Why Charge Shipping

Why Charge Shipping

Posted by Phil Richman on Jun 19th 2023

"Free Shipping" is mainly a marketing ploy... someone is paying for it.  The costs of the shipping are built into the price of the items, and "Free Shipping" can actually be a more expensive way to purchase.

When an online seller (including The Plumbing Mall) lists a product for sale, we use all of the costs of purchasing, packaging and delivering that product into consideration when we calculate a sale price.  We ship our products from our warehouse in southern Indiana, so we will usually calculate shipping to somewhere on the northwest coast (to cover the highest probable shipping).  This, of course, means that our neighboring states would pay a higher shipping rate when they purchase that product.

The days of adding up the weights of all items in the order to get a shipping rate are long gone.  All common carriers (UPS, FedEx and USPS included) use the dimensions of the package to obtain rates.  So a package that weighs 50 pounds but is in a 12x12x12 box will be substantially less to ship than a package that weighs 5 pounds in a 24x24x24 box.

Beause of the dimensional weight factor, "Free Shipping" can increase overall costs by an even larger margin when ordering multiple items.  For example, a D-Box that you purchase from us may weight 4 pounds and be 11"x11"x15" in size and cost $15.00 to ship.  If you buy 10 of them and it is a "Free Shipping" item, you will pay the $15.00 used to calculate shipping ten times, making the amount you paid $150.00.  

In reality, these D-Boxes can "nest" together, so instead of shipping ten separate 4 pound, 11x11x15 packages @ $15.00 each... we would ship one 40 pound, 11x11x35 package.  The shipping rate would be substantially less for the single package than for the 10 individual packages.

The only caveat is that shopping carts have a hard time determining which dimensions to add together, and of course they have no way of knowing which products will "nest" together or how they will fit.  Because of this, shipping rates can sometimes be miscalculated on orders that contain multiple products. 

If the shipping rate on your order seems excessive, please email us at Plumbing Mall Customer Support with the list of products you are wanting to purchase.  We will calculate the actual shipping rate and send you a coupon for the difference.  Don't forget to include your zip code!