Thursday, January 17, 2008

Higher Shipping Costs Could Affect Canadian CE

Popular courier services in Canada, including FedEx, UPS, and DHL, have reportedly increased net average shipping rates for express services by 4.9 per cent, says ShipGooder, Inc. Sure, this might not sound like a big deal on the surface, but it could wreak havoc when it comes to the retail community.

Think about it: we often discuss important aspects of the retail business, like product pricing, inventory, and customer service. But there are important, back-end parts of the process that are just as important. Shipping is one good example. This process is what primarily determines when a retailer will receive his product to sell it, and when a customer who purchased said product will, in turn, possess it. This becomes an even bigger concern on the end-user side when we look at online companies, which rely, in large part, on their ability to ship products in a timely manner.

If shipping costs increase for the manufacturer, distributor, and retailer, this means they'll likely increase to the consumer, potentially through a higher sales price of the actual product. If not the product price, then the shipping and delivery charges a retailer offers could jump. "Free" delivery may be a thing of the past, turning into "affordable" delivery.

As for ShipGooder, the Toronto, ON-based company has a vested interest in reporting the price increase: it serves as a Web search engine that compares rates between national, regional, and local courier companies.

I tried out the site, at, and entered my office address as the "ship from", my home address as "ship to", and left the weight of the package at the default 10 lbs. A company called CDS Delivery had the best next-day rates, followed by UPS Expedited. When it came to 1-6 days ground service, FedEx was cheapest by far, beating out even Canada Post. The site certainly is convenient, especially when you're looking for a quick way to determine the most cost-effective method of shipping a package in your area.


Lee_D said...

Thanks for the info!

fatima said...

Hi Christine,

The information here is pretty useful. You should also check out Damon Schechter's blog on the increase in the shipping rates and the game behind the discounts offered. Damon is the CEO of an online fulfillment and warehousing company for small and medium sized businesses called Shipwire ( recently launched a warehouse in Canada. According to Damon if you put inventory closer to your customers, both you and your customer can save on the bottom line. Here is the link to the blog: