Warehousing & Fulfillment

How to Achieve Affordable Nationwide 2-Day UPS Ground Shipping

Warehousing & Fulfillment
March 10, 2020
11 min read

As merchants seek to provide faster and more affordable shipping options for customers, many discover that building an efficient delivery network is more complicated than they first anticipate. Often times, the standard ground shipping options offered by major carriers are too slow to reach customers across the country. However, the high costs associated with air delivery make this option too expensive to afford long-term. But given these constraints, how can merchants develop distribution networks that guarantee 1-2-day delivery speeds for all their U.S. customers without having to pay expensive shipping fees? One answer may lie in Ware2Go’s on-demand warehousing and fulfillment network.

Context: Both Businesses and Consumers Want 1-2-Day Delivery

Today, it’s no secret that offering 1-2-day order delivery speeds is a vitally important capability for merchants. This is true across virtually all industries and market segments and regardless of whether a company sells directly to consumers via e-commerce or relies on a network of wholesalers and distributors. Over the past few years, data has consistently shown that not only are buyers coming to expect 1-2-day delivery speeds, but they’re also expecting these deliveries to be cheap. In fact, 39% of consumers in a 2019 NRF survey indicated that they EXPECT to have free 2-day delivery available for their online purchases. Another 29% revealed they’d recently canceled a purchase or abandoned a checkout cart because free 2-day shipping wasn’t provided. On the business side, a study conducted as far back as 2017 found that 67% of corporates expected to have 2-day delivery available from their suppliers.

Understanding customer expectations for fast & cheap delivery‍

Ultimately, the end result of these heightened customer demands is that merchants of all sizes and industries are being driven to find faster and more affordable ways of delivering their products.

Achieving Nationwide 2-Day Shipping Speeds Can Be Expensive

As merchants seek to create shipping and fulfillment models that can meet the rising expectations of their customers, many are quick to discover that creating an efficient 2-day delivery network is a very challenging project to undertake. More often than not, these challenges are directly related to cost.  

For merchants that are shipping orders from a single location (such as an office or local warehouse), air shipping methods might be the fastest way to reach customers on the other side of the country. However, this might not be a cost-effective option to leverage long-term. For instance, shipping a 5-pound package via air delivery through most major carriers air can cost up to $100. With a 10-pound package, it’s closer to $150. For many businesses, paying this amount to ship an order could entirely eliminate their margins and might even result in a loss. And because few customers today are willing to cover these costs themselves, using air delivery methods to achieve 1-2-day delivery is usually only cost-effective if the products you are selling are very expensive themselves (i.e. paying $100 to ship a $2,000 jewelry package is more logical than paying $100 to ship a $100 pair of running shoes).

In place of air delivery, ground shipping options are typically much more affordable. In fact, shipping a 5-pound package via the major carriers will usually cost between $10-20. Moving up to a 10-pound package, the charges can range from $20-40. However, if you’re attempting to complete a cross-country ground delivery (i.e. from Philadelphia to Sacramento), the total shipping costs will likely be higher due to how carriers address  “long-zone” shipments. Also, it’s important to understand that while ground delivery is much cheaper than air transport, it usually takes longer for packages to arrive. Looking at the U.S. specifically, standard ground delivery will typically take anywhere from 1-6 days depending on the locations of your customers and where orders are being shipped from. As a result, relying on ground delivery may not address buyers’ demands for faster shipping speeds.

So then, given that air delivery is probably too expensive and standard ground delivery is often too slow, how can merchants create a distribution network that guarantees 1-2-day delivery speeds for the entire U.S. without having to pay expensive shipping fees?

One answer may lie in Ware2Go’s on-demand warehousing and fulfillment network.

‍How Ware2Go Helps Businesses Create Affordable 2-Day Ground Shipping Footprints

Today, there are a number of “3PL” providers that exist to help merchants manage their logistics and distribution workflows. However, few of these providers can offer cost-effective service to smaller and mid-size merchants in a manner that enables them to create comprehensive 2-day delivery networks. This is not the case with Ware2Go – instead, we were created by UPS for the primary purpose of providing 1-2-day ground delivery coverage across the U.S. for merchants of any size or industry.

Ware2Go can best be thought of as an “on-demand” warehousing and fulfillment service that manages everything from the storage of a merchant’s products, all the way through to delivery to the end customer. And with UPS as our parent company, we can guarantee 1-2-day ground delivery speeds across the entire U.S. at very affordable rates. The way it works is simple and is outlined in the following steps and graphic:

