What is volumetric weight in shipping, and how to calculate it in online stores?

The cost of shipping any package in online stores depends on many factors, most notably the distance between the warehouses, the customer’s address, and the type of shipping. Of course, we cannot forget the most vital factor, which is the volumetric weight of the package. 

If you run an online store, you may have encountered the concept of volumetric weight when shipping your products. But do you actually know what volumetric weight is and its importance in the field of logistics? 

In fact, shipping companies base their final price determination on the volumetric weight, considering the package’s height and dimensions.

In this article, we will talk about the concept of volumetric weight and how to calculate it with reference to shipment tracking systems and provide best practices when determining the weight of shipments in online stores.

So without any further ado, let us dive right in.

What is the volumetric weight, and how is it calculated?

Volumetric weight, which is expressed in volumetric kilograms, describes the total size of a package.

 By multiplying the parcel’s length, width, and height (all expressed in centimeters) and then dividing the result by 5000, you can get the final volumetric weight result.

That means the actual volumetric weight = (Length x width x Height)5000.


For instance, let’s say a product has a length of 120 cm, a height of 50 cm, and a width of 100 cm. 

Then the volumetric weight of the package = 120 x 50 x 1005000 Kg = 120 Kg.

Notice that when we calculate the volumetric weight, we do not take the actual weight of the package into consideration. That means the volumetric weight only depends on the product dimension and nothing else.

What is the importance of volumetric weight for Online stores?

The merchant determines the price he will pay using the volumetric weight. Due to shipping companies’ encouragement for online retailers to use small packages that correspond to the actual size of the products, many online stores aim to pay attention to the volumetric weight and implement best practices in order to gain discounts and privileges.

Volumetric weight is essential for maintaining transportation organizations’ stellar services. It guarantees a fair fee for businesses shipping bulky but lightweight things that require more room than a shipment that is small but heavy.

Why do shipping companies care about volumetric weight?

Throughout the years, shipping companies realized that not all products of the same weight take up the same space during shipping. Large packages of the same weight can take up more space, making a big issue during shipping.

Hence the concept of volumetric weight was created and quickly gained great importance for shipping companies. With the help of volumetric weight, shipping companies devised various packaging methods that help them reduce both the size and weight of the parcel. So as a merchant, you need to know everything related to the concept of volumetric weight. This helps you ship your products at and reasonable price and also avoid any losses in the long run.

Learn about the most popular volumetric weight terms

To comprehend this topic perfectly, here are some popular terms you should know of that are associated with volumetric weight. 

  • Volumetric weight:

It is the weight of the parcel based on the dimensions of the size and area of the actual parcel. 

  • Actual Weight:

It is the actual weight of the product when placed on the scale. 

  • Billing weight:

It is the weight used by the company in order to determine the final bill payable.

Learn about the best practices for weighing products

Online store owners must apply the best practices when shipping products to customers so that the merchant does not pay any additional costs. We have listed below some of the best tips and practices when shipping products:


  • Re-packaging:

You must do a complete analysis of everything related to packaging the products in terms of the materials used to improve the parcel’s volumetric weight. This is done to stop it from causing an increase in the weight of the parcel and thus increase the shipping cost. 

  • Use small boxes:

Try to use small cartons as much as possible to reduce the package’s weight while maintaining the integrity of the product. This leaves room inside the parcel for any necessary packaging while also not occupying a massive space.

  • Measure the dimensions of the package accurately:

It is important to ensure that the package is measured before shipping it, as many too often, shipping companies impose additional costs due to the dimensions of the package.

Learn about the options of the shipping company. 

You can contact the shipping company directly to find out all the different offers and details regarding shipping products so that you can choose what suits you best.

Final thoughts

Now that you know what volumetric weight is and how to calculate it, it’s time to use this knowledge to reduce the volumetric weight of your products, hence reducing your shipping cost. By using Torod as your go-to shipping partner, you can take advantage of our pricing system when you subscribe to packages to fulfill orders and ship them to your customers everywhere.