screen capture that shows how to define a custom allocation strategy with an Allocation Task to prioritize Amazon orders:
Your allocation strategy can also have multiple tasks. For example, let's say that you offer expedited shipping across all of your selling channels. The image below shows someone creating a task for their Amazon channel that prioritizes orders with these criteria: a Requested Service for the Marketplace that contains 'Expedited' in the buyer's requested shipping method:
When you're ready to define (or refine) your allocation strategy, follow the steps below to get to the Allocation Strategy editor.
Define or Refine Your Allocation Strategy
1. Go to your Account Settings (the wrench icon in the upper right).
2. Select Inventory Management and then Allocation Strategy from the left-hand sidebar.
3. Click the Prioritize inventory for ... button on the Allocation Strategy page and select an option from the drop-down menu: Orders from a Marketplace, Orders tagged as, Orders older than, or Advanced.
4. Select an Allocation Task for your choice and then establish how to Prioritize it (Oldest Orders, Newest Orders, Highest Order Total, Lowest Order Total).
Hover over any allocation task to reveal Edit and Remove options on the right, and drag tasks around to reorder them. Now that you're at the editor, try out the allocation tasks described above or create your own!
There you have it! Your allocation strategy is now customized to match your fulfillment priorities.
A few things to keep in mind about using allocation:
- All allocation is manually triggered - ShipStation won’t automatically allocate as your orders import.
- Allocation tasks will skip over orders that can only be allocated partially.
- ShipStation does not require you to allocate stock for you to be able to ship orders. Stock will be deducted as you ship, whether stock is allocated or not.