eBay bulk shipping tool & scan forms vs Pirate Ship to save money on shipments

Are you new to eBay and looking to save time & money when shipping items that you sold online? eBays Bulk Shipping Tool allows you to save precious time when shipping multiple items! Shipping online is becoming easier than ever, but there are plenty of little tips & tricks you need to know to make the highest amount of profit!

One trick is using tools like Pirateship.com. It is a third-party shipping provider that allows you to print USPS labels from home. Not only do you get all of the standard rates you are accustomed to, but commercial Cubic Rates are also included which is why you WANT this!

Shipping is the biggest hurdle that most new sellers face when getting started on marketplaces like eBay. I PROMISE that with just a bit of effort, you can figure this out in no time!

So let’s dive into this, but first, a bit of housekeeping…

To learn more about shipping on eBay for beginners, check out this blog post! 

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eBays Bulk Shipping Tool 

The good

  • Save you time over shipping one by one
  • Easy to use for anyone
  • Now allows multiple carriers comparison

The bad

  • Scan forms only with bulk shipping
  • Cant allow for an assistant to ship packages
  • Not much reporting data

If you wanna know some other reason why eBay SUCKS, check out this blog post!

Faster Process

Shipping items one by one really sucks & takes forever, especially if your eBay store is doing well & you’re busy! For us, a typical day is usually about 10 sales, sometimes more, sometimes less.

Now that isn’t that much, but it still is enough to justify using bulk shipping tools! This really becomes vital on Mondays. We don’t ship on Saturday & since weekends are the busiest times for sales typically, we can end up with over 40 items to ship come Monday!

Going one by one would take FOREVER, but being able to just quickly fly through a bunch of sales at once really makes the process so much smoother!

Super easy to use

By no means is this complicated, but it is still something that new sellers may not know about, that is why we are covering this topic in the first place!

When it comes to using eBays bulk shipping tool, there really is nothing complicated about it. Simply make sure your item weight & measurements are correct, from there select your carrier to finish up!

This process is the same as going one by one, just everything is on a list now so there is way less clicking!

Allows for multiple carriers now

This must be a more recent update that I missed. We haven’t shipped stuff in a while since Loreto handles that stuff on Pirate Ship, but this is a cool feature that we are excited about!

In the past, FedEx wouldn’t work with the bulk shipping tool & UPS wasn’t even a partner carrier on eBay. Now, things have changed, and not only are both carriers provided through eBay, but you can also compare them on the bulk shipping tool!

It may sound trivial, but it really is a game-changer. Being able to compare all three major carriers right there in front of you, WHILE bulk shipping is really awesome. Before, if we had an item that was heavy & odd-shaped it would involve jumping around to multiple places to compare the best price!

Scan forms suck on eBay

The only way to create a scan form on eBay is to use the bulk shipping tool. Though this still helps the carrier, there are some issues when it comes to this way of only being able to create one…

Keep reading, we cover this more in the perks of Pirate Ship!

Doesn’t allow employee access to shipping

We have mentioned it several times & even linked to a blog post about him, but if you are blind we have a virtual assistant that helps us with our eBay biz!

eBay allows for employee access, but it really is somewhat limited, not the best interface but we did a whole post about it here if you wanna learn more!

In general, having an employee on eBay still really isn’t where it should be. I’m hoping they make this a big focus in the next several years.

Right now, you can give you employee access to the basic functions like creating drafts, editing, and seeing some really basic stuff. No where does it allow an employee to create labels or to see sales fees.

Not much data about shipping

New sellers this won’t pertain too, but us more established people like to see these numbers sometimes. I hardly check my reports section on Pirate Ship, but it is interesting to look at sometimes.

eBay does great overall with sales reports and data, but this is one where they skimped on clearly. Below we will cover more about the back end of Pirate Ship!


Moving onto Pirate Ship

The good

  • Access to commercial Cubic Rates
  • Can allow safe access for a virtual assistant
  • Easy import of sold items

The bad

  • More expensive than eBay shipping for flat rate items
  • Only USPS rates

Cubic rates


This is the big reason why most people will use Pirate Ship, which is for access to commercial only Cubic Rates.

