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Despatching orders and the Shipping screen

Tradebox is able to mark orders as despatched for any channel we have an API connection with (Amazon, BigCommerce, eBay, EKM, Magento). It’s not possible to mark as despatched for any marketplace we process via file import or for Amazon FBA, and orders through these channels won’t appear in Shipping.

Note – to mark as despatched for Amazon channels, you’ll first need to set your defaults for Carrier Codes. If you choose Other, you’ll also need to set your Carrier Names. You’ll be prompted for these during the new channel wizard, or you can amend them on an existing channel via Channels > Edit > Details.

Marking as despatched is a process that involves two-way communication between the marketplace and Tradebox. It’s also a duplication of a function that you could complete yourself in the marketplace; you might run into issues if you attempt to mark an order as despatched via the marketplace and then try to despatch that same order via Tradebox, so we recommend you either despatch all orders yourself via the marketplace or despatch all orders via the Tradebox interface.

Valid for despatch

If the order is shown as paid on the marketplace, Tradebox will assign it a Paid status after downloading the order. This means it’s a valid order for despatch and will be visible in Shipping. If the order has a Query status, you’ll need to action the query first and then change the status to Paid to make it valid for despatch.

If you change TB status of any order to Complete, Tradebox assumes the order has been despatched, so it won’t appear in the Shipping screen.

Note – if you’ve already marked an order as shipped yourself on the marketplace, change the TB order status to Complete within the Orders screen. You don’t want to mark as despatched again via Tradebox as this may impact your time-to-ship performance on the marketplace.

The despatch process

In the Shipping screen, by default you’ll see any orders from the last 7 days that are valid for despatch. You can view older orders by changing the filter at the top of the screen; be aware that some marketplaces will penalise sellers for taking too long to ship.

The Shipping Method is populated with the method provided by the marketplace at the point of download. Normally this will have been set by the seller or been chosen by the customer. The drop-down in this column allows you to select a different shipping method.

Note - the shipping method drop-down for eBay displays a list of all the shipping methods that eBay makes available by their API. This list may not be exhaustive. To make it easier to parse the list, you can filter to UK Methods Only or Top 10 Methods (populated from previously-used methods for all existing orders through that sales channel).

To mark for despatch, select one or more orders via the tickbox and click Despatch. The TB status will automatically change to Scheduled For Despatch. The products on the order will have been in an allocated state until now, at this point the adjustment out will be posted and reduce the quantity in stock within Tradebox.

Your work with the order is now done and the Tradebox Service takes over. When the service reaches the next point in its loop of checking for despatch orders, it will make a call to the marketplace to let it know which orders to mark as despatched.

Part-despatching

It’s also possible to part-despatch orders within the Shipping screen. Double click the order and you’ll see the item lines. Amend the Qty. To Despatch by overtyping the figure, then click OK. When you click Despatch, the TB status will change to Part Despatched. Tradebox will then make the API call and pass the relevant quantities to the marketplace. The order remains in the Shipping screen until all items have been despatched, at which point it acts as a full despatch would.

Tracking Number

If you input a tracking number for an order in the Shipping screen, this will also be passed to the marketplace (eBay, Amazon, BigCommerce) when the order is despatched. EKM/Magento do not offer tracking numbers.

How is the call made?

For eBay, BigCommerce and Magento we make an API call to mark the order as shipped/despatched.

EKM’s API only gives the option to change status of the order, which we change to despatched. There are background processes that would happen when a user manually changes the status (e.g. sending a confirmation email to the customer); changing status by API does not initiate these processes. If you require automatic email confirmation or any other processes triggered by despatch, we recommend you complete the process yourself via EKM and don’t use Tradebox to mark as despatched.

For Amazon, we create an XML file which is automatically sent to, and read by, Amazon’s system. As this contains all relevant order information in one file, you may notice a delay while the file is created in which the service does not appear to be active. Once the file is created and pushed to Amazon, their guidelines state it may take up to 2 hours to be processed. Orders on other marketplaces are marked as despatched order-by-order so you should be able to see the effects fairly quickly.

Troubleshooting

Orders scheduled for despatch will automatically change TB status to Despatched once the Tradebox Service has completed its loop and made the call to the marketplace. If you encounter orders being stuck with a TB status of Scheduled For Despatch, check the following:

  • In Logs > Process, you can see the operation the service is currently working on. Make sure you wait until it's completed at least one full loop of operations.
  • Maintenance > User List > Make sure the user TBSUPPORT is not logged in. If it is, remove it from the user list.
  • In the Channels screen make sure the relevant channel is Active. Deactivated channels are ignored by the service and won’t despatch.
    • If you don’t want to currently download orders or upload stock levels but do want to mark orders as despatched: Activate the channel > edit the channel by double-clicking > make sure Download Orders and Upload Stock Levels are unticked > Save.
  • Make sure the Service is running. Closing both the main Tradebox UI and the Tradebox Data Service, then re-launching the main UI will force the service to restart, which may resolve the issue.

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