December 7, 2017

Be careful what you wish for… Black Friday can leave you black and blue.
After a Black Friday/Cyber Monday combination that saw record sales and a surge in online ordering, package carriers are once again struggling to keep up. This week UPS confirmed that some deliveries are delayed, with Shipmatrix research estimating an 89% on-time rate for UPS Express package delivery. In contrast, Shipmatrix pegged Brown’s nemesis FedEx at 94%. Continue reading UPS Delivery Delays Start the Holidays Off Unconvincingly

June 29, 2017

Retailers and consumers will have a new cost to contend with for the 2017 peak season. For the first time in its history, UPS has announced that it will add a surcharge to deliveries made during much of the holiday season.

It remains to be seen how competitors will respond, but shippers must be prepared for the likelihood that the other half of the parcel duopoly FedEx will follow suit. If all peak season shipments are subject to a new surcharge, it will undoubtedly influence how retailers prepare for the all-important holiday period.

Continue reading What the UPS New Peak Charge Means For Your Business

December 14, 2016

The weather outside is becoming reliably frightful. Unfortunately, the fire this season sets in the supply chain is far from delightful for many of the players involved in the holiday rush.

The annual challenge to meet surging e-commerce order levels and delivery expectations is not one that comes as a surprise to fulfillment professionals. Online sales break records every year. Carriers and warehouse gear up with more seasonal staff every year. Call it the supply chain equivalent of the Circle of Life.

Despite this predictable pattern, every year we always find headlines announcing delivery delays at the major carriers and operational bottlenecks that threaten to hit on-time rates for yet another holiday season. Continue reading Holiday Surge Stretches Carriers and Storage Options to Breaking Point

October 13, 2016

As the retail sector gears up for another hectic holiday season, attention turns to preparations being made by the package carriers to handle the annual rush.

The examination of 2016 holiday deliveries will be no exception, but the way the major carriers are approaching peak season this year is a little different. Alongside the standard strategy of bringing on a small army of temporary workers, both UPS and FedEx are exploring new technology to help them avoid delays and increase efficiency. Continue reading Planning for 2016 Holiday Deliveries Blends Hiring with Hub Automation

February 8, 2016

In 2016, e-commerce is undeniably the most popular way to connect customers with the products they love.  That makes e-commerce fulfillment the base on which great online brands are built. So far, so simple.

Building the kind of fulfillment solution that satisfies online customers every time they order is not nearly as easy. There are plenty of pitfalls on the road to growing a successful e-commerce site. Many of these revolve around the challenge of getting your goods to customers as quickly and cost-effectively as possible, which is also where errors start to creep in.  Continue reading Common E-commerce Fulfillment Errors (and How to Fix Them)