Postal service

Postal Service woos small shippers with local next-day delivery service

Diving brief:

  • The US Postal Service said tuesday it launched a next-day delivery service for local businesses that ship within their community. The new service comes as carriers compete for a larger share of parcel volumes from smaller shippers.
  • USPS Connect Local is currently available in over 800 locations in Texas and will be live in all 50 states by the end of September, Steve Monteith, USPS chief customer and marketing officer and executive vice president, said at a press briefing. It also offers same-day and Sunday delivery to select locations.
  • The launch gives small businesses access to the same capabilities the USPS has provided to larger shippers over the years, according to Monteith. Pricing for Connect Local is available on the USPS website.

Overview of the dive:

USPS is looking to attract more business to small and midsize shippers at a time of heightened interest in the segment among package carriers. Unlike large shippers, SMBs do not offer massive volumes that could disrupt a delivery network and are generally more profitable for parcel carriers.

Monteith said USPS connectionthe new program that Connect Local is part of is “really about selling solutions for these businesses – a midsize business, a small business, a micro business”.

Small shippers are trying to keep up with accelerating e-commerce demand and rising consumer expectations for speed of delivery just as much as their larger counterparts. According to a survey of Bringg’s 500 enterprise retailers, 63% of US respondents already offer next-day delivery and 26% offer same-day delivery to meet consumer expectations.

USPS Connect Local is especially suited for local businesses that want to provide next-day and same-day delivery in their area, said Jakki Krage Strako, chief commerce and business solutions officer and executive vice president, USPS, during the briefing. . For same-day delivery through Connect Local, a business must bring their packages to the local post office between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m., she added.

“Businesses with a customer base in their postcode or a postcode served by their post office will find this solution extremely beneficial,” Strako said of Connect Local.

To quickly process and deliver local shipments, USPS uses a new operating model for Connect Local. A Connect Local package stays at its local post office for processing and delivery, bypassing the extra step of being transported through the USPS factory network, Strako said. This allows packages to be delivered the next day, rather than going through a two to three day delivery process.

Courtesy of the US Postal Service

“Operationally, we’re making savings there and we’re passing those savings on to our affordable pricing for the customer,” Strako said.

The USPS piloted Connect Local in Texas because it allowed the agency to test its capabilities in a range of urban, rural and suburban settings, Monteith said. He added that the USPS has targeted areas where it “has opportunities in terms of small business numbers” for Connect Local’s nationwide rollout, and the agency plans to offer the service in more than 3,400 locations across the country. here on September 30.

Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to include the rates the USPS will charge for Connect Local.