Rollo or ShipStation?

To start with, let’s remind ourselves of this principle: “Simple is Hard.”

When you first start off trying to solve a problem, the first solutions you come up with are very complex, and most people stop there. But if you keep going, and live with the problem and peel more layers of the onion off, you can often times arrive at some very elegant and simple solutions.

Steve Jobs

And this is exactly how we feel about ShipStation.

A good application that is

  1. Complex
  2. Expensive
  3. Requires a Monthly Commitment
  4. Desktop First, Mobile Second
  5. Software Only
  6. Setup Fee

Before we jump in deeper, we do need to mention that ShipStation was acquired and is now owned – as are most shipping solutions – by Stamps.com (Rollo is not owned by Stamps). We think this is important because while there are different labels for Stamps services, the pain points are essentially the same.

Let’s explore each of these in details

1. Complex

This is a sad tale that happens to many applications, organizations, and systems. As time goes by, they try to be the right tool for everyone. This increases complexity, and they end up alienating the very same users they wanted to attract and satisfy.

It takes discipline and clear mindedness to make and keep things simple. Have ever noticed how Google’s home page never changes? iPhone works the same way it did in its first generation. These are not accidents, but instead are the result of incredible engineering.

Here is ShipStation’s main page. We counted 64 clickable items (not counting the orders) on a single page. Talking about a steep learning curve!

ShipStation’s Order Page (Click to Enlarge)

2. Expensive

Let’s take ShipStation’s lowest priced plan.
$9.99 per month for 50 labels, the cost per labels = $0.20
The same numbers of labels on Rollo Ship Manager would cost only $2.50, the cost per label = $0.05

In other words, ShipStation’s Starter Plan is 4X the cost of Rollo.

Note that in this comparison, we are assuming that you will print the maximum number of labels allowed under ShipStation’s plan. If you print less than the maximum number, your cost will be even higher. For example only 30 labels would cost a whopping $0.33 per label with ShipStation and still only $0.05 per label with Rollo Ship Manager.

3. Requires a Monthly Commitment

At Rollo, we don’t believe you should pay for things you don’t use.

While ShipStation charges you each month regardless of whether you use the service or not, with Rollo you only pay for what you use and you still save!

4. Desktop First, Mobile Second

ShipStation was originally designed, before the mobile revolution, for desktop computers and they expect the majority of work to be done on your Desktop. For example, you cannot setup new selling channels or connect new shipping services via their app.

Rollo was engineered from the ground up to be fully Mobile and Desktop compatible. Rollo offers dedicated Apps for both iOS and Android and you can sign up, setup, and process everything from the mobile app without ever needing to login to Desktop (unless you wanted to).

5. Software Only

ShipStation only provides a shipping label software – meaning you still need to find a printer (such as Rollo) to print your shipping labels to. While this process technically works, with Rollo Ship Manager, everything is under one roof. No finger-pointing when there is a problem or a question. We take care of and support you through the entire shipping process.

6. Setup Fee

ShipStation has “Setup Services” ranging from $999 to $3,499.

At Rollo, we will help you setup for free.

ShipStation Setup Fees

ShipStation Setup Fees (Click to Enlarge)

Did we get something wrong or something has changed? Please drop us a note.