Magento has very feature rich shipping system and usually it is relatively easy to add a new shipping module but there are some exceptions....
What if the service by nature presumes that end customer has to pick the right location from the list?
http://smartpost.posti.fi/en/index - in here user has to pick the correct parcel terminal, where customer will receive the package
Sometimes service presumes that user has to pick the post-office where he/she wants to receive the package.
From the user standpoint it is far better if customer could pick the correct entry from the select menu. Unfortunately Magento lacks functionality for such kind of service as this is sort of new service and has not yet spreaded.
Situation gets even worse when there are more than 1000 possible locations to choose from.
I have made a generic solution, which allows to insert any number of locations tied to one carrier, and customer has a display of two select menus, where:
* first select menu contains all the cities/counties
* second select menu contains all the postoffices, which belong to the selected city or county.
This way customer can pick the postoffice with relative ease and I have already made some implementations which use this generic framework:
http://en.e-abi.ee/post24-postkontorite-moodul-magentole.html - has over 500 post offices
http://en.e-abi.ee/post24-moodul-magentole.html - has over 30 parcel terminals
http://en.e-abi.ee/siuntos24-parcel-terminal-module-lithuania-for-magento.html - has over 50 parcel terminals
http://en.e-abi.ee/itella-post-office-finland-smartpost-for-magento.html - has over 1000 post offices
Check the pictures on each product, also the list doesn’t end here.
This generic framework also offers two extra buttons under the Sales Order View screen in admin.
* Send parcel data to server - (extending module has to implement this functionality) but this button is displayed automatically, when automatic data sending is applicable.
* Print packing slip - (extending module has to implement this functionality) this button is also displayed automatically, when third party server has it’s own packing slips and they need to placed on the parcels before sending them.
Example can be seen here: http://en.e-abi.ee/post24-postkontorite-moodul-magentole.html
Postoffices/Locations are stored to database
It is possible to build a location editor component for the admin, which enables to create arbitrary locations for single carriers.
If the postoffices come from external location, then they are automatically synchronized to make sure the list is always up to date.
If you feel that some of those features seem useful, then do not hesitate to contact me right here: