U.S. Postal Service, USPS, UPS, Parcel Select, shipping and delivery

U.S. Postal Service Again Posts Parcel Gains, But Overall Loss

| Mike O'Brien

The U.S. Postal Service reported operating revenue of $17.7 billion in Q2, up $788 million or 4.7% from 2015. The increase was primarily due to an 11.4% gain in shipping and package volume and pricing changes. While the USPS keeps posting double-digit parcel gains, it continues to drown in pension-driven red ink, with a $2 billion quarterly net loss, up from $1.5 billion a year ago.

8 Steps to Improving Inventory Management and the Bottom Line

| Gary C. Smith

Even the most efficient multichannel merchant often struggles with managing excess inventory. Common practices such as discounting or liquidation devalue products and undermine sales. And ecommerce makes it easier for shoppers to find cut-rate products. Here are 8 steps to help you avoid the biggest inventory management mistakes and come out on top.

FedEx, TNT Express

FedEx-TNT Merger Clears Final Hurdle With Chinese Approval

| Mike O'Brien

A final hurdle to FedEx’s proposed $4.8 billion acquisition of Dutch carrier TNT Express NV has been cleared via an unconditional approval from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce. The deal has already been blessed by authorities in the EU and Brazil, after an initial challenge last fall by the former. The deal will bring FedEx close to parity with UPS in Europe, or possibly launch it into second place behind EU market leader DHL.

FedEx, UPS, FedEx Ground, FedEx Express, ecommerce fulfillment

FedEx Says Amazon Business Not a Concern

| Mike O'Brien

FedEx told analysts on a third quarter call that Amazon was simply addressing capacity issues with its own assets a la other major retailers, so they weren’t worried about the business. For the quarter, FedEx’s net income fell 19% to $507 million, while Ground revenue was up 30% to $4.41 billion. However higher costs due in part to network expansion and peak season demand caused the segment’s operating income to drop from $559 million to $557 million.

Ask the Right Questions About Your Retail Freight Management Strategy

| Maria Haggerty

The thought process behind a retail freight management strategy has a direct impact on a brand’s customer experience. While customers may not see this firsthand, the intricacies involved in designing a box and its shipping procedures are many. For brands looking to improve their freight management practices and excite customers, here are two crucial questions to start with, and what you need to consider.

ecommerce returns

Growth in Ecommerce Returns Will Drive Facilities Demand

| Mike O'Brien

A new CBRE report has found that rapid growth in ecommerce returns is creating future demand for new or expanded facilities to handle reverse logistics. Find out how this trend is expected to play out and what the implications are for operations and fulfillment.

omnichannel fulfillment

Ecommerce Return Rates Continue to Climb

| Mike O'Brien

Companies are grappling with higher ecommerce return rates, and how to address reverse logistics as well as capturing the maximum value of inbound goods. Find out the results of the MCM Outlook Survey on ecommerce returns, and what can be done to keep the growing rates in check.

FedEx

UPS Challenging FedEx-TNT Deal in Brazil

| Mike O'Brien

Three years after having its acquisition of TNT snagged on EU regulatory concerns, UPS has filed an appeal of the FedEx-TNT deal. Will this latest move hang up the $4.8 billion deal for its main rival, announced last April? Stay tuned for the next installment.

ecommerce returns

Free Returns Offered by More Merchants Than Ever

| Mike O'Brien

What were some of the major themes in handling holiday 2015 returns?

Patrick Allard, VIce President of Sales and Business Development for Newgistics, recently spoke with Multichannel Merchant Senior Editor Mike O’Brien on what his company observed from working with its 450+ retail customers, including the growth in ecommerce returns processing and the impact of trends like free returns and other perks offered by retailers.