FedEx shipping plugin returning incorrect rates

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9 months 1 week ago #284563

-- HikaShop version -- : 3.2.1
-- Joomla version -- : 3.8.1
-- PHP version -- : 7.0.26
-- Browser(s) name and version -- : any

FedEx shipping plugin seems to be returning incorrect rates, but only on some of our products. Products all have correct weights and dimensions entered (most are about 51 lbs, 24"x14"x15") but on the ones with a 24 lbs weight and dimensions of 45"x18"x8" the FedEx plugin quotes a rate that is about half what it should be according to the FedEx website shipping rate calculator (and according to experience). I am absolutely certain that units of measure for weight and dimensions are the same in all products (pounds and inches). I'm not even sure what to try next in order to isolate the problem further. Thank you for your assistance.

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9 months 6 days ago #284602

Hello,

Please provide details regarding your Fedex shipping plugin configuration (screenshot).

Regards,


Jerome - Obsidev.com
HikaMarket & HikaSerial developer / HikaShop core dev team.

Also helping the HikaShop support team when having some time or couldn't sleep.
By the way, do not send me private message, use the "contact us" form instead.

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9 months 6 days ago #284616

Screenshot attached...

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9 months 5 days ago #284636

Hello,

Changing the value of "Packaging type" and "Group packages" options will probably help you change the rate returned from the FedEx platform.
Else, note that the FedEx shipping plugin will only :
- Send shipping and product information about your customer's order to the FedEx platform
- Display shipping methods prices returned by the FedEx platform.

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9 months 3 days ago #284830

In my case, choosing any packaging type other than "Your packaging" yields error messages indicating that the chosen package type will not accommodate the weight/dimensions of our product. (24 lbs and 45x18x8 inches is our lightest product.)

Additionally, selecting "Group packages" does not repair the incorrect rate. We would not try to use this option in any case since the smallest package we ship is 51 lbs and 27x14x15 inches - far too heavy and large to be combined with anything else.

I understand that the FedEx plugin will only send product info and return prices. This is all I want it to do, but in this regard it appears to be failing, at least in my case.

In general, we only have three product types with standard weights/dimensions for each:
Guitars: 24 lbs. / 45x18x8 inches volume
Amp heads: 51 lbs. / 27x14x15 inches volume
Amp combos: 58 lbs. / 24x14x21 inches volume

The amps are having the correct prices returned from FedEx, but the guitars are not. In my testing it looks like the dimension settings for the guitars are having no effect whereas on the FedEx website dimension settings for a 24 lb package change the resulting price dramatically. As far as I can tell, the plugin seems to assume the smallest possible package size.

I have noticed that if I enter "100" in the weight approximation field the prices returned for guitars are correct, but for amps they are now doubled and incorrect. Entering "100" for each field in the "Dimension approximation" area doesn't change anything from having nothing entered for any of the weight or dimension approximation fields. This all seems rather random and the HikaShop documentation doesn't make it very clear how these fields are intended to be used.

Please advise.

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9 months 2 days ago #284855

Hello,

I have noticed that if I enter "100" in the weight approximation field the prices returned for guitars are correct, but for amps they are now doubled and incorrect. Entering "100" for each field in the "Dimension approximation" area doesn't change anything from having nothing entered for any of the weight or dimension approximation fields. This all seems rather random and the HikaShop documentation doesn't make it very clear how these fields are intended to be used.


If you are having correct rates based on how you configured your FedEx shipping method, the solution will probably be to created 1 FedEx shipping method per product types using warehouses.
You'll just have to create 1 warehouse and FedEx shipping method per product type and assign that warehouse.

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9 months 1 day ago #284949

The solution you have suggested sounds feasible, but with hundreds of products it will create a good bit of extra setup work along with an increased potential for human errors. I have already had to create multiple instances of the FedEx plugin in order to overcome problems with the language output from it so what you are suggesting will just add to that complexity. Seems like any product type we add in the future will require extra testing and perhaps extra warehouse setups, extra FedEx instances, etc. - could get pretty cumbersome.

Is there no way to actually address the problem? As far as I can tell the issue is that the plugin is ignoring dimensions when sending information to FedEx (or is it FedEx ignoring the dimension info?).

My client wants a professional solution rather than something that seems cobbled together with band-aids (his words). Can you let me know what our options are for getting to a fully robust solution for this issue?

Many thanks!

