This content is archived. See latest version here


This document provides an introduction to the Shipping features of EPiServer Commerce. The shipping procedure includes shipping methods, providers and gateways. EPiServer Commerce includes two shipping options/providers which are used by two shipping methods. The shipping model supports multiple shipments per cart and per order. The provider model allows you to also create and incorporate your own shipping providers and methods as well.

Classes referred to here are available in the following namespaces:

Key classes and files

  • Shipment.csrepresents the class in an order for each shipment in the order.
  • ShippingModule.ascx provides an example implementation of using the shipping API to retrieve available shipping methods for user display and calling the shipping provider interface to determine the cost for each shipping method.
  • IShippingGateway.cs is the interface all shipping gateways must implement to be incorporated into ECF.
  • ShippingManager.cs provides access to shipping methods, shipping method cases, package information.
  • CountryManager.cs provides access to the countries defined as shipping jurisdictions.

How it works

  • Each shipment (represented by the Shipment class) contains one or more LineItem references, a shipping address, a shipping method, and a rate. The lineitems, shipping address, and shipping method can all determine the shipping rate.
  • Each shipping method is associated with a shipping option/provider. Shipping providers can be associated with multiple shipping method.
  • The shipping provider contains the logic to use whatever required information is needed (line item properties like weight or size, other order properties, the shipping address, and/or any other properties or external services your implementation includes) to determine the shipping rate for a shipment.
  • Shipping methods contain shipping scenarios representing different pricing for distinct jurisdictions (location which can be as general as a country and specific as a zip code) and shipment weight scenarios.


To retrieve available shipping methods, use the ShippingManager class, GetShippingMethods method. Because shipping methods are specific to a local, the language name needs to be provided when calling this method. An example of the code to retrieve these methods ca be found in the ShippingModule.ascx (BindShippingRates() method).

The ShippingModule.ascx provides an example of retrieving and displaying the available shipping methods for a cart with the associated rates:

ShippingMethodDto methods = ShippingManager.GetShippingMethods(SiteContext.Current.LanguageName);

The ShippingMethodDto typed dataset provides several tables that are useful for different aspects of shipment option display:

  • ShippingMethod - contains a row of data for each shipping method. This contains data displayed in the Overview tab of Commerce Manager and the IDs for the shipping methods.
  • ShippingCountry - contains a row for each restricted country associated for a particular shipping method.
  • ShippingRegion - contains a row for each restricted state or region for a particular shipping method.
  • ShippingPaymentRestriction - contains a row for each payment type restricted for a particular shipping method.
  • ShippingMethodCase - contains a row of data for each particular shipping rate scenario for a particular shipping method. See the method Parameters tab of the Default Shipping method to see the type of data stored.
  • ShippingOption - contains a row of data for each particular shipping option/provider. This information can be viewed on the Overview tab of a shipping provider's definition.

A shipping method can also be restricted to not be available to configured restricted countries and regions/states associated with the shipping method. In addition, a shipping method can be restricted for certain types of payment. To match, for example, a country from a shipping address with the restricted countries associated with a shipping method, you need to know the IDs of the shipping country. To retrieve this information, use the CountryManager.

Example: retrieve country shipping ID

CountryDto country = CountryManager.GetCountry(OrderAddress.CountryCode, true);
            if (country.Country != null && country.Country.Rows.Count > 0)
                shippingCountryId = country.Country[0].CountryId;
                countryFound = true;

The CountryManager also returns regions. Regions map to either an addresses State or RegionCode properties.

Example: iterating through a shipping method's restricted countries

//first check the restricted countries
            ShippingMethodDto.ShippingCountryRow[] paymentCountryRestrictions = method.GetShippingCountryRows();
            if (paymentCountryRestrictions != null && paymentCountryRestrictions.Length > 0)
                foreach (ShippingMethodDto.ShippingCountryRow restrictedCountryRow in paymentCountryRestrictions)
                    if (restrictedCountryRow.CountryId == shippingCountryId)
                        isRestricted = true;

To retrieve the shipping rate for a shipping method, given the order's address and items in the cart, you need to call the shipping provider's GetRate method. This is required by the IShippingGateway, an interface all shipping providers must implement.

Example: retrieving the shipping rate for each available shipment method with a particular cart

foreach (ShippingMethodDto.ShippingMethodRow row in shippingRows)
            //The ShippingMethodDto maintains relationships between rows. This means that a ShippingMethodRow contains
            //a reference to the parent shipping option/provider row. This allows us to retrieve the class name
            //for the shipping provider so that we can instantiate an instance of the provider and execute the
            //GetRate method for a particular cart.
            Type type = Type.GetType(row.ShippingOptionRow.ClassName);
            if (type == null)
                throw new TypeInitializationException(row.ShippingOptionRow.ClassName, null);

            string message = String.Empty;
            IShippingGateway provider = (IShippingGateway)Activator.CreateInstance(type);

            //now we retrieve all of the line items in the cart which are associated with the same shipping address
            List<LineItem> items = new List<LineItem>();
            foreach(LineItem lineItem in CartHelper.LineItems)
                if(lineItem.ShippingAddressId == shipmentAddress.Name.ToString())

            //now call the GetRate method to retrieve the rate for this shipment
            if (items.Count > 0)
                ShippingRate rate = provider.GetRate(row.ShippingMethodId, items.ToArray(), ref message);

Last updated: Mar 31, 2014