How to Measure a Box For Shipping?

Nearly everyone shops online these days, which helps us understand the demand for e-commerce companies. Each day, tens of thousands of new e-commerce companies enter the market. Those e-commerce businesses need the right shipping boxes, and most of them struggle with how to measure a box for shipping.

Many find the process of measuring Shipping Boxes for their products a daunting task. Are you one too? Getting accurate measurements for your shipping box is way more important than you think. The safety of your products depends on the measurements you take before designing shipping boxes for them.

Everyone is aware of the significance of delivering products safely, and that’s why measuring shipping boxes is crucial. Look at it this way: errors in measurements can result in flawed shipping boxes and, ultimately, a bad customer experience. Therefore, we’ve covered everything related to “How to Measure a Box for Shipping" for you. So keep reading, and by the end of this article, you’ll be confident enough to measure shipping boxes.

Why Measuring a Box for Shipping is Important?

measuring the shipping boxes

Shipping a box that is too large or too small can result in extra charges, damages to the package, and delivery delays. It is important to measure your box accurately to ensure that you are charged according to the actual size and weight of the package.

Further, measuring your box will also help you choose the right shipping carrier and packaging material. For example, if you have a heavy and large box, you might need to use thicker and more durable packaging and write down the measurement in inches.

Measure the Length of the Shipping Box

You’ll need some of the necessary equipment to measure box dimensions. You must have a measuring tape or a ruler and a piece of paper on which you’ ll write down the calculations. To measure the length of the shipping box, you’ll needs to identify the longest side of the box. And take the measurements of the longest side with a ruler or measurement tape. If the box has flaps, you should take measurements from the inside of one flap to the inside of the other flap. By doing so, you will get the precise length of the box.

Measure the Width of the Box

Now that you have the length of the box, the next step is to measure the width. In order to determine the width, place the box on a flat surface and measure the shortest side of it. Make sure the box is closed and that the sides are straight and unbowed. Write down the measurement in inches from one end of the box to the other. If the Designer Box has flaps, you should take a measurement from the inside of one flap to the inside of the other flap. This will provide you with the accurate width of the box measurement.

Measure the Height of the Box

We’re still in the process of how to measure a box for shipping, and it's going really well, isn’t it? So now, after measuring the length and width, you’ll need to determine the height of the box. Put the box on a flat surface and measure the distance between the top and bottom. Further, make sure the box is shut and the sides are straight with no ridges or curves. Write down the measurement in inches from one end of the box to the other. You can then accurately calculate the box's height using this information.

Calculate the Dimensional Weight of the Box

You can calculate the box's dimensional weight once you have determined the box's length, width, and height. Shipping companies estimate a package's shipping costs based on its size rather than its actual weight using a formula called "dimensional weight."

Multiply your box's length, width, and height in inches, then divide the result by a dimensional weight divisor to determine its dimensional weight. Depending on the shipping company you use, there are different dimensional weight divisors. For instance, the dimensional weight divisor for UPS, FedEx, and USPS is 139 and 166, respectively.

Here is an Example of How to Determine a Box's Dimensional Weight:

boxes dimensional weight

  • Dimensions of the box: 18" x 12" x 10"
  • Multiply the dimensions: 18 x 12 x 10 = 2,160 cubic inches
  • 2,160/139 = 15.54 (round up to 16), which is the dimensional weight divisor (139 for UPS and FedEx).

In this example, the dimensional weight of the box is 16 pounds. You will be charged for the dimensional weight rather than the actual weight if the box's weight is less than 16 pounds.

Determine the Correct Shipping Rate

After you have measured your box and calculated its dimensional weight, you can determine the correct shipping rate for your package. This will depend on the shipping carrier you are using, the destination of the package, and the delivery speed you choose. You can use the shipping carrier's online rate calculator to get an estimate of the shipping cost. Enter the package dimensions, weight, destination, and delivery speed, and the calculator will give you a quote.

Make sure to choose the correct package type (e.g., box, envelope) and packaging material (e.g., cardboard, bubble wrap) to get an accurate quote. You can also compare rates between different shipping carriers to find the best deal. Some carriers offer discounts for certain package sizes or delivery speeds, so make sure to check for any promotions or deals before making a decision.

Tips for Measuring the Shipping Boxes

measuring a box for shipping

Here are some pro tips that will help you along the measuring and design process of shipping boxes:

  • For accurate measurements, measure the box on a flat surface at all times.
  • Use a precise and easy-to-read measuring tool like a ruler or tape.
  • Verify the box's closure and the sides for any ridges or curves.
  • In order to avoid underestimating the size of the box, round your measurements up to the nearest inch.
  • Check your measurements and calculations once more using a calculator.
  • Choose the right packaging material and cushioning to protect your product during transit.


It may seem difficult that how to measure a box for shipping, but the right information makes it way simpler. Accurate measurements will aid you in avoiding additional costs, package damage, and delivery delays. You can measure your boxes like a pro by following the simple steps mentioned in this article. Remember to always double-check your measurements and calculations and choose the right packaging material and cushioning to protect your package during transit.

Read More: How to Measure Box Dimensions

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