Knowledgebase Articles: Shipping Method Reference
A new field named ‘Reference’ has been introduced to the Add Shipping Method and Edit Shipping Method dialog screens in the Control Panel. It’s located above the existing ‘Name’ field.
The Shipping method reference will not be displayed to the customers on the front end.
The main purpose of this field is to hold a value that uniquely identifies a shipping method to a warehouse management system when dealing with an order fulfillment.
Here are some examples of why using a shipping method Reference instead of a Name is more convenient when mapping data into warehouse’s own shipping codes.
1. A shipping method's Name may contain special characters which are acceptable for a front end display to the customers, but may need to be avoided when mapping.
2. Warehouse management system may have their own shipping codes which can be meaningless to the front end customer, therefore they should be stored in the Reference field.
3. If a merchant has several international sites, the same shipping method's Name will be translated into appropriate language and therefore cannot be used for a mapping unless a warehouse maintains a mapping matrix.
4. As shipping method's Name is used for the front end display, its value may change quite frequently which means a warehouse will have to keep updating their mapping.
The following validation rules are applied to the Reference field:
1. The field value is mandatory and must be unique
2. The max field value length is 255 characters
3. The field value is case sensitive
4. Once a shipping method is saved, its reference cannot be edited. A new shipping method will need to be created instead.
A blank shipping method reference will automatically be added to all existing shipping methods created for a shop. When/if you decide to edit an existing shipping method, you will be asked to provide a shipping reference for it.