Shipping Bikes with SmartEtailing

Configure your shipping methods to align with brand policies and your business strategy.

A select few bike brands have temporarily adjusted their policies to allow retailers to ship assembled bikes to consumers. This rapid shift may open up new opportunities for your business. If you choose to ship bikes, we outline a configuration of your shipping methods.

Your Options

It is uncertain whether you will be permitted to ship assembled bicycles to consumers for a prolonged period of time. Therefore you should choose one of the following options to meet your known short term needs.

  1. Create a distinct shipping method for bikes
  2. Allow free shipping on bikes
  3. Don’t ship bikes

This article was created as a part of our COVID-19 rapid response strategy. We continue to explore options to provide you with more flexibility and control for shipping bicycles.

Create a Distinct Shipping Method for Bikes

Based on our most common configuration request from clients, we’ve summarized an option for how to configure a shipping rule to accommodate bikes.

The consumer will need to select “Bikes over $1,000 Ship FREE” during checkout in order for the shipping rule to apply. There will be clear visibility on their choices, but this will be a distinctly different shipping option for consumers which they will need to select during checkout.

  1. Check your brand settings for each brand you can ship.
    1. Many brands are working with us directly to make their bikes shippable across our platform.
    2. Only modify brands that aren't already set to ship through our system-wide settings.
  2. Create a new shipping method called ‘Bikes Over $1,000 SHIP FREE!’.
    1. Select a dollar amount that suits your business and name your discount accordingly.
    2. Position this method at the top of your list of methods so the consumer sees this option first.
    3. Create the following rules within the method.
      Rule 1 - $.01 - $999.99 charges $150.00 (you choose thresholds)
      Rule 2 - $1,000 - $999,999 charges $0 shipping

Do not add any weight-based rules to this bikes-only shipping method. Doing so could cause unintentional shipping charges for your customers.

Most retailers offer free shipping on accessory purchases over a certain amount, commonly $49, $79, or $99.

Other considerations

  • You may need prior approval from a brand to ship bikes, please contact your brand partners with questions.
  • Your regular ground shipping methods used for non-bike orders should have at least one weight-based rule as a backstop for large or heavy items.
    • This helps to ensure customers choose the correct method for their purchase.

Allow Free Shipping on Bikes

This option may fit your business if you believe that having a second shipping method just for bikes will impede your ability to convert sales using the process we outlined above.

As of the writing of this article, the three largest bicycle suppliers in the US are offering free local delivery (home or in-store) on bikes ordered online. This is consistent with what consumers will find ordering directly from Canyon or from a pure e-commerce store like Jenson USA.

We understand that free shipping on a sub-$1000 bike will negatively impact your profitability on the sale, as opposed to the same offer on a $5,000 bike. As undesirable as this may be for your business, offering free shipping can help you close sales online, and put your sales team in a position to up-sell.

Don't Ship Bikes

For many shops, it is impractical to overcome the complexity of shipping assembled bikes for an uncertain amount of time. Until more is known about the duration of relaxed policies towards shipping is known, choosing to not ship bikes could be your best option while you focus on other opportunities.