Shippers face an uphill battle against Amazon and the big box retailers. These giants have deep pockets, capable of offering low-cost, if not free, parcel shipping. However, that does not mean all shippers must face the challenges to ship parcel at their expense. Rather than giving up, shippers need to consider what Amazon and the big box giants have done right and apply these concepts as part of a robust parcel shipping strategy.
Amazon’s ability to offer free two-day, next-day or same-day delivery makes it difficult for traditional shippers to maintain a competitive advantage. If shippers charge to ship parcel, customers will simply go to Amazon. Unfortunately, the volume of small packages shipped, as well as the variety of carriers used, can make keeping costs in check sound like a dream, inaccessible.
Developing a robust parcel shipping strategy requires shippers go back to basics, such as the needs of customers. Customers want to pay as little as possible for shipping, and they want their packages delivered yesterday. As noted in a previous blog post, up to 37 percent of shippers are experiencing the growing pains of trying to get more packages to customers faster. However, tracking and tracing packages, as well as streamlining the packaging, labeling, and shipping processes, is key. Instead of focusing on charging more to ship parcel, shippers should redevelop their processes to streamline shipping and reduce delays, as well as freight spend. This has the effect of lowering overall shipping costs, meeting customers’ demands for lower-cost, faster delivery of small packages.
Amazon is not going to stop marching toward domination over LTL, FT, and Parcel shipping. Shippers must act now to safeguard their companies against the current and future might of Amazon. Know the threat of no-cost, fast shipping, offered by the big guys, and implement these best practices now.
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