EasyPost - Process a Shipment (Sales Order Fulfillment)

This feature requires additional licensing. Please contact AcctVantage Sales for a quote.

This article describes creating an Easypost shipment for an associated Sales Order/Invoice.  For a shipment not associated with an order, please refer to Shipping without a Sales Order

EasyPost is a service that provides live access, via an internet based API, to your shipping carrier accounts. This allows AcctVantage to provide integrated shipment processing without relying on export/import or file transfer between AcctVantage and other software. It also means that you can ship with any of your carrier accounts directly from the AcctVantage interface.

As of May 2017, EasyPost charges $0.03 per label for shipping, tracking and address verification. There are no monthly, setup or other fees associated with the service. No part of the label fee goes to Beckware/AcctVantage.

Shipments vs. Parcels

  • A Parcel is a single package (e.g. box, envelope, pallet, etc.)
  • A Shipment is a collection of one or more Parcels.

Per the definitions above:

  • Each Sales Order may have any number of Shipments associated with it.
  • Each Shipment will always include at least one Parcel (*and may include multiple Parcels.)
  • Each Parcel will have a unique shipping label and tracking number.

*Multi-parcel shipments are only supported for domestic shipments. International shipments support one parcel per shipment.

Accessing the Shipment Screen

When shipping a Sales Order, there are a few ways to access the Shipment screen:

  1. Sales module > Sales Orders & Quotes
  2. Sales module (or Warehouse Management) > Pick Pack

Sales Order (items tab)

Sales Order - Items tab

Sales Order (shipping tab)

Sales Order - Shipping tab

Sales (or Warehouse Management) > Pick Pack screen

When accessing the Pick Pack process, you can select either the New Shipment process or the Order Picking process window to open as the default.  

See Administration > System Configuration, Pick Pack preferences.

Warehouse Management module

Processing a Shipment

Shipment screen

1. Client & Invoice Information

The information on the Client row allows the user to verify which Order/Invoice is being processed. Typically this would be verified against a printed Pick Ticket prior to shipping.

2. Ship To

The Ship To address information is pulled from the Bill To/Ship To tab of the Sales Order. If you've chosen Address Verification in System Setup, the Ship To address will be normalized via EasyPost and the USPS address verification service.

When entering addresses for International shipments, if you don't know the state or province to use, enter the 2-digit country code in place of the state. When Easypost verifies the address, the proper code should be returned.

If EasyPost can not verify the address, you will receive an alert stating so. However, the system will let you generate a shipping label to a non-verifiable Ship To address. It's a best practice to confirm the address is correct before purchasing the label!

3. Carrier

The Carrier menu allows you to select which carrier (e.g. UPS, FedEx, USPS, etc.) you would like to return rates for.  If All Carriers is selected then you will get rates from each carrier account that is connected to your Easypost account.

4. Parcel Details

Predefined Packages vs. Manual Entry

The Predefined Packages menu allows you to select the specific box that you are using for shipment.  Refer to the EasyPost Setup article for details on populating this list.

If you are using a box that is not in the list, select Manual Entry, then enter the box dimensions into the Length, Width and Height fields.

Set your default package in Administration > System Setup on the Shipping tab.  All new Shipments will then default to the package you use most often!

Predefined packages

Add Parcel

After entering the dimensions for the first Parcel, you can click the Add Parcel tab in order to add more than one package to the current Shipment.

Click the All tab to see a list of all Parcels contained in the Shipment. Use the trash can icon to remove Parcels from the Shipment.

Edit Parcel Contents allows you to edit the contents of the current parcel. See the instructions for the Parcel Contents Editor if you want to manage the individual items contained in each parcel.

All packages

5. Weight

Before getting rates, you must indicate a package weight for each Parcel.  Package weight can be entered by the user or can be read via a connected scale. Notice the small scale icon above the weight field. That icon is used to select your connected scale. For more information on connecting a scale, please refer to the EasyPost Connected Scales article.

Select your scale source from the drop-down menu.  This will either be a Serial Port or the PrintNode API.  Computer ID is only required when using the PrintNode API.  Scale selection will be remembered and the last scale selected becomes the default for the shipping station.

If your scale is connected via the PrintNode API, you will need to enter the Printnode ID for the computer where the scale is attached.  

This is "sticky", meaning that AcctVantage will remember the computer's ID and default to your USB scale until you change the selection.

Printnode computer ID

6. Ship Via & Tracking Number

The Ship Via is pulled from the Sales Order entry screen.  

  • If a matching Carrier and Service are found in the rates list when you click Get Rates, then AcctVantage will highlight that rate by default. However, the user is not restricted to only using that rate - any Carrier/Service may be selected prior to clicking Ship Package.
  • If a matching Carrier and Service are found in the rates list when you click Get Rates & Ship Package, then AcctVantage will automatically purchase the label for that option.

