An Introduction to shipping terms

Being an e-commerce seller, getting into this industry seems amusing. But sellers face a lot of challenges in managing logistics. Today, the Logistics sector performs tasks with back dated technology and support. They also work without dedicated warehouse area. Majority of logistics service providers consist only of a few personnels. The sector, as a whole, is not very organized and the workload is very volatile. Especially in the big cities, there are a vast number of service providers who fall apart. This is due to the lack of system security, reliability or standards. To overcome these drawbacks, here’s a list of jargons you must be aware of.

Airway Bill Number (AWB Number): AWB is an 11-digit code used for shipment tracking. This code is used to check the delivery status of the shipment and its current position. Use AWB to report the complaint with the shipping and Logistics Company if your order is late.


Shipping Invoice: It is a document that contains standard information. It includes the name and location of the sender and the receiver. It also contains

-the total number of items ordered,

-their cost,

-any discounts,

-taxes applicable and

-the final billing cost.

Shipping Label: A shipping label is pasted on the top of the package. It describes the contents of the package. It also contains the originating and destination addresses. This helps the courier carrier to deliver the package promptly.


Shipping Manifest: It is a document that acts as a proof of handing over the shipment to the courier company. It contains the details of the pick-up courier person. The shipping company gives one copy to the merchant and keeps the other copy for its records.


Freight Size: Freight is measured by its weight. Transportation vehicles of varying sizes have weight capacities. This cannot exceed due to engineering or regulatory reasons. Freight can also be measures by cube, which generally refers to the volume of the freight.

Freight Bills: The shipping and logistic company issues freight bills to the consignee. This bill includes details such as

-the description of the freight,

-shipper’s name,

-point of origin,

-actual weight,

-volumetric weight of the shipment and

-the bill amount.


Ready For Dispatch: This message is an indicator that the shipment is about to leave its place of origin. It flashes only after the AWB number has been processed and the order is assigned to a shipping Company.

COD Label: Cash on Delivery (COD) label is printed on the top of the product package. The courier person has its receipt. This label includes details related to supplier, receiver, and itemized list of products. It also mentions the amount to be collected. It also includes other details like AWB number, weight, and product dimensions.


Generate Pickup: This appears once the product to be shipped has been finalized. This entails selecting the courier company responsible for completing the order delivery. The cutoff time for generating pickups is before 1:00 PM from Monday to Saturday. No pickup is generated on Sunday.

Missing Orders: These are the orders that couldn’t be processed at the initial stage. Factors responsible for such an error include-

-the product order not checked out properly

-failed payment process.

Return to Origin (RTO): It contains the address of the sender.  The product can be returned to the point of origin if there is a discrepancy in the product or order placement.

Warehousing: It refers to the storage of goods for a specified period of time. Centralizing an operation like warehousing usually leads to cost reductions as well. Also, centralized warehousing contributes to lower inbound distribution costs. Another benefit of warehousing is the expansion of opportunities for relationships with online retailers.

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