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8 months 4 weeks ago #285018

Hello,

The solution you have suggested sounds feasible, but with hundreds of products it will create a good bit of extra setup work along with an increased potential for human errors.


You won't have any issue by correctly using mass actions and it won't take you a lot of time :
www.hikashop.com/support/documentation/167-massaction-form.html

Is there no way to actually address the problem? As far as I can tell the issue is that the plugin is ignoring dimensions when sending information to FedEx (or is it FedEx ignoring the dimension info?).


I just checked it on my end, and when the "Use dimension" option is checked trough your FedEx shipping configuration page, dimensions are correctly sent to the FedEx shipping platform.

So in your case the best solution will probably to :
- Use the "Debug" mode option through the FedEx shipping configuration page to see what's sent to and returned from the FedEx shipping platform
- Directly contact FedEx to have more information about it.

Best regards,
Mohamed Thelji

Last Edit: 8 months 4 weeks ago by Mohamed Thelji.

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8 months 3 weeks ago #285131

Thank you for filling me in on mass actions - that will be very useful.

Regarding the issue of the FedEx plugin appearing to ignore dimensions when sending information to FedEx, I was able to confirm this during a lengthy phone call to a FedEx integration specialist. You are correct about the fact that when "use dimensions" is checked in the plugin interface that the dimensions show up in the code that is viewable in debug mode. However, according to the FedEx integration specialist that code has to be converted by the plugin to XML before being sent to FedEx. It is during that conversion that the dimensions appear to be getting dropped. The FedEx integration specialist sent me a text file of the XML received by the plugin and an example of what it SHOULD look like. I have attached both to this thread. It is clear when examining these files that the FedEx plugin is NOT sending dimensions to FedEx.

FedEx calculates rates based on what is called "dimensional weight" (in pounds/inches: length x width x height divided by 139). If the resulting number is more than the actual package weight then that is the weight that is used for the shipping rate calculations. By failing to send the dimensions to FedEx the plugin will return incorrect rates in all cases where the package dimensions are fairly large (this is the case with most of what our business ships).

To all HikaShop users: The workaround for this problem would seem to be to enter the dimensional weight for all your products, rather than the actual weight (unless the dimensional weight is LESS than the actual weight, in which case the actual weight should be used).

To HikaShop: Thank you for your suggestions and your response times, though they led to some dead ends and lost time they are appreciated. It does seem to me that the FedEx plugin, both in its documentation and its functionality is not up to the level of the rest of HikaShop. If it would be possible, I hope you will respond to this thread when/if you ever correct the issues with this plugin so I will know to back out of my workarounds.

And of course, if you don't agree with my assessment or the analysis provided by the FedEx integration specialist please let me know.

Many thanks.

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8 months 3 weeks ago #285257

Hello,

However, according to the FedEx integration specialist that code has to be converted by the plugin to XML before being sent to FedEx. It is during that conversion that the dimensions appear to be getting dropped. The FedEx integration specialist sent me a text file of the XML received by the plugin and an example of what it SHOULD look like. I have attached both to this thread. It is clear when examining these files that the FedEx plugin is NOT sending dimensions to FedEx.


Thank you for your feedback, we actually made a small modification of the code which was retrieving the products weight/dimensions.

Can you download the last Hikashop version through our website, install it and test it again ? Thank you.

Ps : Sorry for the late reply, we can't actually reply as quick we usually do as it was Christmas holidays.

Best regards,
Mohamed Thelji.

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7 months 2 weeks ago #287374

I am about to implement the Fedex shipping plugin so thank you arinehart for taking some of the pain. Do you have this working correctly now?

Thanks,

Ian

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7 months 2 weeks ago #287388

In regards to your question, yes, I have the FedEx shipping plugin working now but only by using dimensional weights because the plugin was not correctly sending dimension information to FedEx. Here is an FAQ that includes some information on dimensional weights and how to calculate them:

smallbusiness.fedex.com/packing-FAQs.html

As you can read above in this thread, HikaShop released an update in response to my findings and asked me to test it. Unfortunately the initial process of troubleshooting the plugin was extremely time consuming and left my client tapped out so we could not spend any extra time performing tests on behalf of HikaShop's fix.

My feeling is that this plugin has a lot of problems and would really benefit from clearer documentation. I hope HikaShop will apply some of their genius-mojo in this direction. Shipping calc plugins can really make or break an e-commerce solution.

Good luck!

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