Retailers can continue to expect rising prices for shipping parcels beyond peak season 2020, as FedEx recently unveiled rate increases and late fees set to take effect in 2021. Starting in January, FedEx will raise rates an average of 4.9% for its Ground, Express, and Home Delivery services, along with charging a 6% late fee to U.S. FedEx Express and FedEx Ground customers who don’t pay invoices within their agreed upon payment terms.
These latest rate increases come on the tail of FedEx and other major carriers levying surcharges in advance of the 2020 holiday shopping season. All together, these recurrent carrier rate increases point to the continued growth of e-commerce, propelled in large part by the COVID-19 pandemic and consumers’ shifting shopping behaviors. According to a consumer insights survey by Radial, for example, 66% of U.S. shoppers anticipate they will increase their online purchases during the 2020 holiday season, with 60% planning to shop less in-store this season due to fear of COVID-19 exposure.
As consumers increasingly turn to omnichannel shopping to safely buy goods during and beyond the pandemic, shipping volume has increased exponentially, putting increased demand on carriers and leading to the rollout of these surcharges and increased rates to offset costs.
As retailers continue to face these rate increases in tandem with higher levels of online orders, they’re challenged with the need to manage these volumes successfully and offer cost-effective ways to meet rapidly evolving customer demands. Growing their carrier network can help any merchant effectively tackle these challenges by introducing more options and capacity into the parcel delivery mix.
Implementing and optimizing a multi-carrier parcel shipping strategy serves as a key component in cost control for retailers and their ability to quickly react to carrier surcharges and rate increases. By leveraging a cloud multi-carrier shipping system, retailers can provide a consistent level of service to customers despite the surging demand for carrier capacity by accessing and automatically comparing different carriers’ rates to select the optimal carrier service for each shipment.
To learn more about how a multi-carrier shipping system can help your business optimize parcel shipping to help control costs, contact us today.