As e-commerce continues to grow globally, customers will demand greater variety of transportation methods and more convenient ways of receiving their goods. Businesses were once able to get away with having a partnership with a single carrier but in today’s digitally connected world, companies run a huge risk if they put all their eggs in one basket. Carriers and services are continually changing; leveraging multiple carriers can give businesses an advantage in the marketplace, providing more shipping options and competitive shipping rates for customers. In order to keep up with growing customer demands, enterprises need to consider implementing a shipping solution with multi carrier compliance.
E-commerce has shown tremendous growth in the past few years, with the combined revenues of U.S. carriers amounting to over $150 billion in 2015. Thanks to the power of the Internet, customers from all parts of the globe can purchase and ship goods from virtually anywhere to their homes. And the U.S. market continues to remain the largest market in value terms for shipping carriers. Currently, the strongest domestic players in the parcel shipping industry include UPS and FedEx while integrators UPS, FedEx, DHL and TNT dominate the international express segment.
The amount of parcels shipped both internationally and domestically depend on the time of year but the number of shipments appears to be increasing annually. In 2015, UPS projected a 10% growth in holiday shipping volume to 630 million packages, while FedEx expected about a 12.4% increase from their previous year. As expected, the holiday seasons see the greatest amount of growth in shipping.
The sheer volume of shipments predicted last year emphasizes the importance of multi carrier certification programs to provide consistent service to customers. As shippers, the number one goal should be to deliver packages in a timely manner and without any damage, no matter where your customer may be located. The problem many shippers face is they often have to adhere to multiple carrier requirements. Not following rules can lead to delays, lost packages, additional costs and the inability to use particular shipping services. Retailers often find themselves handling different carriers at separate geographical locations and the key to success for companies working the international market is understanding every shipping requirement. This means companies need knowledge of import tariffs, packaging specifications, customs rules and compliance regulations.
Often times enterprises will utilize Direct Injection, Zone Skipping or Hub Induction as one possible solution to their shipping needs. These options all provide better service to customers while reducing freight spend. When multiple customers place an order, Direct Injection consolidates these orders for the first leg of their journey and then puts the goods directly into a parcel carrier network for the final delivery. It’s particularly advantageous when you need to ship items across borders. Solutions like Direct Injection or Zone Skipping can reduce customs clearance related costs and simplify the overall shipping process.
One downside with Direct Injection to consider is it can increase the number of carriers and services an organization must do business with. You may encounter several growing pains as your business figures out how to manage multiple shipping partners, but with clear organization and communication a Direct Injection solution can help your organization.
The end goal of any shipper is to deliver products to customers on time, without damage, at minimal cost and in the most efficient manner possible. As customers continue to purchase goods online and customize their shipping options, businesses must be able to accommodate increased delivery personalization. Shipping solutions with multi carrier compliance can impact entire processes in highly automated or high volume environments. This makes it easier for businesses to meet expectations and deliver high-quality service every time while complying with the appropriate shipping laws and regulations. If your business handles a high volume of shipments year over year and especially if you conduct business overseas, implementing a software solution with multi carrier compliance is crucial for your business success.