The global COVID-19 pandemic has radically challenged the economy and the broader business logistics infrastructure in many ways. In this article, we will have a look at how a current shift in consumer behavior is challenging the shipping industry, and how online transportation marketplaces can be a solution for companies that struggle to find transportation providers.
High demand is putting pressure on existing business supply chains
Currently, the shipping industry is in urgent need of a bigger delivery capacity. One reason for this gap in the market is the higher demand for online retail, due to the social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Lockdown measures across the world have dramatically moved consumer spending online as people avoid crowds and as many businesses reduce their brick and mortar operations. According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), online purchases have increased by 6 to 10 percent across most product categories. “The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift towards a more digital world. The changes we make now will have lasting effects as the world economy begins to recover,” explains UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi. The areas with the largest growth are tools, electrical goods, and health products.
This heightened demand is converging with the pending peak shipping season. Black Friday falls on November 27th this year, with Christmas following shortly after. With many parts of the country still experiencing rising Coronavirus cases, much more shopping will be done online than usual.
The transportation industry, responsible for delivering online across the retail supply chain, has already been struggling to adjust to the high demand of 2020 – and the holidays are going to lead to a new challenge for businesses and consumers to find affordable shipping capacity.
New coalitions with ongoing limits
To tackle the shipping capacity problem, USPS and ShipMatrix are teaming up to cover the high demand. To speed up the process of package delivery and therefore save money and time, this coalition is focusing solely on standard-sized small parcels. ShipMatrix states this delivery structure covers two-thirds of the parcel demand, which means that the other third is left to find alternatives.
Finding that alternative can be a challenge because other traditional options such as FedEx are having a harder time justifying the shipment of large and oversized items that exceed standard parcel sizes – therefore making that service more expensive.
So, the shipping industry is stuck with an ongoing problem: While the USPS and ShipMatrix alliance covers the heightened demand of clients that need to ship items in parcel sizes, there is an ongoing lack of carriers for big items. This doesn’t just include big packages, but also items like electric vehicles, motorcycles, boats, apartment moves – even COVID-specific items such as medical equipment, and innovations such as vending machines for PPE. What possibilities are left for businesses to ship their items in an affordable way?
Marketplace based provider as a solution
Marketplace transportation providers like CitizenShipper are filling this gap in the industry by offering high-quality transportation of large items, at affordable prices. CitizenShipper offers a huge freelance and gig-economy network of professional drivers as well as independent and insured shipping companies that can react flexibly to market changes – and as a competition-driven marketplace, it keeps prices reasonable.
Moreover, the carriers of CitizenShipper are trained in reacting to the customized demands of consumers and businesses. The company covers all kinds of transportation needs, from small parcels up to heavy, oversized, and bulky items – exactly the items that are getting increasingly hard and expensive to ship with typical firms.
The way consumers and businesses produce, sell, and buy goods has changed, and in these extraordinary circumstances, new innovative ways of distribution are required to stay competitive and increase flexibility.
For organizations that need to send packages of any kind on a regular basis, a marketplace shipping platform like CItizenShipper is a reliable option that adds far more control over the way packages are handled and delivered. The negotiations occur directly with carriers, opening up the possibility for specific routes, drop-off times, and handling instructions.
Ease your company’s holiday stress – list your company’s items with CitizenShipper today. Carriers will contact you with offers, and you can choose the carrier which best fits the needs of your business. The platform makes it easy to negotiate the financial and logistics details of your shipment, so you have a smooth peak shipping season.
Please contact us anytime, if you have questions regarding how to use Citizenshipper for your company – during the holidays, or any time!