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For an online marketplace, where the buyer can select the postage option and pay the corresponding postage fee.

If I were to prefer looks over usability and don't want to group the price with the postage option. Would it be better to let the buyer select the postage option based on the postage options:

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Or based on price?

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3 Answers 3

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It would be hard to convince me that you would ever want to display the price as the "option" when choosing shipping, the primary reason being that the "description" of the shipping option is always (in my experience), the unique identifier for the type of shipping that you are requesting.

If you consider the most common traits for shipping options, there are, generally, four:

  1. Shipping Option Description
  2. Price
  3. Delivery Time
  4. Delivery Agent (e.g., postal service, UPS, FedEx, etc.)

Looking at those attributes, only the Description (unless you have described them poorly) is ever going to be guaranteed to be unique . . . you could have multiple shipping options that end up being the same price, you could have multiple shipping options that would arrive at the same time, but are provided by different delivery agents, and you could have a single shipping agent that offers multiple delivery "speeds".

So, based on that, from a users perspective, the only trait that you could use for a single-attribute selection method . . . where you could guarantee that all of the options were unique" . . . would be the Description.

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Commonly, what primes over price is what you're paying for. On that note, I would recommend explaining the type of service you can get and make the price secondary, i.e. "Receive it tomorrow (+$12)"

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If there is enough space, I would present them the options with all the details visible. Another otion is to predent them in a dropdown. Both suggestions below:

enter image description here

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    I like this idea. I would align the text to the right for days and price though, would make it easier to scan vertically.
    – jgthms
    Mar 8, 2014 at 18:13

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