How Ware2Go helps businesses create 1-2-day delivery networks
  • Analyzing Our Merchants’ Requirements. As new merchants reach out to us, our analysts work with them to evaluate their product specifications, order volumes, and customer locations to determine where in our warehouse network their inventory should be stored. We also use these analyses to determine how much inventory should be stored and how often it should be restocked.
  • Strategically Allocating Warehouse Space. Based on these analyses, Ware2Go will position our merchants’ inventory in the warehouses that can provide the most effective coverage. Typically, merchants that require 1-2-day delivery across the entire U.S. will need to position inventory in three warehouses. But because Ware2Go offers pay-as-you-go storage space with monthly fees, the costs of leveraging these facilities are very low.
  • Managing the Entire Fulfillment Process. Once merchants’ inventory is positioned in our warehouses, Ware2Go can then manage fulfillment across any e-commerce, wholesale, or distributor channel. This includes e-commerce marketplaces like Amazon, Wayfair, or eBay, as well as platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, or BigCommerce. As new orders are captured by merchants, our technology solution integrates with their e-commerce and order management platforms and assigns the fulfillment responsibility to the appropriate warehouse for a seamless operational workflow.‍
  • Providing Guaranteed 1-2-Day Ground Delivery. As new orders are captured in our system and fulfilled by our professional warehouse teams, we rely on UPS to deliver the packages to the end customer–whether that’s a consumer, business, or anyone in between. Through UPS, Ware2Go is capable of delivering orders across the entire continental U.S. in 1-2 days. We can also handle LTL and FTL shipments for merchants that deliver bulk shipments to wholesalers, distributors, or retailers.
  • Enabling Affordable & Efficient Distribution for All Businesses. As a result of the above capabilities, every merchant that uses Ware2Go receives a tailored distribution network with fully managed warehousing and fulfillment services that guarantee 1-2-day delivery for their customers. Each merchant also receives full visibility into their warehouse operations and order fulfillment data via our online user interface and warehouse management system. And because the entire model is “on-demand”, merchants can adjust their usage of our services at any time in-line with their seasonality or the shifting needs of their business.

In practice, the above model has enabled startup businesses with just a single employee, all the way up to large enterprises with hundreds of employees, to create low-cost distribution networks that provide guaranteed 1-2-day ground delivery coverage for their customers.

But don’t just take our word for it; below, we provide three examples of how existing customers of different sizes and industries are currently leveraging our network to achieve optimal levels of distribution efficiency.

Three Businesses That Use Ware2Go for Guaranteed 1-2-Day UPS Ground Delivery

  • A Large Water Filtration Provider. This customer approached Ware2Go in 2019 after they had begun using e-commerce channels to reach a broader base of consumers. As their customer base spread across the country, they realized that the single warehouse facility they used in Colorado could not deliver orders efficiently to the East Coast. And with air delivery being too expensive, they needed a provider that could expedite their deliveries without creating excessive overhead. With Ware2Go, this customer was given access to two new warehouses and now receives 2-day ground delivery coverage across 95% of the U.S. They also achieved ~20% 1-day ground coverage and are saving significantly on shipping expenses compared to their former fulfillment structure.
  • A Mid-Sized Furniture Supplier. This merchant came to Ware2Go while they were in the process of developing direct-to-consumer sales channels via e-commerce marketplaces like Amazon and Wayfair. Although they had been using their own warehouse to distribute products to wholesalers for over a decade, they realized they needed a more efficient distribution network to support a more demanding base of online consumers. By transitioning to Ware2Go, they were able to entirely eliminate the use of their own warehouse and now leverage three facilities in Ware2Go’s network. This has enabled them to achieve a 2-day delivery footprint across 97% of the U.S. and save ~$700,000 annually in warehousing expenses. They have also realized over 25% cost savings on shipping expenses by eliminating all their long-zone deliveries.
  • A Startup Outdoor Equipment Supplier. This business, owned and managed by just two employees, was fulfilling orders out of their founder’s house in the Northeast U.S. for the first year of business. However, rapid growth resulted in this process quickly becoming unsustainable. It was taking 5+ days for their orders to reach the West Coast, and they were paying excessive fees for shipping as a result of their bulky products and long-zone delivery needs. But with Ware2Go, this customer was able to deploy their inventory in three warehouses across the nation and now receives 99% 2-day ground delivery coverage. They are also saving ~30% on shipping costs annually and have eliminated 25+ hours of in-house fulfillment responsibilities by allowing Ware2Go to manage all of their storage and pick / pack operations.  

The Bottom Line: Contact Ware2Go if You’re Serious About Creating a Nationwide 2-Day Ground Shipping Footprint

Today, Ware2Go is actively enabling hundreds of merchants to affordably outsource their warehousing and fulfillment and achieve 1-2-day ground delivery footprints. These merchants consist of all different sizes, are spread across a broad range of industries, and are selling via a diverse array of products and channels. But regardless of their industry or composition, Ware2Go has been able to effectively service them and provide guaranteed 1-2-day ground delivery coverage for all of their customers at a very affordable price.

So, for any merchant that finds themselves needing a more efficient and cost-effective distribution model, we encourage you to contact Ware2Go’s supply chain experts for a personalized consultation. It might end up saving you significantly on shipping expenses and enabling you to reach all your U.S. customers in 1-2 days without exhausting your budget or overwhelming your employees.  

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