Configure 3PL Shipping

After connection has been granted between Client accounts and a ShipStation 3PL account, Client's orders can now import into the 3PL Orders grid, alongside any orders created by the 3PL. Clients will need to send any orders they wish to be fulfilled by the 3PL via the Configure Shipment Widget in ShipStation. Once the order imports onto their grid, the 3PL will use this same widget to configure the order for shipment.


We highly recommend that 3PL accounts AND Client accounts both enable the auto-update feature for the stores to alleviate the need to use the manual import too frequently. Learn how to set store to auto-update.

Access the Configure Shipping Widget in either the Orders grid shipping sidebar, or in the Order Details screen (to open the Order Details, either click an order number or double-click the order in the grid).

Send Order to a 3PL

To delegate an order to a 3PL, you must have at least one Ship From Location set up.


Order items must include an SKU to be sent to a 3PL for fulfillment.

Follow these steps if you are a Client sending an order to a 3PL for fulfillment:

  1. Go to the Configure Shipment Widget (either in the Orders grid Shipping Sidebar or the Order Details screen).

  2. Select as your Ship From location the 3PL you would like to fulfill the order. Then, select the service you would like to use.

    This list shows a set of preferences that give you the ability to define the time frame you want for the order's shipping, without being specific on the service.

    Your 3PL may use this information when picking a specific shipping service for the order. If you don’t have a preference, you can select Requested Shipping Method, and that will send the 3PL the service that the customer chose from the checkout when they placed the initial order.

    The service options will appear as the following:

  3. Click the green Send Shipment button to send the order to the 3PL.

    This will place the order into a Pending Fulfillment status, viewable from the left sidebar. Orders that are in the Pending Fulfillment status mean the 3PL is in the process of picking, packing or placing the package on a truck for shipment. To avoid conflicting with this process, Clients cannot cancel orders in this status.

    If you have wrongfully sent your order to Pending Fulfillment and would like to ship this yourself, please contact support.

Automatically Delegate Orders to a 3PL

Clients can automate the delegation of orders to a 3PL by creating an Automation Rule.

Go to Settings > Automation > Automation Rules and create a new rule. The rule can apply for every order that is imported or just orders that match specific criteria.

Select Action Type :: Set Fulfillment Provider. Select the fulfillment provider in the Ship From drop-down and select the Service you wish to apply.

Then, be sure to check the box "Automatically send fulfillment request to provider" and save the rule.


Learn more about how to use Automation actions.

Configure Shipment Widget

3PL's Configure Shipping

Follow these steps if you are a 3PL preparing a Client order for shipping.

  1. Go to the Configure Shipment Widget (either in the Orders grid, Shipping sidebar, or the Order Details screen).

  2. Select the service from the Service drop-down for the order.

    This will show a list of the Client services available to use, as well as your own connected service. You can elect to use the Client’s carrier services or your own. You can see which service the Client requested at the top of the Configure Shipment Widget.


    Carriers Available During 3PL Provider Bundle Beta Launch

    During the beta period of ShipStation’s 3PL Provider Bundle, 3PLs can enable the use of a Client’s carrier accounts. Whichever Client carrier accounts the 3PL enables will be displayed in the carriers list on an order whether or not the Client uses those carriers.

    If a 3PL selects a Client carrier during order fulfillment that is not available from that Client, the 3PL account will receive an error message. 3PLs can also use their own carrier accounts, if necessary.

    Future phases of the 3PL Provider Bundle will refine the carriers and services to show only those that the Client uses.

  3. Click Create + Print Label to purchase the label.

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3PL Provider Bundle Beta Limitations

  • The ShipStation 3PL Provider Bundle is only available on the latest version for ShipStation (V3).

  • To share carrier accounts, both client and 3PL need to be US-based.

  • For clients sending shipments to a 3PL via Automation Rules, we recommend that you import orders at least once a day to avoid missing any incoming orders from your store. Learn how to set your stores to auto-update for regular importing.

  • For 3PLs, automation rules cannot be set using the Brand column during the beta period of the 3PL Provider Bundle.

  • Clients cannot view Inventory counts for 3PLs who use ShipStation Inventory.

  • 3PLs need to create separate ShipFrom addresses for each client with the client’s appropriate return address on it. ShipFrom addresses do not inherit the brand company name for an order.

  • If a 3PL cancels a client’s order, the client is not notified of the cancellation. The order will stay in Pending Fulfillment on the client account.

  • If a 3PL voids a label, and/or if another label is printed after the first voided order, the client is not notified of the voided or new label.

  • Only one carrier account can be used per client. For example: if a client has two FedEx accounts, only the primary account will be connected and used when shipping from the 3PL ShipStation Account.

  • USPS First Class Mail displays incorrect rates on the Order grid, however, once a label is generated, it will show the correct rate for which you will be charged.

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