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Nexternal: Customer Shipper Accounts

At your customer's request, ship orders on the customer's shipper account instead of your own.

Pamela Topper avatar
Written by Pamela Topper
Updated over a week ago

Product: Nexternal

In this article we'll discuss:


The Customer Shipper Accounts feature allows customers to enter their own account numbers for UPS and/or FedEx, such that they may pay for shipping directly rather than being charged for shipping within the order. Often B2B customers request this of merchants, to save money or for reporting purposes. The Customer Shipper Accounts feature allows the merchant to collect the customer's shipper account number for use in producing labels outside of the Nexternal platform.


Set up this feature in Settings / Shipping / Customer Shipping Accounts.

Select UPS, FedEx, or both, and enter the minimum customer Rank (Customers/Types) required; you may also override the minimum Rank (to either Allow or Deny) for each Customer Type via the Set Overrides button.

Customer Experience

When Customer Shipper Accounts are in use and relevant to the order, a "Charge my Shipper Account" link appears on the Invoice (final checkout) screen in the Online Store.

Clicking this link produces a modal popup with text boxes for the relevant account numbers. The optional Shipper Account Explanation also appears in the popup; you may choose to use the standard, dynamically generated explanation, or a custom explanation.

Note that the length of each shipper number is validated - 6 characters for UPS and 9 characters for FedEx; however, no additional validation is performed to check whether the customer entered a correct and valid number, or that the account belongs to the customer.

If you are using the Cart Calculator (Settings/Boolean Options), and the customer opens it from the cart, the optional Cart Calculator Explanation appears, when appropriate, below the displayed shipping options and rates, to explain that an option to use one's own shipper account is available during checkout. You may choose to use the standard, dynamically generated explanation, or a custom explanation.

When an account number is entered for a shipper that matches a Shipping Method in the order, the Shipping Rate for that shipment is always zero.

If there is no congruence between the shipper selected and the shipper for whom an account number was entered, the customer will not be able to check out. Instead, a warning message will appear above the Submit Order button, and the submit button will be inoperable until congruency is achieved:

In mobile checkout, the customer would click Shipper Account, Coupon, and Gift Certificate, then click Charge my Shipper Account, to view the modifiable Shipper Account Explanation and fields to enter shipper numbers. Congruence is validated at the order submit button, which grays out and is not clickable if there is no congruence.

Merchant Experience

In the Order Management System, orders that use a customer account number are denoted with an orange flag icon, which appears adjacent to the Order Number in the Order List and Detail screens.

Batch Processing is made easy with an option to "Exclude orders with a Customer Shipper Account” since those orders will be processed outside of the Nexternal platform. This eliminates the need for initial segmentation through Advanced Search.

However, when a merchant requires detailed segmentation and reporting, that is easily done in Orders / Advanced Search / Order Search, using the three search data points added in conjunction with this feature:

Important Notes

  1. Shipping labels must be generated outside of the Nexternal platform, as UPS Shipping and FedEx Shipping (Settings/Compatible Software/Online Shipping Tools) may not be used when a customer account number is in use.

  2. When placing or editing an order from within the OMS, users of Access Level Guest are held to the same Customer Type requirement (i.e. Rank, with overrides) as the customer would be, were he/she placing an order in the Online Store. However, Administrators, Editors, and Power Users are allowed to enter Customer Shipper Accounts for all active shippers, regardless of Customer Type.

  3. When a shipper account number is entered on a subscription order, that number is stored with the subscription and automatically applied to future orders generated for that subscription.

  4. Valid UPS Account Numbers contain 6 alphanumeric characters, while valid FedEx Account numbers contain 9 digits. All account numbers that meet these criteria are accepted, and no further validation is performed.

  5. The Custom Explanations support HTML tags to enhance formatting. Users unfamiliar with HTML are encouraged to use the WYSIWYG Editor (Settings/Boolean Options), as improper HTML may produce unintended results.

  6. This feature is also addressed in:

    • XML tools

    • Order Export

    • New Order Import

    • 850 EDI Purchase Order:


      TD5**2***UPS Ground**UP*1Z2345~

    rev. 3/15/23

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