Introduction to the SOAP Shipping API

Welcome to the Help for Metapack's SOAP Shipping API

Learn what this product does, how it works, and how to get set up…

What is the SOAP Shipping API?

The SOAP Shipping API is integrated with Metapack's Shipping platform (Delivery Manager). After you have configured your shipping logic, you can call the API to create, allocate and manage consignments, generate the associated paperwork, and send out same day or future manifests.

SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) means that the API uses the standard HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) request/response model:


Each SOAP message contains an XML request to a particular service method that is posted over HTTPS to the server. The method name and parameters are passed and delegated for processing, and the XML response is then sent to Delivery Manager, containing the return values (for example, the carrier service to which a consignment has been allocated, and a labels print file) - or else the fault data - of the method request.

The methods are contained within the services that can be downloaded as WSDL (Web Services Description Language) files from

  1. AllocationService (refer to Allocation Service Methods)

  2. ConsignmentService (refer to Consignment Service Methods)

  3. ConsignmentSearchService

  4. DebugService (refer to Debug Service Methods)

  5. InformationService (refer to Information Service Methods)

  6. ManifestService (refer to Manifest Service Methods)

How can the SOAP Shipping API help me?

Through the integration with the extensive shipping logic that can be created via our Shipping Configuration, and our full library of carriers, you can create and allocate consignments quickly, with minimal waiting times for despatch labels.

You create a library of API calls with specific allocation and manifesting criteria, and can then run the calls repeatedly. You only need to change the calls if new carriers are added or if existing carrier configurations and costs change.

There is no specific programming knowledge required to run the APIs - you just need to know the basics of creating XML tags. There are few mandatory tags, and so you can get up and running in next to no time once you have installed a SOAP testing tool.

Getting started

The following are the main steps to getting you started: