Any entrepreneur who ships regularly has experienced the battle with shipping carriers. When choosing the best courier for your needs, the decision usually com1458333332_tmp_shutterstock_58132405es down to the big three: USPS, UPS, and FedEx.

Obviously, every situation is unique, but most small business owners have three major concerns: price, reliability and delivery time.

If your business only ships small packages occasionally, and your packages are weighing less than 2lbs, perhaps USPS is your best bet. USPS is the least expensive option offering free pick up and a good range of priority and express delivery options. We have developed a shipping rate comparison chart to help you identify which carrier to use.

Most big companies just pick up one carrier because they can enjoy bigger discounts with guaranteed volumes. While for small businesses, it can be a tough process to figure out which postal and delivery service will best meet the business needs. This article will provide a summary of the key differences among these three carriers, and we hope it will help you make better decisions.

Convenience

USPS has locations every where in the United States. They will pick up at your location for free if you use Priority Express Mail, which also includes free packaging in many situations.

UPS has more than 63,000 locations worldwide. It is easy to find a UPS drop-off location, UPS store, and customer service centre. However, they don’t offer free pick up. There will be an extra fee if you need them to pick up your packages. Also, they only offer free packaging for certain accounts.

FedEx has 51,000 locations worldwide. There have drop boxes where you can mail your packages. You can also schedule a pick up at for a fee.

Pricing

USPS is the best choice for anything light weight, especially using the rates on ShipGooder.com. For shipments under 2lbs, Our USPS rate will almost always be the cheapest option, especially now with the new FedEx and UPS dimensional weight pricing that is in effect. Our USPS rate is also a fantastic choice for oversized packages. To make an apples to apples comparison, we looked at Priority shipping rates for a variety of distances and weights. You can view a more detailed cost comparison here.

UPS and FedEx are closely priced in many situations, however, there can be price differences depending on the weight, dimension and origin/destination of your package. Both UPS and FedEx charge fuel surcharge and additional fees for pickup.

As you can see from this chart for small packages and letters, FedEx and UPS can end up resulting in double the cost of our USPS rates.

Tracking

You can track all your USPS Priority shipment from point to point.

FedEx provides detailed tracking for up to 25 packages.

UPS also provides detailed tracking for up to 30 packages.

By now, we hope you will be able to develop your shipping strategies with the most reliable and lowest cost carrier.

Also, don’t forget to check out how to print USPS shipping label [infographic] if you decide to ship with our USPS discounted rate. Happy shipping!


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  1. Pingback: Getting Started with Etsy: Part 2 – Shipping – Real Craft Wife

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