As you page through this issue, you’ll likely notice that there is a lot of buzz about Amazon. And it’s no wonder; the e-commerce giant continues to grow at an explosive pace, and there is constant talk that it is poised to change the shipment and delivery process like no organization ever has. And even though there are few companies that can rival the largess of Amazon, Amazon’s constant redefinition of customer expectations regarding their shipments affects almost everyone. Even just a few years ago, five to seven days was a completely acceptable time to wait for one’s package to arrive. Now, thanks to the two-day standard of Amazon Prime (or even same-day delivery, for certain markets), customers are often hesitant to wait more than a couple days for their order to arrive — even if the company they’ve ordered from is a mom-and-pop operation in the Midwest with a shipping budget only a fraction of Amazon’s. Amazon is certainly setting a standard, and it’s one that smaller operations might have a hard time meeting.
It can certainly be daunting to be a small or mid-sized shipper; you’re expected to perform the same as Amazon or other e-commerce giants, without those giants’ resources. But there are ways for smaller shippers to compete. Check out Jeff Haushalter’s article on page 22; he gives some great tips that allow your smaller size work for you, and not against you. And utilizing resources like PARCEL media or the PARCEL Forum (which will be held September 12-14 in Dallas!) is a fantastic way to stay abreast of new ideas and tactics to make your small shipment operation as effective as possible.
As always, thanks for staying connected with PARCEL.