How To Create Free Shipping Discounts on Shopify [Step-by-Step]


If you’re charging customers for shipping, stop right now. Shopify’s internal research found that customers buy over $22 more on average with free shipping than paid shipping. They’re also likely to buy more items if you have a cart threshold value requirement.

And who can blame them? We all love getting something for nothing! If you’re ready to experiment with free shipping and see how it can affect your store’s average order value, this article is for you. In this article, we’ll go over the step-by-step process to set up free shipping on Shopify. Let’s get started.

What is the purpose of free shipping? Why do brands use it?

Free shipping is a great addition to your existing promotions and incentives for customers. When used strategically, it encourages customers to buy more and helps you increase revenue without added effort. Here are a few ways in which a free shipping discount can benefit your store:

  • Increase sales and average order value: When you enable free shipping, the first thing you’ll notice is an increase in conversion rates. Over 48% of shoppers abandon carts because of unexpected fees and shipping costs at checkout. 
  • Improve store experience: Allowing customers to purchase the products for the price they see adds to a great customer experience. Many stores account for the shipping fees within the cost of the products. While this means the prices increase by a little, it also lets you offer free shipping to customers without facing a revenue loss. 
  • Competitiveness: Amazon has spoiled its customers. The free shipping on all orders, same-day delivery, and superior customer service make customers expect the same from all retailers. Free shipping is just one of the ways in which you can satisfy the customers’ expectations. 

Now that you understand the benefits of offering free shipping let’s dive into the step-by-step process of creating discounts for free shipping in your Shopify store.

Steps for setting up free shipping on Shopify

Creating shipping discounts or free shipping on Shopify is simple. To begin with, you need to access the Discounts page in your Shopify admin. Here’s how to do it:

Log in to your Shopify admin. Click on “Discounts” in the left-hand menu. Once you’re in the discounts dashboard, click on “Create Discount” at the top right corner of the page.

From the “Select discount type” drop-down menu, choose “Free shipping“.

In the “Discount code” section, enter a name for your new discount code. You can also generate a random code by clicking “Generate code“. In this case, I’ll use FREESHIP75 as the discount code.

We’ll set this code to be applicable only if the cart value is over $75.

Under “Countries“, choose the countries where you want the discount to apply. You can either select “All countries” or choose specific ones.

If you want to exclude free shipping for orders over a certain amount, check “Exclude shipping rates over a certain amount” and enter the value in the field.

Under “Minimum requirements“, choose either “Minimum purchase amount ($)” or “Minimum quantity of items“. Then, enter the dollar value or the number of items that need to be added before the discount applies.

We want our discount to apply only if the cart value is over $75. Let’s set the minimum purchase amount to $75 here.

In the “Customer eligibility” section, select who the discount applies to: everyone, specific customer segments, or specific customers. If you choose to allow the discounts to be used by a specific group of customers, select “Specific customers” or “Specific customer segments” and use the search field to create and select your customers. 

Under “Maximum discount uses“, choose whether to limit the discount usage or not. You can set a total number of times that the discount can be used or limit it to one use per customer.

You can also set up the discounts to be combinable with order and product discounts on your store. 

And finally, in the “Active dates” section, set the start and end dates for the discount. If you don’t set an end date, the discount will not expire.

Click “Save” when you’re done.

Your new discount code will now appear on the Discounts page in your Shopify admin. You can distribute this discount code by sending it to your customers by email or displaying it on your online store.

Automatic free shipping discount on Shopify

If you do not want to create a discount code for free shipping, you can also create an automatic free shipping discount based on the order value threshold. 

To get started, you need to have the shipping rates set up for your store. 

Go to Settings > Shipping and Delivery and click Manage beside the General shipping rates profile. You’ll see a list of default shipping settings. 

This setting applies to all the products in your store unless you have alternative shipping profiles setup for specific products on your store. 

Scroll to the Shipping Origins section and create a shipping zone. Give your shipping zone a specific name and you’re ready to start adding rates. Click Add rate to proceed.

In the Add Rate popup box, set up the shipping rate. Add the rate as $0.00. Right under the shipping price, click Add Conditions to setup conditions that trigger this special shipping rate.

For this example, I’ve set up the shipping rate to be $0.00 for all international orders above $100. 

Click done, and you’re all set. But there’s one thing missing with automatic discounts on Shopify—your customers are not notified about the discounts on the checkout page. 

Free shipping progress bar to Shopify 

Adding a progress bar to your checkout page that encourages customers to add a specific $ value of products for free shipping can help you increase your average order value and revenue. 

To do that, you need an app like Automatic Discounts & Gifts (ADG). It extends the default Shopify discounts functionality and gives you more flexibility and control over them. In this case, we’ll use one of its features—a free shipping progress bar. 

Awesome app with a lot of different options and configurations! The user experience for both the shop owner when setting up a promotion as well as your potential customer purchasing a product is very well thought through and comfortable. Getting in touch with support was easy and extremely fast. We had a question and help was on the way quicker than we had ever imagined. Everything was taken care of and the app is working just great. Highly recommend using this app for your promotions!

— BU:KEI Beauty, Germany

Once you’ve installed ADG, go to Apps > ADG and you’ll see the app dashboard. Click the Free shipping tab as shown in the below screenshot. 

Click Show Settings under the switch for your shipping profile. 

You now set up what the free shipping progress bar says on your cart pages. ADG pulls the shipping rates from your Shopify settings and extends them to make more customers aware of the discounts and take advantage of them. 

Once you’re satisfied with the setup, turn the switch on and you’ll now be showing a progress bar on your cart page!

Grow your order value with free shipping

If you’ve always charged for shipping, simply adding a threshold for free shipping will show you a boost in order values. That’s because new customers are not as trusting of your products as existing ones. And if you’re able to counter one of their major reasons for abandoning carts, you create a win-win situation for your store and your customers. 

While Shopify’s default discounting features are more than enough for creating simple discounts, as your store grows and you experiment more, you need more flexibility. You may want to create BOGO discounts that trigger based on specific conditions, or any custom deals for your customers. That’s when an app like Automatic Discounts & Gifts comes into play. 

Spent a lot of time looking for an app that could suitably add a free gift to the customer’s basket upon the inputting of a discount code. Presently, this is the only app on Shopify that does so. And it does so impeccably.

—Naturally Wicked, United Kingdom

It integrates with Shopify’s existing discounting features and allows you to create highly flexible discounts and deals to help you boost your store sales. 

Boost your sales with ADG! Create irresistible gifts, upsells, and custom deals in minutes.

4.6 star with 200+ shopify reviews

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Don’t leave dollars on the table—ADG helps you add thousands in sales every day
4.6 star with 200+ shopify reviews
Don’t leave dollars on the table—ADG helps you add thousands in sales every day
4.6 star with 200+ shopify reviews