July 25, 2010
Have you done something to reduce shipping costs that made a difference? Would you like to share your success with thousands of people?
I want to publish ideas that have been proven to be effective in helping parcel shippers save on shipping. If you have any tips, suggestions, or guidelines that you can provide, and would like to contribute to my 2,000 + readers, please submit your blog entry to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are my guidelines of how to write a tip that gets published:
- What is the single idea that has worked? If you have more than one idea, you may submit multiple entries, but keep each post to a single idea.
- Explain your suggestion with steps on how to do it that follow in bullets or a numbered list.
- Provide a title for your idea.
- Then an introduction to it.
- Then tell us the idea.
- Give us the step on how to implement it—usually 3-5 steps.
- And then, summarize it.
- Please keep the number of words less than 300.
- Don’t use this solely for promoting your product or service. In the footer, you can put your name, company and website or blog, and I will link to it.
My intention is for this blog to contribute to all small parcel shippers to make a difference. Thank you in advance for your contribution.
October 10, 2009
I just got back from the PARCEL forum in Chicago. I had the opportunity to facilitate the PARCEL Key Executive Forum where a group of peers in the parcel industry met for the sole purpose of helping one another tackle the most challenging issues they face in running and growing their operations. One of the key issues was reducing transportation costs; the collective wisdom of this group of experienced parcel and logistics managers came up with 25 actionable ideas. Here are 8 of the suggestions:
- Evaluate parcel consolidators, like FedEx SmartPost, which offer a low cost way to ship high volumes of low-weight packages to residential customers. FedEx will pick up, sort, line haul, track and deliver packages by leveraging the delivery network and capabilities of the USPS for the last mile.
- Ship express packages with a hold for pickup option instead of First Overnight to substantially reduce express costs. The recipient can pick up the package at a nearby location.
- Charge customers for freight and shipping. Even if the cost is distributed internally it will increase awareness about the cost of shipping and choosing express options.
- Compare ground delivery guaranteed times to second day and third day air; many times ground will get it there faster for 25% of the cost. Use day definite instead of time definite services.
- Re-negotiate parcel contracts; hire a third party negotiator that works on a gain share basis.
- Use the US Postal service for brochures sent to sales people working out of their homes rather than UPS or FedEx. Check out the pricing for Priority Mail and First-Class Packages. It could be significantly less than the discounted rates with the residential surcharges.
- Create a global routing guide; compare Less-than-Truckload (LTL) to parcel and specify which mode shipments should utilize.
- Rather than importing shipments into the distribution center, investigate consolidated clearance for shipments coming to the United States. Manifest and label the packages overseas and have them sent directly to the carrier’s hub to reduce the cost of bringing them to the distribution center and re-shipping to customers.
We have formed a group on LinkedIn for PARCEL and I invite you to join and get feedback for your shipping challenges.
October 24, 2008
The US Post Office has a calculator on their website that figures out how much you can reduce your carbon footprint by shipping online. It is pretty cool. I figured out that if I drove two miles to the Post Office five times a month that I would save the planet from 230.7 pounds of CO2 and save $41.35 in fuel.
In addition, shippers that ship online save an average of 3.5% on Priority Mail and get free Delivery Confirmation! So, if I shipped just one Priority Mail envelope for each of those trips, I would save 15% on postage($.65 on Delivery Confirmation and $.05 on a one-pound envelope)
So, save yourself some money and help the planet by shipping online.