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Royal Mail - Despatch Express - Automation - Tracked and Recorded Label printing

Royal Mail Despatch Express integration


DESPATCH EXPRESS has been withdrawn by Royal Mail and is no longer supported. Linnworks can integrated with Royal Mail directly for all OBA and Tracked services. See documentation here



Despatch Express is Royal Mail software for streamlining shipping operations. The software can print out postage labels, generate tracking numbers, verify postcode based addresses and bill your Royal Mail account automatically. You will qualify for Royal Mail Despatch Express automatically if you ship 10k GBP per annum using combination of the following services: Special Delivery™ Next Day, Special Delivery™ 9am, Recorded Signed For™ and/or International Priority Services.

Linnworks is integrated with Royal Mail Despatch Express, the integration allows you to print Royal Mail labels from Linnworks by sending relevant information to Despatch Express from the system at a click of a button or automate printing of labels and production of manifest to handle postage automatically. Any tracking numbers produced by Despatch Express will be recorded in Linnworks and can be automatically emailed to your customer.

This document describes how to configure DE (Despatch Express) to work with Linnworks and how to configure Linnworks to work with DE.

Configuring Despatch Express to accept direct data feed

The Direct Feed feature is initiated as soon as Despatch Express is loaded. However, it has default settings for the names of the various files and the location of the pickup folder. To view or change these defaults, select ‘Tools’ / ‘Direct Feed’ from the menu. The following screen will be presented:

Viewing this screen suspends polling the pickup folder. The folder can be changed by clicking ‘Browse’ and selecting the appropriate folder. Note that the folder need not necessarily be on the Despatch Express PC.

The filenames can be changed by simply overtyping. Click the Resume Polling button and then close the screen to continue.

Configuring Linnworks to work with Despatch Express

  • Go to Settings > Shipping Management > Shipping Integration > open Despatch Express tab
  • Add Pickup folder, specify data file, lock and result files locations to be the same as Despatch Express configuration. Please note both systems - Despatch Express and Linnworks must have the same values set for all fields and must be able to access these locations (be able to write/read files)
  • Specify default packaging format. This format will be used if the packaging is not determined for the order or packaging name does not contain indication of which format should be used. Linnworks will attempt to determine the format for the postage like follows
    • If packaging name contains Packet then the format becomes Packet
    • If packaging name contains Large Letter the format becomes Large Letter
    • If packaging name contains Letter the format becomes Letter
  • You can specify 2nd class service by including Second in the title of the Postal Service
  • You can specify default weight of the order in case the system cannot determine the weight of the order automatically. Set 0 if you don't want to use default weight
  • You will need to add postage services that will be used in conjunctions with DE. i.e. only order with this postal service selected will be sent to DE to print label. Click Add Service and select the appropriate service from the list.You will then have to specify the appropriate code for the service used. This code will depend which service you are using and what type of enhancement you want for the service. If you are not sure which codes to use please consult your royal mail account manager. You can find the table of service codes and enhancementnumbers in Appendix A and B.

Service Enchancements

The service code is specified as CODE{enhancement}

For example:

SD101{1} - Special Delivery Next Day 500 GBP (enhanced Consequential Loss £1000)

TP201 - Royal Mail Tracked

Example 2nd Class Letter

Postal Service Name :~ Royal Mail Second Class Letter

Code :~ STL01<L>

Please refer to the tables at the end of this article for codes and enchancment options. If you are not sure what combination to use contact Royal Mail account manager.


  • Remember to make sure all data files on this screen are correct, and other details such as your Account Number have been entered correctly
  • Save the table of services and configuration by clicking Save button

Printing Labels from Linnworks

  • Select the orders you want to print out (or press CTR+A to select all, you can multiselect with holdin CTR button and select the orders)
  • Right-click on the order and select Print > Print Shipping Lables
  • The printing indicator will show that the order label is being printed. If successful it will turn into Gray tick,
  • If failure you will see a cross.If failed, you can move a mouse over the cross to see the error message


Alternativly you can send a label to Despatch Express when you processing order (fulfilling it) one-by-one. You can also conifgure the system to send label to Despatch Express automatiocally when you enter Order Process Screen.

To print a label from Order Process screen one-by-one

  • Select an Order from Open Orders screen
  • Click Process
  • Click Print Label

To configure the system to print label automatically when you enter Process Order screen

  • Go To Settings > Order Book Config > tick Print/Generate Shipping label when process order form is opened.
  • Save configuration

Appendix A - Service Code Tables

The following table lists the valid services that are supported by Despatch Express. It is ossible that other services may be added in future. Only those services that are set up gainst your Royal Mail account will appear on Despatch Express.

Royal Mail Service Code Service Description

  • SD101 Special Delivery Next Day £500
  • SD201 Special Delivery Next Day £1000
  • SD301 Special Delivery Next Day £2500
  • SD401 Special Delivery 9am £50
  • SD501 Special Delivery 9am £1000
  • SD601 Special Delivery 9am £2500
  • TP201 Royal Mail Tracked
  • STL01 Standard Tariff Letters 1st **
  • STL02 Standard Tariff Letters 2nd **
  • CRL01 Packet Post Daily Rate 1st Class **
  • CRL02 Packet Post Daily Rate 2nd Class **
  • FS101 Packetsort 8 1st Class Flat Rate Large Letter **
  • FS201 Packetsort 8 2nd Class Flat Rate Large Letter **
  • PK101 Packetsort 8 1st Class Flat Rate Packets **
  • PK201 Packetsort 8 2nd Class Flat Rate Packets **
  • PK301 Packetsort 8 1st Class Daily Rate **
  • PK401 Packetsort 8 2nd Class Daily Rate **
  • PPF01 Packetpost Flat Rate 1st Class **
  • PPF02 Packetpost Flat Rate 2nd Class **
  • OLA01 Overseas Letters Airmail **
  • OLS01 Overseas Letters Surface **
  • MP101 International Contract Airsure **
  • OF101 International Format Sort Priority **
  • OF301 International Format Sort Economy **
  • OZ101 International Zone Sort Priority **
  • OZ301 International Zone Sort Economy **

** These services require the addition of a service enhancement if a barcode is requiredon the label. If no Service Enhancement is added, then a plain address label will be produced. The Service Enhancement codes are shown in Appendix B.

Appendix B - Service Enhancement table

Service Enhancements are sometimes referred to as "Fees"

Applies to code(s)
1 Consequential Loss £1000
SD101, SD201, SD301, SD401, SD501, SD601
Consequential Loss £2500
SD101, SD201, SD301, SD401, SD501, SD601
3 Consequential Loss £5000
SD101, SD201, SD301, SD401, SD501, SD601
Consequential Loss £7500
SD101, SD201, SD301, SD401, SD501, SD601
5 Consequential Loss £10000
SD101, SD201, SD301, SD401, SD501, SD601
11 Recorded
TL01, CRL01, CRL02, FS101, FS201, PK101,PK201, PK301, PK401, PPF01, PPF02
21 International Airsure
OLA01, OF101, OZ101
22 International Airsure with additional compensation
OLA01, OF101, OZ101
31 International Signed For
OLA01, OLS01, OF101, OF301, OZ101, OZ301
32  International Signed For with additional compensation
OLA01, OLS01, OF101, OF301, OZ101, OZ301

Enhancement codes are added with {} after the main code. For examples, CRL01{11}