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Dimensional Weight Explained: How To Calculate It?

Rashi Sood

Content Writer @ Shiprocket

July 23, 2021

4 min read

Dimensional weight is one of the significant factors that is taken into account while determining the shipping rate. Whether you ship yourself or a 3PL partner handles it for you, dimensional weight is imperative for determining the shipping price. In this blog, we shall discuss dimensional weight and how to calculate dimensional weight in kg.

dimensional weight

What is Dimensional Weight?

Not all product weights are calculated equally in shipping. What is soft and light in weight might take up a lot of space in the shipment. This can potentially hinder the carrier from shipping it along with other products. It will cost more to move a truck full of tables than one filled with mobile phones. Tables take up more space, and it will take more shipments for the carriers to ship them.

Dimensional weight is a pricing technique that shipping companies use to calculate the space area that a shipment will take. The dimensional weight and the shipment’s actual weight are compared, and the shipping price is determined by whichever is higher.

Dimensional weight, or DIM weight, has been used by air freight companies for a long time as aircraft space is premium. The postal and courier services have started considering dimension weight in recent times only.

eCommerce has seen remarkable growth in recent years. This growth was further increased during the pandemic, and strict restrictions were also in place, with more consumers turning towards online shopping. As the parcel volume surged and the demand for faster shipping also increased, courier companies are under pressure to maximize every inch of space they have in the delivery vehicle.

To ensure this, many courier companies have shifted to using dimensional weight. Using dimensional weight as a criterion to use shipping cost also encourages the online sellers to compact their parcels.

Understanding Dim Pricing

DIM pricing refers to the shipping cost that is calculated on the basis of the dimensional weight of the package. If the dimensional weight exceeds the actual package weight, the shipping cost is calculated based on dimensional weight.

Earlier, most courier companies calculated the shipment cost by the weight of the package and the distance for which it will travel—the greater the weight and the distance, the more expensive the shipping cost. Major carriers have now started adding a third factor – dimensional weight.

As said above, if the product is lightweight but in a gigantic box, the box will take up the valuable space in the delivery vehicle. So, the shipping rate is calculated as per the dimensional weight, only if it is higher than the package weight.

How to Calculate Dimensional Weight?

dimensional weight

Dimensional weight is calculated by converting a package’s length, height, and width into account. So, the formula for calculating dimensional weight is:

Dimensional Weight = (Length X Width X Height) ÷ Shipping Factor

The following are the steps to calculate dimensional weight:

  1. Measure the length, height, and width of your shipment. Remember that the bulges on the sides can lead to additional fees if not incorporated in the initial calculations.
  2. Once calculated, round off the weight to the nearest whole number.
  3. Now, multiply the dimensions to get the package’s cubic size. For example, if the package is 10 (length) X 10 (height) X 10 (width), the cubic size would be 1000 cubic inches.
  4. The last step is to divide the cubic size dimensional factor or DIM divisor. It is the number set by the freight carriers.

Weight Freeze on Shiprocket Panel

Dimensional Weight

Weight discrepancy is a common issue that many eCommerce sellers come across while shipping their package. Weight discrepancy is when the weight provided by the online seller mismatches with that provided by the courier. The shipping charges are also changed as per the change in the weight. They can be increased or decreased.

To help our online sellers overcome this situation, Shiprocket offers a feature where you can freeze your product’s weight in advance for all future shipping. You can upload the product picture and the shipping box pictures on the Shiprocket dashboard. Then, you can request to freeze weight for all your future shippings.

This will help you reduce the weight discrepancies as the shipping rates will be calculated as per the pre-decided weight of the package.

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Danish Khan

Content Writer @ Shiprocket

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