Preventing Pricing Discrepancies

A pricing discrepancy occurs when the customer reaches checkout and sees an unexpected price increase in their order. This is almost always caused by added shipping costs.

Shipping Charges

Of course customers are aware that they’ll need to have their order shipped to them, but they may not realize the shipping costs have not yet been added to their total. If a customer views their cart and sees a total price listed, they will often expect that to be the total price altogether, and may not notice that shipping has not yet been added — even if you include a note saying shipping will be calculated at checkout.

The solution here is to add dynamically-updated shipping costs to your store’s View Cart page. If your eCommerce software doesn’t include real-time shipping calculations, or doesn’t display them in the View Cart page, you’ll probably have some difficulties adding this feature yourself. Fortunately, real-time shipping visible in View Cart is built in to the 3dcart software, and includes rates for major carriers including USPS, FedEx, and UPS.

Handling Charges

A related price discrepancy occurs if you have an undisclosed handling charge for some of your items. Handling charges come into play when you need to charge the customer for additional time and/or packing materials used when shipping certain products. If you need to add a handling charge, make sure it’s fully visible on the product page and in the customer’s View Cart page.


Another possible cause for a price discrepancy is when tax is added quite late in the checkout process. Any taxes added to customer orders should also display in View Cart and update dynamically just like shipping charges, especially if some of your products require a high tax rate.

Remember, your goal is to avoid surprising your customer with any additional charges at checkout. If everything that adds to the price is visible early on, customers will be more informed and if they feel the price is getting too high, they may just opt to remove a single item from their cart rather than abandoning their purchase altogether.

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