The New State of Shipping

When you purchase a product from an online store, you are really purchasing two things:

(1) the actual, physical product, and

(2) the logistics associated with receiving the product, also known as the shipping.

There are a lot of moving pieces that go into sending a print-on-demand product from a manufacturer to the consumer’s shipping address—packaging and weighing the product, routing the package based on the selected shipping method, determining which carrier will pick up and drop off the package, tracking the order through the various checkpoints, and many, many more steps in coordinating a smooth transaction.

The ongoing global health pandemic has irrevocably changed the current and future state of shipping.

  • An influx in eCommerce sales. Many consumers are relying on online shopping even more due to stay-at-home orders and social distancing guidelines—in some ways, it is not only more convenient to shop online, but it is also the only way to get the goods you need.
  • Limited number of workers. Shipping facilities all over the world have drastically adapted to new health guidelines, meaning fewer workers handling and delivering the now enormous number of packages people are sending.
  • 50% reduction in commercial aircraft. With fewer people traveling around the world, the number of commercial air crafts has significantly decreased. Because many of these air crafts carry expedited packages, the reduced number of flights has caused shipping delays and increased shipping costs.
  • Restricted movement between countries. International transit has been limited in order to halt the spread of COVID-19. These border closures have also affected transit times and have caused additional shipping delays.

While we are all itching to get back to business as usual, the reality is that we must operate and reset to a “new normal” where the above circumstances may be prolonged for years to come.