An Analysis of UPS 2018 General Rate Increase and Other Changes

| Dave Sullivan

Effective Dec. 24 (yes, you read that correctly), rates for UPS Ground, UPS Air and International services as well as UPS Air Freight rates within and between the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico will increase an average of 4.9%. Here’s an analysis of UPS’s changes and the impact they will have on parcel shippers.

Early Gap Analysis Equals Software Conversion Success

| Paul Sobota

When it comes to a software conversion project, there are major unknowns if you don’t conduct a gap analysis with the selected vendor. Such analysis provides insights on proposed modifications and workarounds, estimated hours and costs, helping you avoid expensive, time-consuming overruns.

Amazon Key Allows In-Home Deliveries When You’re Out

| Mike O'Brien

Right on the heels of Walmart’s September announcement of an in-home grocery delivery service being tested in New York City, Amazon has come out with its own offering allowing drivers to enter homes and drop off items under the watchful eye of a new Amazon smart connected camera – all tied to Alexa.

8 Ways to Get More Productivity, Quality from Your 3PL Partner

| Curt Barry

Entrusting your customer service or fulfillment to a third-party logistics (3PL) company is a big step. Like using other outside services, it’s important to manage the process to reduce errors and exceptions, providing a high level of service at an affordable cost. These 8 steps will help you get the most from your 3PL partner.

Northwest Research Inc. Acquired by FedEx

| Mike O'Brien

FedEx announced it has acquired inventory management provider Northwest Research, adding technology to help with its ecommerce fulfillment capabilities. The companies said Northwest will provide “new approaches to inventory management issues, including specialized research to maximize successful outcomes for challenging shipments.”

SpaceX Says, Same-Day Delivery Is So Last Week

| Mike O'Brien

Jeff Bezos and the innovation teams at Amazon seem to have cornered the market on far-out ideas that push the envelope for ecommerce distribution, from delivery drones to blimp warehouses to even an undersea DC. That is, until Elon Musk and his hardy band of rocketeers at SpaceX came along and shot the moon – or Mars.

How to Analyze the Risk of Your DTC Fulfillment Projects

| Curt Barry

Risk analysis is essential for large and complex DTC fulfillment projects including the above as well as moving to or from third-party fulfillment operations. As a result, most large projects are not delivered on time or within budget. Understanding risk and the likelihood of negative outcomes will help reduce costs and improve on-time implementation.

Happy Returns Takes a New Approach to Ecommerce Returns

| Mike O'Brien

A startup company is looking to ease a chronic ecommerce pain point – returns – by enabling customers to bring unwanted items to a nearby mall for fast processing and credit, even if the seller doesn’t have its own stores. See what Happy Returns has been up to and what its plans are for the future.