Audience: Retailers

The Dsco platform's Shipping Science feature allows retailers to provide an expected or required delivery date so Dsco can determine the best carrier and method to ensure the order arrives at the customer's door on time and for the least amount of money. To provide ultimate flexibility, Dsco allows you to configure which carriers and methods to include when asking carriers for delivery estimates. You can also set a priority carrier, which will determine the winner in the case of a tie.

To use Shipping Science:

Step 1: Enable the feature in your account settings.

Step 2: Set your trigger value.

Step 3: Choose a default shipping method for each carrier.

Step 4: Configure the allowed carriers and methods for each trading partner.

Then, as orders are created, and if the appropriate trigger is detected on the order, Dsco will initiate Shipping Science logic to determine the best carrier and method, apply that to the order, and then send the order to the supplier for fulfillment.

Important: Your Ship Mapping settings should be completed BEFORE proceeding. For more information, see Ship Mapping.

Expected vs. required vs. promise date

Expected delivery date

The expected delivery date is submitted at the order level, and is used to express when the customer expects to receive the package (on or before this date).

Example: If an expected delivery date of 2020-12-17 is provided, the customer is expecting the order to arrive on or before December 17, 2020.

Required delivery date

The required delivery date is submitted at the order level, and is used to express the exact date when the customer requires the package to arrive (not before or after this date).

Example: If a required delivery date of 2020-02-14 is provided, the customer is expecting the order to arrive on February 14, 2020.

Promise Date

The promise date is set at the account level in the Shipping Science settings. It overwrites the expected or required delivery dates on orders when it is provided. If provided, we will use the promise date on all Shipping Science recommendations. The promise date is similar to expected delivery date, in that it is when the orders are promised to be delivered (on or before this date). The expected or required delivery dates are still required on an order level to trigger Shipping Science.

You can use a promise date for a major holiday, like Christmas. Setting the promise date to December 23 or 24 ensures that all shipments are optimized with a recommended shipping service-level that gets the package to its destination before Christmas.

Setting Up shipping science

Enabling Shipping Science

To enable Shipping Science:

Step 1: Click the navigation menu and select Settings > Shipping Science.

Step 2: Click the Yes radio button to enable Shipping Science.

Important: Your order must include either an expected or required delivery date, as well as your trigger value. See below for more details.

Setting trigger values — required

A trigger value is what causes Dsco to carry out Shipping Science on an order. Trigger values can be either a shipping carrier and method pair or a shipping service-level code. Dsco will look for these values, along with the expected or required delivery date, when determining if it should perform Shipping Science on an order.

You can select one of the following options as your trigger value:

  • NULL/Blank for all three fields: Carrier, Method, and Service Level Code: No trigger value is set.
  • Custom Carrier/Method Pair: Set a custom carrier and method as your trigger value. For example, Carrier = UPS, Method = Generic
  • Custom Service Level Code: Set a custom service-level code as your trigger value. For example, GCG

Setting default shipping methods — required

A default is used for each of the listed carriers when Shipping Science cannot determine a recommendation.

Default shipping methods include:

  • FedEx: Home Delivery
  • UPS: Ground
  • USPS: Ground

The carrier with the highest priority is chosen first. Carrier priority is determined per trading partner in your Shipping Preferences table. See below for more information on the Shipping Preferences table.

You can select a shipping method per carrier from the drop-down menu to overwrite the default shipping method.

Setting a promise date — optional

You may also set a promise date for your orders. An expected or required delivery date and a trigger value are still required to execute the Shipping Science logic. The promise date will overwrite what is sent in the expected or required delivery date fields.

To set a promise date:

Step 1: Click the Yes radio button.

Step 2: Set your promise date.

Step 3: Click Save Changes.

Setting up the shipping preferences table — required

The shipping preferences table includes all the options that have been activated on the Ship Mapping page. If you do not see a carrier/method option you would like Shipping Science to consider, add it to your ship mapping configuration.

Step 1: Click Download. An XLSX file will be downloaded that includes Dsco’s ID and name for your suppliers, your ID and name for each trading partner, and the following fields for you to complete:

  • Processing Lead Time (hrs)
  • Priority (per carrier): Each carrier should have a 1, 2, or 3 (1 being the highest priority).
  • Method (per carrier): Add an X in each field for the method you would like to set for each trading partner.

Step 2: Once you have set your shipping preferences for each trading partner, save your file.

Step 3: Click Upload and select your file to import into the portal.

Step 4: Review your changes and click Save Changes.

Scheduling a shipping preference update — optional

You can schedule updates to the shipping preferences table. This is useful if a holiday or sale is approaching and you would like to edit your offerings so expedited services are available.

Step 1: Click Download. An XLSX file is downloaded. Edit the fields as necessary.

Step 2: Click Schedule An Update.

Step 3: Click Choose File and select your file to import into the portal.

Step 4: Choose the date and time when you would like the changes to take effect.

Step 5: Click Upload File.

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