Pretty much, instead of factoring in the weight of an item, they just base it off the dimensions.
This works for smaller items under 20 pounds. I believe the size is somewhere around a shoebox that this will apply for.

In the most simple way possible, if you had a brick & wanted to ship it in a small box, Priority Mail Cubic Rate will be much cheaper than regular Priority Mail

You don’t do anything different to access this on Pirate Ship, just enter your item details as normal & if it meets the requirements, it will automatically select it!

Again, this is a service that MOST people don’t know about. You cannot get this service at the post office.

Import sales from eBay EASILY!

Literally, all you have to do is click a button & Pirate Ship will import all of your sales that are ready to go out from eBay! No more guesswork!

Not only that, but if you sell on other platforms like Shopify, Etsy, or SquareSpace, Pirate Ship will integrate with those as well! Pretty cool to be able to pull all of your sales into one place!

Sucks it doesn’t integrate with Poshmark, Amazon, Mercari, or any other major platforms 🙁

Detailed reporting

Again most sellers won’t care about this at all, but it is nice to see where your business stands! With how much we ship, it is fun to see these numbers on a graph!

Using this information, you can clearly see if we made some small tweaks & could drop our average shipping cost, it could save us a ton of money over the year!

Clearly, we cant alter USPS shipping rates, but we can ship smarter. Choosing the right packaging for the item to save the most amount of money possible is all we are after! Kinda like rich people & taxes… pay as little as you can to get by!

Safe employee access

As we mentioned, eBay doesn’t allow employee access to be able to ship stuff under their own login. The only way around this is to give them your main account access. Most people probably won’t want to do that, so Pirate Ship is one way to avoid that.

Now, instead of them having access to all of your eBay stuff, all they can access is Pirate Ship. Just makes it a bit safer all around since they can’t touch any financial stuff.

To learn more about Loreto and how we pay him $5 an hour to run our eBay business, check out this post!

More expensive than eBay rates for flat rate

This is clearly where Pirate Ship makes its money. I haven’t found any other situations where the price was crazier, maybe with a couple of international things but that is about it.

When it comes to flat-rate packaging, the price difference is pretty drastic!


Now if we compare that to Pirate Ship which is $.22 more expensive to ship the same flat rate packing item!


$.22 may not sound like a lot, but if you ship a ton of USPS Flat Rate packaging stuff, this may not be your best bet. eBay will be cheaper in this aspect!

Wanna learn how to get some free shipping supplies? Check out this blog post to get links to everything we use!

Only uses USPS

This is a big issue, but not so major for us clothing sellers. 98% of what I ship is under 16 oz which means it’s going First Class Mail. I avoid big things now.

That life & business is over. We shipped over 7000 unique items in the past few years & let me tell you, shipping heavy stuff sucks. To read more about our story, check out this post.

If you are the complete opposite and want to be the hulk everyday, enjoy shipping your heavy crap but I don’t suggest using Pirate Ship for it! eBay will be the better option as you can compare all three major carriers in one place!

One other thing to mention about this, Pirate Ship DOES ship internationally with USPS. You can fill out the customs information right through the site. No big deal and a great feature to have!

If you are nervous about shipping internationally with eBay, check out this post we wrote!

Which one is right for you?

Id say both. There is NO reason to not use Pirate Ship…it is a free service that is handy to have in your toolbelt. That is all this is, another tool to use only when you need.

As a new seller, just use it to check on small items that are heavy & cannot ship in the cheaper options of Flat Rate mailers for some reason.

Most of the time, especially if you are selling only clothing, you will never find a better deal than the rates that eBay gives you. They are good.

In conclusion

I hope this cleared up a few things when it comes to eBays bulk shipping tool & using Pirate Ship to save money on shipping.

Shipping is the biggest hurdle that sellers face when getting started on marketplaces like eBay,  but I promise that with just a bit of effort, you can figure it out.

If you need a bit more help, consider taking our FREE Beginners Course to Re-Selling, you can sign up for that here!

Make sure to join our journey on YouTube. It’s where we post the best stuff! Click here to view our channel.

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