Both UPS and rival carrier FedEx announced ecommerce partnership deals this week as they head into the busy holiday shopping season that kicks off with Cyber Weekend next Friday … no make that Thanksgiving Day … no wait, it’s already started (see below).
FedEx has partnered with electronics retailer Newegg, giving its customers an in-app option at checkout to pick up their order at one of 2,500 FedEx locations in the U.S., including 1,800 FedEx Office retail locations. The packages can be stored free of charge for up to five days.
“As e-commerce continues to grow, Hold at FedEx Location is an added benefit that gives customers more flexibility to receive their shipment to better fit their schedules,” said David Payton, Vice President of Marketing at FedEx in a release.
Newegg also offers will-call order pickup at some of its distribution facilities in North America, free shipping for Newegg Premier Members and a variety of delivery options.
Another benefit of the FedEx deal for Newegg: it’s a way to counter the growing threat of “porch piracy,” where thieves target ecommerce deliveries and snatch them after dropoff. This threat is especially present with higher-value items like electronics and computer gear that Newegg is known for.
Perhaps customers of Newegg’s “black November” extravaganza will be taking advantage of the FedEx pickup program. The retailer has blown out the holiday deal and shopping season to include the entire month.
The FedEx-Newegg program is similar to the UPS Access Point Location program, which allows customers to have their ecommerce orders routed to pickup lockers at 4,000 U.S. locations, including UPS Stores as well as local merchants like 7-11.
For its part, UPS has partnered with packaging company Sealed Air Corp. to address the needs of ecommerce shippers. Under the partnership, UPS customers gain access to package engineering expertise and services through Sealed Air’s Packaging Application Centers, which provide design, testing and packaging performance analysis for customers from 27 global locations.
A big part of the UPS/Sealed Air partnership is focused on cutting packaging waste and saving on shipping costs for ecommerce customers. Sealed Air will participate in the UPS Customer Technology Program, providing packaging systems and materials. CTP is a customer loyalty program that connects small to medium-sized businesses with hardware, software and peripherals providers to help them gain efficiency across their business and enable growth.