E-commerce spending was up more than 30 percent from early March to mid-April compared to 2019. The coronavirus pandemic means Americans are less inclined to do their shopping in-person. They’re ordering from online stores rather than brick-and-mortar ones.
That’s an adjustment for everyone, including the shipping industry. They must figure out how to both meet customer demand and keep employees safe.
Shipping carriers like USPS, FedEx, and UPS have changed the way they operate. Keep reading to find out how some specifics about how shipping companies work now.
Social Distancing and Staggered Start Times
Staggered start times are one key to allowing shipping carriers to operate both safely and efficiently. Let’s say that a shipping facility previously had 50 people arrive at 6 a.m.
Now, 10 people might arrive at 5 a.m., followed by another 10 at 5:30, then 10 more at 6 a.m., and so on.
The goal of staggered start times is ensuring that fewer people are coming and going at the same time. More people in one spot means more chances to spread the disease.
Staggered start times also make it easier to maintain some form of social distancing. When possible, companies are even spacing out out their equipment so employees aren’t working right next to each other.
Contactless Deliveries and Services
In the old days, a delivery driver would knock on the door and wait for you to answer.
That’s all gone now. You can expect shipping carriers to leave parcels by the door, then knock and leave.
Some will say “Thank you” from a few feet away once you open the door. Others will vanish without a word.
What about signature requirements? Companies like UPS are temporarily doing away with those. You might still need to show ID in some cases, but you won’t need to take a pen and sign anything.
What if you need stamps from the postal service? You don’t have to go to the post office to get them. USPS says they’ll deliver them to your house if you order online.
Fewer Shipping Guarantees
If you order something online, you may no longer see a guaranteed delivery time. That’s because the shipping industry has largely decided that safety is more important than speed right now.
Does that mean they won’t even try to get your items to you quickly? No, it doesn’t. It means that your shipping company won’t promise you a refund if a package doesn’t arrive by a certain day or time.
Companies are working to streamline their logistics so that they can deliver faster. You can learn more about what those efforts look like on sites like https://inloginc.com/
Customers may see those shipping guarantees return at some point. But right now, the shipping companies are still trying to adjust to ever-changing circumstances.
The Future of the Shipping Industry
What does the future of the shipping industry look like? The demand will still be there, but it will no doubt fluctuate as the country’s control of the virus changes.
Shipping companies must focus on doing their jobs without making circumstances worse. It’s challenging, but those challenges aren’t insurmountable.
If your business is struggling to adapt, you’re not alone. Bookmark our site to read more helpful advice on managing a company in the time of coroanvirus.