The Tracking Number is filled in by AcctVantage after the Shipment has been processed.

7. Charges

The various charges represent what you will add to your invoice to the customer.

The Freight Charge does NOT represent your cost for the shipment!  In the EasyPost Setup, you will determine what rate you want to bill your customer, or if you want AcctVantage to use these shipping rates at all.

Insurance, Handling and Accessorial charges are add on fees that can be assessed manually or via custom script.

8. Label Printer

The printer selection menu is "sticky", meaning that the system will remember your last selection and treat that as the default. Generally speaking, unless you have selected Print Preview or Print Settings as your default, labels will be generated without the user having to click through any dialogs.

Select a Printer

9. Shipment Label

This is another "sticky" selection.  The label that was selected most recently is your the default selection. In AV 2020, these labels are Custom Forms that can be edited by your system Administrator.  New formats can be added at any time via the Administration > Custom Forms process.

In older versions of AcctVantage, some of the labels in this list are hard-coded.

Select a Label

The image below is an 8.5 x 11" sheet incorporating a 4x6" label with integrated packing slip and is available from AV Support. A library of downloadable shipping label formats is available here: EasyPost Label Templates

Packing Slip with Shipping Label

How to Complete the Shipment

Now that you know the definitions above, you can complete the shipment. There are two different ways to finalize purchasing and printing the shipping label.

  1. Get Rates first and then Ship Package (in two steps) -- If you want more control, use this option.
  2. Get Rates & Ship Package (in one step) -- If you want more automation, use this option.

Go to Administration > System Setup, use the drop-down menu to select Sales Document. Find the setting Ship: Default Get Rate Button to determine which button is "active" by default, Ship Package or Get Rates & Ship Package. Whichever button is "active" will be tied to the Enter key.

10. Get Rates and Ship Package (in two steps)

10.1. Get Rates

Once you've entered package dimensions and weight, you can click the Get Rates button to generate a list of service options. In this manner, the user can review the rates and available services before processing the shipment.

  • You can use the Carrier menu to select a single carrier (or All Carriers) and click the Get Rates button as often as you like prior to generating your label.
  • If your Ship Via matches an available service, that service will be highlighted by default.
  • Clicking on a different service will change the selection to that service.
  • The values for Days (in transit) and ETA Date are provided by the carrier; some carriers do not provide this information.
  • Use the Clear Rates button to reset the list of available services.

You don't need to use your mouse!  If you have a scale connected, are using the default package and default service, all you need to do is tap the Enter key after the screen opens!  Verify the rate and tap Enter again to Ship Package and print your label!

10.2. Ship Package

The Ship Package button will activate after you've clicked on Get Rates and then highlighted a service.

Once you've verified the address and selected a service, selecting Ship Package initiates the purchase of your shipping label and generates the tracking number.  At that point, the details of the Shipment become "locked." You have now purchased the label.

11. Get Rates & Ship Package (in one step)

If the Get Rates & Ship Package option is selected the User can process a shipment in a single click. This option will immediately process a shipment and print the label for the default Ship Via, skipping the user waiting for rates to be returned, selected and processed.

12. The label has now been purchased

After the label has been printed:

  • You will be charged for the label. This fee is subject to the terms of your Easypost account.
  • Fees for the actual shipment are subject to the carrier's terms. Per Easypost's docs:
    • Carriers such as FedEx, UPS and DHL Express operate on a bill on scan model of billing. This means that you are not charged by the carrier until you hand the package over to them and it is scanned. Once this occurs the package has entered the mail stream and your account will be charged accordingly.
    • The USPS operates on a prepaid postage billing method. With this model you will be charged for the postage when you create the label.
  • Some of the buttons will be disabled (e.g. Clear Rates, Get Rates, Get Rates & Ship Package, Ship Package).

There are also now some new functions:

  • Reprint Label: This will reprint a label for the current shipment.
    • You can choose any label format or printer.
    • There will not be any additional charge for reprinting a label that has already been purchased.
  • Void Shipment: This function will process a cancellation of the service. Voiding shipments is subject to each carrier's terms.
  • Parcel Details:
    • Tracking Number: Each shipped parcel now has a clickable tracking link in blue. Click the link to open Easypost's tracking page in your default web browser.
    • Label: Each shipped parcel also now has a direct link to Easypost's URL for the label. Click the label icon to open the label URL in your default web browser. You can reprint or save a copy of the label from there.
    • Contents: For each shipped parcel, you will see either a value of "Set" (if you chose the option to define parcel's contents) or "Not Set" (if you did not define the parcel's contents).
  • Return Labels:  Click the Return Labels tab (at the top of the window) to purchase and print a return label for any of the previously-shipped parcels. You can print the return label even before the carrier picks up the package. This would be handy if you want to include a return label inside the package you are shipping.
Shipping screen - label already purchased